I am an employee of the Department of Housing Parks and Recreation and have become upset at the grilling given to Commissioner Designee St. Clair Williams. I came into the Department on the tail end of former commissioner Hobson's tenure and all I heard about him was he spent too much time in St.Thomas, and always went back to the Senate Budget hearings saying "we can do more with less."
Before Commissioner Hobson, the Department had crews at all of the facilities we maintain. We even had a full construction crew including plumbers and electricans. This is not the case now. With all the people who have retired, passed on, or have gone on to other positions. These positions have not been filled. I heard that former senator Bert Bryan was lamenting the condition of the parks in Frederiksted let the people know the facts.
Where I work in Frederiksted we have a crew of three groundskeepers and a supervisor, we three maintain the Paul. E Joseph ball park, Fort Frederik Beach, the basketball court and tennis court, the Medre Cummings children's park, the waterfront and the Vincent Mason Coral Resort, and when needed we leave Frederiksted to assist other crews at either the LBJ housing community, Cramers Park or the lagoon.
I personally find myself getting to work at 6 a.m. to cut the grass on the waterfront (when asked by my supervisor) to avoid inconviencing people who either walk or run on the waterfront in the morning. We do not do this for the great pay, but the dedication to keep the parks and public areas in Frederiksted in good condition for the people of Frederiksted. We have received compliments from the public on how we keep the parks and appreciate them all.
During Commissioner Designee Williams tenure we have received a new garbage truck to pick up trash at our facilities, a front-end loader with a brush hog for large cutting jobs, several new zero turn mowers and a dump truck to assist in moving materials. And there are people awaiting the NOPA process to be hired to fill the present manpower shortage.
It is my humble opinion that Mr. Williams would be the best choice as Commissioner because he listens to the people around him, and knows what this department needs to get the job we have been given to be done.
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