If you’re thinking of moving from private practice to government, you should be prepared to take a hit in perks as well as pay. Sure, your hours will be better — just avoid the S.D.N.Y. — and you might even get a free flu shot. But you won’t have the fancy offices, the swanky lunches, or round-the-clock support staff. Sometimes you’ll have to make your own photocopies.
It is not, however, all doom and gloom. In the past, Department of Justice employees got to enjoy four-dollar meatballs (plus $13,000 in brownies). And now we hear that for at least one DOJ diva, work was a day at the beach — quite literally.
From Al Kamen of the Washington Post:
[T]he acting deputy director of the [voting rights] section, Susana Lorenzo-Giguere, has been accused of collecting a $64 per diem, including on weekends and the Fourth of July, while spending half of June and most of July and August with her husband and kids at their beach house on Cape Cod.
The allegation, made to the department inspector general apparently by someone linked to the Boston regional office, was that Lorenzo-Giguere made “multiple” government-paid trips to the Cape and that she improperly said that “her presence on Cape Cod was necessary pending litigation in Boston,” which was in the courts over the summer….
The complaint also alleged that Lorenzo-Giguere “spent little time in Boston” this summer and did little work on the case. Also, what supervision and oversight she provided was done by phone to Boston while she “remained on the beach,” and she would have been able to do this from her office in Washington.
C’mon, folks — cut Susana some slack. Her kids needed her; building sandcastles is no easy task. And she probably looks great in a swimsuit, too.
More about Ms. Lorenzo-Giguere, after the jump.
Additional analysis from TPM Muckraker:
You can read the referenced complaint here, which is addressed to the Justice Department’s inspector general. The most sensational accusation, to be sure, is not that Lorenzo-Giguere managed to get paid while staying at her beach house, but that the Department “files lawsuits not because of the merits of the underlying claims but because the venue of the targeted defendant allows Ms. Lorenzo-Giguere to compel taxpayer funding of her annual summer retreat to Cape Cod.”
We heard from a few former DOJ employees about Ms. Lorenzo-Giguere, who is apparently quite diva-licious. One source wrote:
Susana Lorenzo-Giguere is a real piece of work. A friend in the Voting Section say she’s as bad as Shanetta [Cutlar], maybe worse…
One female ex-Justice Department employee commented:
What is it about the women in power at DOJ? There must be a secret “Diva 101″ training course, only offered to select DOJ employees. Alas, I was not part of that inner circle when I was doing my time…
If these allegations are true, how was Lorenzo-Giguere able to get away with this? Word on the street is that it was due in part to her exceedingly close relationship with the Section Chief, John Tanner.
That’s Latin for ‘Daily,’ Not ‘Occasionally’ [Al Kamen / Washington Post]
Fighting Discrimination: It’s A Day at The Beach [TPMmuckraker]
Complaint to Justice Department Inspector General about Susana Lorenzo-Giguere [Talking Points Memo Document Collection]
$13,000 for brownies and cookies at the Justice Dept. [Think Progress via Wonkette]