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Prescott Valley four-day workweek begins Nov. 1

A four-day workweek and other measures to cut employee costs will go into effect by Nov. 1 for town government.

The Town Council voted unanimously this past Thursday to approve recommendations from a committee of employees to achieve Town Manager Larry Tarkowski's goal of cutting employee costs by 5 percent. Tarkowski recommended the measures because town revenues have dipped amid a continuing national recession.

The council vote followed a presentation by Human Resources Director Danielle Gersper, who had met with the employees.

The employees voted for a four-day workweek, which would reduce their hours from 40 to 38 per week, according to Gersper.

The four-day workweek will apply to three floors of the Civic Center. The Magistrate Court on the first floor, the library - located in a new building - and the Police Department will not observe the four-day workweek, Tarkowski said. However, the court and library will observe a furlough one day a month, and the Police Department will go to a flexible furlough for employees.

"It's kind of a department-by-department thing," Mayor Harvey Skoog said after the meeting about the furloughs. The council approved a resolution to cut costs without discussion, a week after council members reviewed the proposal during a work/study meeting.

Tarkowski said maintaining customer service is the intent behind keeping a five-day workweek at the Police Department.

The cut in hours also exempts about 70 sworn officers who work at the Police Department, Gersper has said.

Gersper said before the meeting that the cut in hours and furloughs could exceed the 5 percent cost saving that Tarkowski initially broached with town employees Oct. 5. She said a 5 percent cut in employee costs could save the town government $250,000 in the current fiscal year, which concludes June 30, 2010.

Most operations in the Civic Center will switch to the four-day workweek beginning Nov. 1.

To accommodate the loss of Friday hours to the public, the Civic Center will extend its hours from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays.

The change of hours will not apply to the Police Department lobby, the new library or the municipal court, which is on the first floor of the Civic Center.

The Central Yavapai Metropolitan Planning Organization, also on the first floor of the Civic Center, will continue its schedule of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays.

The library, now located in a separate building on the Civic Center grounds, will maintain its current hours of 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Fridays and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. However, the library will close one day per month to carry out the 5 percent cut.

The days the library will be close coincide with holidays and are on Nov. 25, Dec. 31, Jan. 19, Feb. 16, March 22, April 19, May 10 and June 1.

The court will close Nov. 30, Dec. 31, Jan. 29, Feb. 26, March 26, April 30, May 28 and June 25.

To safeguard public safety, the hourly cuts exempt sworn officers. However, civilian employees of the police department will observe a flexible furlough one day a month.

For more information, call Management Services at 759-3100 or send an e-mail to comrel@pvaz.net.

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