Job cuts for police staff
IT HAS become more difficult for Gayndah and Biggenden residents to use their local police station.
The stations in both towns lost their two part-time administration officers as part of recent cuts to the budget by the State Government.
The administration redundancies will mean reduced office hours at the stations and increased duties for the region’s police officers.
Police will now have to cover the administrative duties which used to be handled by administration staff.
The officers will also perform drivers license services, changes of address and other administra- tive tasks as well as maintaining their beat.
And if an incident occurs during office hours which requires the officer-on-duty, the station will be left unattended.
Callers are asked to contact the Maryborough Police or dial 000 in the case of an emergency.
The new opening hours at the Gayndah police station are Tuesday 8am-noon and Thursday noon–4pm.
At Biggenden, the opening hours are Monday to Thursday mornings, but the station sign states that “due to operational policing requirements this may not always be possible”.
A Queensland Police Media representative said a Biggenden officer in charge would begin duty this month.
The spokesperson said the new OIC would be reviewing the client service times “to best meet the needs of the local community”.
Gayndah Police OIC Sergeant Lucas Hampson encouraged the community to work with the police as the reduced office hours took effect.
“Operational duties do come first, but we will do our best to be here (during office hours),” Sgt Hampson said.
“We will continue to provide a core service to the community.
“We encourage people to leave a message on the answering machine if we are not available.”
Sgt Hampson said the police were trying to get out on the street more often “to give people that extra face-time”.