For several months, employees at the Pawnee Assisted Living Hotel have told us they are not getting paid on time.
The Bulletin reported the situation in May after interviewing the director of the Pawnee. And since then, we have published follow up reports about the residents, the paychecks, state inspections and board members leaving, as the financially troubled hotel came under scrutiny by several state officials.
We looked at the situation from different perspectives. We reported the director's and board president's viewpoints. We printed a letter from those employees who said they didn’t care about late checks, they chose to be there anyway.
And we looked at the challenges that would be involved if the hotel were ever to close.
A week or so ago, we heard the most serious complaints yet. At least one employee said that his or her paychecks were seven pay periods behind, which meant working for more than 14 weeks without pay.
We don't ordinarily use unnamed sources but we respect people who are concerned about job reprisal.
We talked with other employees including those who contacted us over the last few months, as well as some who recently quit. We obtained supporting documents for the claim that paychecks are late -- in the worst cases, months late.
We talked to the Pawnee director and to state officials, none of whom assured us that they were making sure no employee involuntarily went months without pay.
The report is in this week's Bulletin print paper.
We may be criticized for using unamed sources, but we delved into the story of the Pawnee and honestly reported our findings.
We wish the Pawnee success in overcoming its challenges. There are no simple solutions but there are solutions. There is evidence that officials are trying to improve the situation and are making progress. That is something we will be happy to report as it becomes more evident.
Workers who suffer and don't know where to turn deserve to be heard, including those who work more than three months without pay.
To read the story, pick up a copy of this week’s print edition of the North Platte Bulletin, currently on newsstands throughout Lincoln County.