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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

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Employee Retention Issue Raised

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By Vince Conti

STONE HARBOR – At the Nov. 3 Stone Harbor Borough Council meeting, Councilman Raymond Parzych commented on the recruitment and retention difficulties experienced in the Public Works Department. This wasn’t the first time Parzych raised the issue. 

In August 2019, Parzych called on the governing body to begin some form of systematic review of the town’s difficulties in recruiting and retaining municipal workers.  

At the time, he said the borough needed “to focus on some kind of plan on how we can address pay problems to retain the people we train.” Business Administrator Jill Gougher, who has since retired, said this was a matter for the annual budget process. 

Fast forward a year, and Parzych, who chairs the council’s standing public works committee, is making a similar plea. The situation has the added complication of more second homeowners residing in the borough for longer periods mainly due to the pandemic. The need for municipal services has grown in response to the large number of residents. 

The borough addressed the issue in parts of its workforce with higher pay scales for lifeguards, a change to the compensation structure for police, stipends for volunteer firefighters, and an ordinance change allowing for full-time paid firefighters. Parzych raised the issue specifically targeting public works employees. 

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