In defence of our school crossing supervisors
LET me address my conflict of interest in this matter.
I am the relief to the relief school crossing supervisor.
As such I work for the council an hour or two a term.
Having just retired, if I lose that time I will not be the least worried.
However, I do worry for the treatment of the permanent crossing supervisors - Di, Lisa, Val, Kirsten, Kylie and Jo.
They are highly skilled workers with their lives, and the lives of the school students, in their hands.
The job is a particularly dangerous one with all supervisors recounting near misses.
They also work in all weather - 40 degree heat in summer and cold and rain in winter - no air conditioned offices for them, or heading back to base at the first drops of rain.
Yet, when the council needs to find $700,000 in savings, they become the first target.
Suggestions that teachers might take on the role, after they have already worked a long tiring day, is ludicrous. So too is the use of volunteers. This is not Meals on Wheels, but a dangerous job in all weather that any volunteer would soon tire of.
Council’s chief executive officer has asked Mansfield ratepayers to come up with savings ideas. I have one for you Mr Green. Get out of your office and walk around your empire at ‘head office’.
Any staff not working on rates, roads, rubbish and home care, shake their hand, thank them for their service and tell them they may be employed when times get better.
Some 74 staff at ‘head office’ is too many.
Resilience officers and inclusiveness teams, or whatever they are now called, are OK when times are good.
They are a luxury that cannot be afforded when times are tight.
Whatever you do leave the crossing supervisors alone.
They are the frontline protecting our most vulnerable, our children, on behalf of their parents.
Peter Hunt, Mansfield should have been forecasting the rate cap.
It is extremely disappointing that it only now appears to have hit the radar of council.
I was the finance manager at Mansfield over four years ago.
One of my greatest concerns during my tenure was the massive increase in the salary of the CEO.
For a tiny council it was not justified.
Since I have left I have also noted senior manager salaries have increased dramatically.
For a tiny business, this is financial suicide.
Another astonishing and unproductive system in place at council is the hiring of part timers and job sharing – i.e. where a full time job is performed by up to three staff each working a day or two a week.
This costs council as a single person would get through the role quicker than the two and have capacity to do more.
This would negate the need to put on extra staff and save money.
So, when I hear council putting the financial situation on residents and stating that the only solution is to cut services, I feel angry.
The very first thing an organisation should do before that, is to look within the council for money being wasted.
The items I have highlighted above are very basic and very relevant.
They need to look at salaries and relate them back to the size of this council.
I believe if they did this properly, they would find at least $100,000.
In addition, if council replaced part timers with full timers to perform the jobs, they would find that the fulltime equivalent of the part timers would perform the jobs in much less time, resulting in more dollar savings. David Butler, former Mansfield resident