Trustees compromise on parks workers

AUSTINTOWN —  A trustee who wanted to combine the parks and road departments to save money says the township will not do that, but she believes there’s been a good compromise.

Trustee Lisa Oles said last month that she didn’t want to fill three open positions in the parks department and that she wanted to send the remaining department employee to work in the road department. She said extra manpower is needed there in the winter.

Oles said she didn’t believe there is enough work in the parks in winter to keep four employees busy, and that during the summer, retirees and college students could work in the parks for less money.

Trustee David Ditzler disagreed, however, telling The Vindicator that the acreage of the park system has nearly doubled in the last several years and that there’s enough work there for the employees.

Ditzler said he advocated keeping three workers in the parks department and having a fourth employee split time between parks and the maintenance departments.

Oles and Ditzler consulted with a former parks supervisor and decided that two full-time employees would be sufficient for the parks in the winter, Oles said.

The township will hire another full-time staffer for the summer, who will then work in the road department in the winter, she said.

She said the township will still hire temporary help for the parks in the summer.

Township Administrator Mike Dockry said one full-time staffer started work this week, and there is an ad running for another.

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