As reported in The Explorer, Interim Town Manager Jerene Watson has notified employees that she intends to give them the additional paid days off on Dec. 24 & Dec 31.
She noted, this is "in appreciation for all the extra efforts you give serving our community and the public."
Ms. Watson told The Explorer the extra days would not cost the town any additional money.
When we heard about this gracious offer by Ms. Watson, we had a few questions. They are:
1) Was this a unilateral decision on her part?
The answer is "no." Ms. Watson seems to have asked the seven council members for their input. We understand that three members had concerns, but four were "OK" with this arrangement.
The only problem is this: There are ONLY SIX Council Members and although Pat Spoerl was "OK" with it, she is NOT yet sworn in as a Council Member.
2) How can paid days off NOT cost Oro Valley anything as Ms. Watson said?
The answer is it can't! In fact, it costs Oro Valley approximately $65,000/day to sustain the work force. Two days off relates to $130,000. That is hardly "nothing."
3) What about the employees that must work these two days?
The answer is, we understand those employees that must work Dec 24 & 31 will receive two "free days off" in the future.
Although Ms. Watson was showing her gratitude to the employees, in these difficult economic times, we believe a Christmas Turkey would have been a satisfactory gift, and would have been a lot less costly to us, the Oro Valley Taxpayers.
We think Ms. Watson overstepped her authority. Are we being a "grinch?" What do you think?