Q Our city has no validly-adopted written policy concerning payment to employees for compensatory time earned. May the city pay employees for comp time anyway? May the city retroactively incorporate unused yet accumulated comp time for current employees upon formal adoption of such a policy?

A Section 96 of the Mississippi Constitution prohibits the payment of extra compensation in excess of the approved salary or hourly rate for a particular employee. Under State law, in order to pay compensation for comp time to municipal employees, there must be a policy authorizing such payment spread upon the municipal minutes and in effect when the extra work was done. The Attorney General’s office does not opine on any potential application of the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Tindell, December 13, 2013)