Butkovitz: Workers recycling scrap without permission

Posted: April 05, 2014

A Philadelphia Streets Department worker and a School District employee have been caught on surveillance video hauling scrap metal from their jobs and selling it to recyclers, officials said Thursday.

The video shows the streets worker using a forklift to put large items such as guardrails and storage containers into a trailer attached to his pickup truck, City Controller Alan Butkovitz said at a news conference at the Municipal Services Building. The employees were not identified.

The School District maintenance department worker, whom Butkovitz said was a locksmith, took scrap metal from various jobs to M Dunn Recycling at 3611 Welsh Rd. The worker sold the items, most made of brass, on more than 30 occasions over a two-year period, Butkovitz said.

Sales records from the recycler showed the worker was paid a total of $1,747, Butkovitz said, adding that the scraps were hauled to the recycler during work hours in a School District vehicle.

Butkovitz said the School District worker admitted selling the scrap metal and keeping the money. The district does not have a written policy for the disposal of scrap metal, Butkovitz said.

The city worker made at least six trips since December to NDV Recycling, 3630 N. Second St., and was paid a total of $850, Butkovitz said. City rules require the disposal of scrap metal from city property be done through the city's procurement department, he added.

The city controller said he could not determine how widespread illegal scrap metal recycling was within the School District or the Streets Department. Butkovitz said no criminal charges have been filed, noting that investigators from the affected departments would decide whether to seek prosecution.

The investigation of the Streets Department worker began March 5 and ended Wednesday, Butkovitz said.

The probe of the School District worker began in August and also ended Wednesday, he said.



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