Wednesday, August 13, 2008


The Mayor is looking to the Council for direction on the “Stint-Work” policy. As the Freeman described it so well : Stint allows employees in the Department of Public Works to leave early as long as they get their work done.

I want that policy at my job. I come from a family of home builders. The four of us work together to create large homes, additions or even a two-car garage. But none of our projects would get done if we operated on “Stint”. Would it work at your job?

Understand, not all of our DPW employees have this option. The welders, carpenters and many others work a full 8 hour day. The “Stint” applies to the Refuse/Recycle/Brush/Wood crews that hit the streets early in the morning. The job is tough, sometimes gross. Most of the public doesn’t do that level of exertion in a day, so some would agree with the policy.

However, we are in a new era. Tax dollars are scarce and the issues surrounding the harassment drama have placed additional focus on the workings of DPW. Notably; the “man-hours” and the apparent abandonment of the workplace early.

I don’t blame the Mayor looking to the Council for some support on this. Sottile has been working in overdrive and in stressful conditions for quite a while now. (Partially his own doing) But it is his prerogative to keep or pull “Stint” from the daily operations.

My first thought, I agree that the Mayor can pull the policy for a day to utilize the time they are already paid, for a specific task. I would expect a 24 hour notice of such a change to allow the crews to schedule their afternoons better, but a 21 employee grievance for the Harassment Test on a regular workday? Troy, Bart, you’re working against the taxpayers, not just the Mayor here.

Sottile was quoted: "In these difficult economic times, it is hard to justify to the residents of the city compensating these employees for a full day of work when they are released early."

"I support suspending stint work when the city needs the workers," Sottile said. "As we progress through time I believe stint work should eventually be removed to allow the employees to perform the work that is needed on a daily basis."

If “Stint” were to be eliminated, the refuse crews would be able to slow down and would diminish the physical ailments that are associated with rushing through a tough job; thus decreasing the sick time for employees recovering from those ailments.

Maybe this is the time Jim, but come to our table and lets assess the options before we are asked to memorialize our thoughts.


Anonymous said...

So,when the trash, brush,recycle trucks jam up the city streets at peak times because they need to work a full day,what does that solve,maybe our cans will be left on the sidewalk and not in the street.Some things do need to change,we should call to have brush picked up so there isn't a truck riding up and down the streets looking for it,metal should be picked up on regular trash day as well,(after calling dpw)metal should also be stock piled at the transfer station and then sell it,town of ulster does,but we put guys out to pick it up and give it to millens steel,why not sell it,you can't count on it for big revenue but it is revenue.THANK YOU

Anonymous said...

We have bluestone sidewalks all over the City that are in dire need of maintenance.

There is always something to do...

Anonymous said...

Brush and wood trucks are not on stint only trash,cardboard, paper and recycling. You must do your research better. As for the grievance Bart and Troy had no choice but to file a grievance, Yhe contract says "upon signing of this agreement stint work in the department of public worksshall be elimnated. Yhe City at its option, may reinstate stint work. This was done in 1991. Mayor Gallo reinstated stint work shortly there after. Mayor Sottile went even further by negotiating stint work will be done by senority, adding that there will be 4 garbage 3 recycling on stint.
The grievance has been filed so the common council would loook silly ruling on something they have no control over. Let the arbitratror do his job and decide if stint work is still in the contract or not.
I personally think stint is stupid the mayor has constantly warned employees that they are cutting corners to get done early. Take stint away and the extra man hours you think you,ll save may just cost you. Also what does the department head think.
This is nothing more than a personnell vendetta against the union. Bart and Troy have shown that they are much more fromilar with the contract than the mayor. Remember Jamie working EXTRA HOURS that blunder only cost the taxpayers $15000.00

Guess Who

Anonymous said...

I am a former stint worker. These men are the hardest workers on the city. Preforming the hazardous job in America. Leave them alone if you take stint away you take the incentive away. I remember Bart Robins on the trash truck until 5pm. He was not paid overtime for this. If we all worked that way the taxpayer will get hit with an overtime bill and the extra work will not get done.

Anonymous said...

I work for Waste Management I would loose money if I was on stint. I start at 3am. and do not get done until 3pm. I am glad my union does not have a stint clause. If you get rid of that clause in Kingston I would be glad to come to work for you. Pulling the trash around cars, over sonwbanks will take forever.

Anonymous said...

Listen to Hoffay, stay out of union business, let the union and the mayor fight it out. Stick to more important issue, like how are you going to pay for all the lawsuits facing the city.

Anonymous said...

Get rid of Gorsline and Jackson to start not stint. Gorslines been covering up for this pot smoking moron. He has been nothing but trouble from the start. The Mayor had him dead to rights when he had him followed and found out he was going home everyday at 1:00. But for some reason nothing happened to him. He has something on Gorsline and Gorsline has something on the Mayor. Concentrate on that not stint

jeremy blaber said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

The Mayor just wants the Council to give him political cover. Stay out of his fight with CSEA.

Mike Madsen said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Is that really Tiki Barber with the two silver cans? Who does he know at city hall to get on with the city?...smitty

Anonymous said...

The Mayor negotiated this contract?

As a reward for keeping KPA studio closed Mike Piazza had the City remove an underground oil tank and build a new sidewalk at his Cornell Street property. What's up guys?

Anonymous said...

Madsen, you are way off base. It is more of a personal thing with you and the Mayor. You even name the union leaders as who and what is wrong. The grievance is legit and will be won by the union as ruled by an impartial judge. You will be exposed as not understanding contract law. The Mayor will look bad again, and here we guys are winning the trivial timewaster contest again.

Oh yea, lose the stint work and next month you can explain the smelly trucks out at lunchtime lumbering along the busy streets and all during the workday.

How about doing something real?

Bill Berardi said...

Alderman Madsen,

Thanks for taking the time to organize this blog - you make a difference in our community.

Like you I suspect - we get hired and fired frequently. When our jobs are done - our stints are over. People only pay us when we work for them.

It is interesting that we scrutinize the employees who have the most physically dangerous,demanding and sometimes incorrectly demeaned positions.

We are all aware of many positions within government where one has a air-conditioned office or cubical, desk and computer terminal with internet access, telephone and no specific or assigned tasks to indicate that their work is done.

At least it is always clear whether our refuse is picked up and the job is done.

Anonymous said...

Walk a mile in my shoes Mike. Before you look like a complete ass for backing the Mayor on this one take a week off from your house building job and go to work for DPW. Do one day on each truck at the end of those seven days you will have a new found respect for stint workers.

By the way there are about 90 workers at DPW and only 21 are on stint. Quit miss leading the public.

Anonymous said...

Stay away from this issue because it is going to blow up in the Mayor,s face. Give him no wiggle room, let him be accountable for this all alone. I am sure Steve Gorsline has all ready told him its a bad idea or he would have done it 17 years ago.

Anonymous said...

I really hope this 8;00AM post isn't true cause this would be the tree trunk that brakes this dumb volunteer donkeys back!
Please investigate and let us know? THANKS...smitty

What the hell are we dealing with here!!!!!

Anonymous said...

City of Kingston Mayor James Sottile has asked the commmon council to give him their opinions on ending what is called a "stint" workday for the city sanitation workers. The "stint" workday works like this: They don't take breaks or linch, start real early in the morning and hustle off the streets as fast as they can. The reward for the workers is simple: They get to go home after they finish their route and make sure the trucks are taken care of. The reward for the city is: The giant sanitation trucks are not in every other businessmans way during the day, blocking the streets, and making stops at every address. This "stint" arrangement is not uncommon and makes all the sense in the world. Not every person will take on that job and this city has good workers on that stint shift too. The city knows that. Leave a win-win situation alone.

Just because the City decided to call workers back from their homes, after their "stint" ONCE , that is no reason to change the entire relationship between huge sanitation truck and average pressed for time citizen.

Mike P. Hein said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

The Mayor is looking for a scapegoat and I guess he's found one. I am sure when this doesn't work the way they think it will, he'll say Mike Madsen told me to do it.
"Stint" work benefits the city far more than the worker. If not Mayor Gallo would have gotten rid of it back in 1993.
I wonder what Steve Gorsline's opinion on stint. I think if it would have been a good thing he would come out and publicly say so.

Mike you should have sat this one out.

When your family builds homes do they bid by the job?
If they finish early do they refund the extra money you charge.

Mike Madsen said...

First: the Mike P Hein email address is a cute ruse to get a comical comment on a blog. Points for being clever.

Second: No-one thinks the Mayor listens to me. The premis that the Mayor has someone to point to is well...pointless. I just think the Mayor should take his time and study this issue, with our help, before reacting.
The public, outside of the workforce, sees the work ethic a different way than we do. Crews heading home early with full pay makes many of my 3,700 constituents uneasy. Im sure all nine of us hear this from time to time.

Thanks for all the comments. This one shook you all up a bit.

Anonymous said...

Mike i'm sure if you and your family were to give a home owner an estimate of 6 days to drywall their new house for x amount of dollars and you guys did the job in 3 or four, I don't think you will give them half their money back!!

Anonymous said...

You are the only alderman i see on the streets of kingston, WHERE are the others? You are the only one that goes up to the DPW. Where is ANN MARIE? She is listed as the leison between the DPW and the Mayor. Why did't she know about this going on? The way the city is acting about this whole thing our young girls are watching. They will not feel safe to work for the city. Our woman are not safe on the jobs and young girls see that. The woman of this city have to join together and keep our young girls safe. The rape in kingston schools, the drink in the face, the woman of DPW where are the real man to be leaders and protect the woman of this city? This is a sick town thats why our young people are leaving? DOES'T ANYONE SEE THIS. THE YOUNG GIRLS DO, WE NEED TO BE TEACHING VALUES TO THE YOUNG PEOPLE, NOT LETS ABUSE THE WOMAN OF THE CITY.

Anonymous said...

maybe some one should look up what crews work stint its only the trash and recycle trucks the brush trucks work the full 8 hours maybe being a alderman you should of known that. but like other alderman no one checks before they speak

Anonymous said...

this is to 8:00am just to let you and every one else know there was no oil tank in the side walk i worked on that job it was a coal shaft where the steal beams were so rotted if something drove over it the side walk would collapse but there was no way a oil tank there just a big empty room with rotting steal.

Anonymous said...

does the city own the room,was the city liable,who found this room,who gave the goahead for dpw on private property,is the city billing the owner for t@m,this just doesn't make sense.

Anonymous said...

The DPW bosses are out of control,it's time to replace them all, just like it's time to replace the whole council,it's time to to put new people in charge of both places so we can finally get new and better results for our tax dollars.

Anonymous said...

Doing stint work in crowded places in Kingston after a certain time of the day is stupid. Can you imagine being stuck behind a trash-packer in uptown Kingston after 10am when cars are lined throughout the streets in the middle of the winter?

Come on.

Jimmy Sottile is just picking on 20+ hard working public servants who deserve a break and who deserve not to be picked on. In the end, the taxpayers will end up paying for Jimmy's bad idea.