Work continues with scaled-back city staff

The city transitions to its emergency staffing levels Monday, with about half of its 650-employee workforce at home on paid administrative leave, and most departments, except for public safety, operating at reduced levels.

Many city facilities — recreation centers, public pools, libraries and parks — closed, and other city facilities, such as City Hall, Community Development and Public Works, closed to routine walk-in traffic and urged that business be conducted by phone, email or online.

In the city’s Engineering Department, not unlike other departments, Director Christy LeBatard says work will cotinue, a message that she relayed to more than a hundred engineers, architects and others. Many are working on development and construction projects — public and private — that require city review.

“Engineering has a plan that will keep our department working and to keep construction projects going,” LeBatard said on Tuesday, days before the mayor invoked the emergency staffing plan. “The staff engineers and some of the inspectors are considered essential employees, so they will continue to work and will be available just as if this pandemic were not occurring.

“Our goal continues to be keeping contractors working and projects moving forward, and Engineering is going to do everything that we can to make sure that happens.”

Added LeBatard: “I am hopeful that all of you, your coworkers, and your families stay healthy throughout this ordeal.”
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