A San Mateo County Sheriff's Office lieutenant is suing the county over a pay bump he says he was due but never received.
Joseph Martinez was hired as a sheriff's deputy in 1990, according to the complaint filed Friday by attorney Kyle Wende of the Sacramento-based law firm Mastagni, Holstedt, Amick, Miller & Johnsen. Martinez was promoted to sergeant in 2001 and then lieutenant in 2010, the lawsuit states.
In 1999, Martinez received an advanced training certificate from the California Commission on Peace Officers Standards and Training. It made him eligible for a pay bump, according to the lawsuit.
A memorandum of understanding the Deputy Sheriff's Association had with the county between 1999 and 2012 provided a 7.5 percent boost in base pay to members who received the certificate. Members of the Organization of Sheriff's Sergeants had a similar provision in their 1999-2006 and 2006-2012 agreements that provided increases of 5 and 7.5 percent, respectively.
Martinez submitted his certificate to the training unit of the Sheriff's Office but never received the raise, according to the lawsuit.
"Throughout the years 1999 through 2013, Martinez was unaware he was being underpaid because the paychecks ... do not include an itemized statement of how the employee's rate of pay is calculated," the complaint states.
Martinez filed a claim for the compensation in March after learning about the error from a personnel services supervisor, but it was denied by the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, according to the lawsuit.
Martinez, no longer in a union since becoming a lieutenant in 2010, received a base salary of $132,371 in 2012, data provided by the county shows.
County officials were not available to comment on the complaint Monday due to the Veterans Day holiday.