A veteran official in the city Health Department spent about five months working full-time for the Washington, D.C., Health Department at the same time he remained on the Philadelphia payroll, collecting a salary from city taxpayers.

George J. Zameska, 54, an environmental-health administrator in charge of food inspections, resigned from the Washington job in April with two days' notice - around the time that Philadelphia's inspector general began a probe of Zameska's dual employment.

A spokeswoman for the Washington Health Department said that Zameska worked there from November 2006 until April 2007, at an annual salary of $88,545, managing inspections of restaurants, cafeterias, street vendors and other food services.

During the same period, Zameska continued collecting his $86,047 annual salary in Philadelphia, where he has been a city employee since 1975, according to city payroll records.

Reached yesterday at his city office in West Philadelphia, Zameska declined to comment.

It was unclear whether his supervisors in the city Health Department knew about his twin jobs.

But it appeared they facilitated the dual employment by providing Zameska with a one-day-a-week work schedule that did not conflict with his duties in the nation's capital.

City Inspector General Seth Williams said Zameska announced last year that he was retiring from his Philadelphia job to take a similar post in Washington. Colleagues gave him a retirement party.

But in November, as he began working Monday through Friday in Washington, Zameska was permitted to remain on Philadelphia's payroll, working one day a week on Saturdays and taking another four days in unused vacation time, piled up over his 31 years as a city employee.

That arrangement allowed him to keep earning credits toward his Philadelphia pension - and it also kept the city from hiring a replacement for the civil-service job, someone who would work full-time protecting city taxpayers from unsanitary restaurants and other food-service problems.

Williams said he began his investigation based on an anonymous tip. He said he sent his completed report 10 days ago to interim city Health Commissioner Carmen I. Paris.

Paris, who's been running the department since March 2006, would not talk with the Daily News yesterday.

Department spokesman Jeff Moran said officials were waiting for clearance from the Law Department before providing any information on their handling of Zameska.

Mayor Street's press secretary, Joe Grace, said the administration takes the probe "very seriously," but hadn't come to any conclusions.

"We are waiting for some additional information from the inspector general, which we plan to fully review," Grace said.

Williams concluded that Zameska's twin jobs violated the city residency requirement and a provision of the city charter that Philadelphia employees may not work simultaneously for the federal government, the state government or any other political subdivision.

"All we can do is make recommendations," Williams said. "It's up to the appointing authority to do whatever she thinks is appropriate."

Leila Abrar, a spokeswoman for the Washington Health Department, said she was not permitted to discuss personnel issues, such as whether Zameska had been asked to resign. *

Daily News columnist Stu Bykofsky

contributed to this report.