By Tammy Gray –
Holbrook City Hall will not be closed on Fridays, members of the city council were informed at their Tuesday evening meeting.
City Manager Ray Alley explained that after considering several options, he believes the best solution is to keep city hall open on Fridays, but with a reduced staff.
“There were too many cons with closing on Fridays,” he said.
Alley told the council that his concern is that some salaried staff members are regularly working 10 and 12 hour days, and he wants to avoid burning them out.
“We’ve got some staff members that are just putting in too many hours,” Alley remarked.
Alley does not work on Fridays, and noted that having three-day weekends on a regular basis has allowed him to keep his energy and enthusiasm for the job.
“I probably couldn’t keep going like this if it weren’t for three-day weekends,” he said.
According to Alley, senior salaried staff members would be offered the option of taking Fridays off as flex time. At least one staff member will remain in the office on Fridays to keep city hall open for business. He noted that not all services at city hall will be available that day, and citizens needing services that require zoning or finance expertise will have to make an appointment for a different day.
He also told the council that he planned on trying the new schedule through the summer, as long as council members had no objection to the plan.
“We’re not changing anything, except there will be a limited staff on Fridays,” he said.
Councilman Richard Peterson asked why the schedule would only be in place during the summer. Alley explained that summer is typically when certain staff members put in longer hours, but if the trial is successful and needed during the winter, it may be continued.
“It depends on how it works out,” he said.
Mayor Jeff Hill pointed out that with senior staff members gone from city hall on Fridays, the public should be made aware that they can pay bills at city hall that day, but most other types of business will have to wait.
Alley noted that the mayor’s summation was accurate.
Council members did not take any official action, but several remarked that they did not have an issue with trying the new schedule.