Decreased work week for county employees on hold

St. Joseph County’s plan to implement a 35-hour work week for non-union and union hourly employees hit a snag and, for the moment, will remain in a holding pattern.

County administrator Teresa Doehring raised the issue during the county commission’s meeting Tuesday. She said the proposal derailed when the county’s largest clerical group – the AFSCME union – did not accept the option.

Commissioners back in August approved several letters of understanding with various unions representing the employees, whose workload would be decreased from what is currently a 40-hour workweek.

But the 40-member AFSCME group held out in opposition to the budget-saving measure and now Doehring and commissioners will have to regroup to decide what direction to take next.

The plan was to be implemented back in September and continue through the end of December.

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