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Parks and Recreation Department to be formed

March 25, 2003|by SCOTT BUTKI

scottb@herald-mail.com

Under a planned reorganization, Hagerstown is creating a Parks and Recreation Department in an effort to cut costs and enhance services, City Administrator Bruce Zimmerman said.

John Budesky, the city's director of administrative services, will be in charge of the new department that takes effect April 7. Budesky's salary will remain at $61,963, city spokeswoman Karen Giffin said Monday.

The city currently operates the Recreation Department separately from the parks maintenance operation, which is part of the Public Works Department. Under the reorganization, the two will be combined.

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The reorganization will save about $62,000 in salaries and benefits because a recreation position will be left permanently vacant, Giffin said.

Having parks and recreation employees work closer together will make it easier for the city to enhance some park and recreation programs, Zimmerman said.

Recreation Department Manager Doug Stull will serve as the recreation superintendent. His salary will drop from $63,939 to $51,355, Giffin said.

Parks Supervisor Junior Mason will serve as the parks superintendent. His salary will increase from $42,598 to $50,066, she said.

The Public Works Department will continue focusing on core services including maintaining streets, vehicles, traffic signs and signals and removing snow, Zimmerman said.

"With our current financial challenges, the city administration and staff are looking at ways of restructuring our operations to both achieve savings and enhance services. This change is intended to accomplish both objectives," he said.

The city earlier this month said it was merging the water and sewer departments.

The water-sewer consolidation is expected the save the city about $151,000 in salaries and benefits because it will eliminate two vacant management positions, including water department manager and water department engineer, Zimmerman said.

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