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Aug 4, 2010 10:21 AMPublication: The Southampton Press

Throne-Holst delivers second State of the Town address

Aug 4, 2010 10:21 AM

Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst touted restructuring Town Hall as one of her key accomplishments in a state of the town address last Thursday—the second such speech she’s given since taking office six months ago.

Ms. Throne-Holst opened her speech to a roomful of town employees by recapping some of her administration’s work over the last three months. She honed in on her work with successfully negotiating two employee contracts—with the Patrolman’s Benevolent Association for the employees at Southampton Town Police Department, and with the Civil Services Employees Association.

Under the police contract, employees receive raises of slightly more than 2 percent in 2010 and 3 percent in 2011 and 2012, in exchange for a smaller increase, 1-percent, retroactive to 2009.

CSEA employees will receive a 1-percent raise each year in a contract spanning 2010-13.

“I am proud of these agreements, and these agreements would not have been possible without the partnership of both the PBA and the CSEA leadership, along with the support of the membership of both organizations,” Ms. Throne-Holst said.

The supervisor outlined new measures in place to achieve efficiency through reorganization. She mentioned two organizational studies currently under way at Town Hall. One is a study of the town’s employees and departments. It is slated to analyze potential efficiencies in processes and workflow. The other is a space utilization study.

A few ideas for further reorganization have been floated within several departments at Town Hall, Ms. Throne-Holst said, including Land Management, General Services, and at both the tax assessor’s and tax receiver’s offices.

In the assessor and receiver’s offices, Ms. Throne-Holst said, there is a potential to share clerical staff since their busiest times of the year do not coincide. The supervisor declined to offer specifics for plans to revamp the Land Management Department, noting she would like to hold off until results of the organizational study are available. But she did say the division of Human Resources will be placed under the purview of the Town Supervisor and the Town Council instead of General Services.

Ms. Throne-Holst also stressed the need to downsize the work force at Town Hall, but emphasized that she wants to achieve that goal primarily through attrition. She focused a part of her speech on a state early retirement incentive the Town Board is now considering, a measure that could produce “the potential for substantive savings to the town over the next several years,” she said.

“These opportunities come along only very rarely and where it affords both the opportunity for eligible employees to consider retirement early and at an advantage and without penalty, and gives the municipality the opportunity to effectuate much needed cost savings,” she said.

A new budget process is a reform that Ms. Throne-Holst also highlighted, noting that this year’s budget meetings with department heads began earlier than usual—in June instead of August—and incorporate two-year projections.

The next state of the town address will occur on September 30, when Ms. Throne-Holst is expected to unveil the tentative 2011 budget.

“The budget will reflect, among many things, a prioritized capital projects plan, revised department summaries and goals, and elements of an improved service model and organizational charts,” the supervisor said. “It will also provide more 
opportunity for the public to comment.”

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Anna, if you do your research, you will find that your land management staff is 3 times the size than it was 15 years ago and takes in nearly one half of the permits. You do the math. DOWN SIZE Land management.
By Yearround Resident (23), Southampton on Aug 8, 10 10:58 AM
The supervisor would like to report that the unholy alliance between the board, the planning commission and developers is as strong as ever.
By progressnow (556), sag harbor on Aug 8, 10 12:37 PM
Dump Thiele!
Dump LaValle!
Dump Levy!
Dump Bishop!
By uncleronk (136), southold on Aug 10, 10 10:22 AM
1 member liked this comment
By SirHampton (60), quogue on Aug 12, 10 7:41 AM
1 member liked this comment