I know many of you are waiting and asking why we don’t have City Hall opened five days a week? Why with the surplus and all the spending going on isn’t the Mayor and Council bring back the five-day work week? The five-day work week is extinct and I am sorry to say I think it will never come back. When the City Council agreed to have a four-day work week little did they know that the Mayor in all his wisdom made this part of the contract agreement with the unions. A letter of understanding was agreed upon with the unions and contracts won’t be open until 2016. When council chair Baron told the Mayor shortly after the four-day work week was put into effect that employees of the City and residents didn’t like it. At that time, the Council had the understanding that they could change this back if it didn’t work out. Council Chair Baron was in for a rude awakening when he was told by the Mayor that this is part of the union contract now in the City.
Why would City workers give up all the benefits of a four-day work week? They wouldn’t unless the City is going to give them something very big to replace it. The overtime alone for some workers is huge why would they give that up? They wouldn’t there’s nothing in the letter of understanding that say’s they have to. Everyone over at City Hall has adjusted to four-day work week those departments that needed more employees got them. Heads of departments are supposed to work on Fridays at least that’s what the taxpayers were told. One department head even has a video on YouTube speaking at an event in the middle of the day on a Friday. I’m in no way saying this department head is doing a darn thing wrong. No, he’s doing just what his boss (the Mayor) tells him he can do. No, the one who’s done wrong here is the Mayor for telling the taxpayer of Dearborn Heights and the Council for that matter lie after lie. These lies were told to get the Headlee Override Passed to get that money out of the pockets of the resident and into the account of the City. No dear resident I dare say that everyone is just fine with this arrangement over at City Hall. Three day weekend, over time, and what every other goodie’s got thrown into that letter of understanding with the union.
The Mayor never came before the residents and said oh, by the way you might like to know that I’m putting the four-day work week in the union contract and this could be a permanent thing. There was no transparency here. Not with the voters who might have liked to know something like that before they agreed to give more money to the City. Not with the Council who would have liked to know all of this before they agreed to let it go before the voters. Not only did the Council vote yes to let this go on the ballot they supported it based on the same information that the residents had. This wasn’t something that was put together last-minute. I’d say that the Mayor was talking with the union and knew just what they were asking for and just what he was going to give them. Naturally the Mayor will deny it all, why would he admit to being so devious? I’d expect nothing less after all he is the master of the double talk. Tell the council yes of course you can cancel the four-day work week at any time it’s not working. All the while knowing that it’s part of a letter of understanding and contracts can’t be opened back up until 2016.
At the very least the Mayor should have come before the Council before he made the change with that letter of understanding. How many times did residents call council members and tell them about seeing City workers working on Friday? The Mayor repeatedly said there is no over time absolutely not. Not to his knowledge is anyone working on Friday. Over and over we heard these statements at council meetings. Not true. Some within the DPW Department have been working overtime from the start of the four-day work week. It’s important to note here that not every union member gets over time. No. The union workers that work over at City Hall never get overtime for working on a Friday. DPW Department workers are the employees for the City taking the lion’s share of the overtime. Meter Readers for the City don’t get overtime. A Clerk typist doesn’t get overtime, Those working at the recreation department don’t get overtime. No one in the assessors office gets over time. Those that work in the Treasures office don’t get over time. To my knowledge, no one from the building department gets overtime.
A little side note about those four hours given when the City asked the union workers to give up the 10%. There has been some talk here on the blog about these four hours. They were given four hours because they didn’t want to lose their insurance.
We can talk about the extinct five-day work week in 2016 until then this is what we have.