City to Take Over Scandal-Plagued CityTime Payroll Project

The city is taking control of a scandal-plagued payroll project away from outside consultants.

Starting Friday, dozens of consultants will be let go, with the rest being replaced over four years by city employees. City Comptroller John Liu said this should save $20 million a year.

CityTime software is supposed to streamline timekeeping for municipal employees, but the effort is way over budget and is still not complete. Last week, federal prosecutors charged 11 individuals and one sub-contractor in connection with what they say was a massive swindle of the city.

The project began in the late 1990s under Mayor Giuliani. It was supposed to cost $63 million but the cost has since ballooned to more than $600 million.

Bloomberg released a letter Wednesday asking the primary contractor, SAIC, to return $600 million which federal prosecutors say is "tainted, directly or indirectly, by fraud."

SAIC has not been charged, and said in a statement it "is ready to discuss appropriate resolution of this matter," and that it "shares the outrage expressed by the city at the fraud alleged on the part of former employees and subcontractors on the CityTime program."