Today, before the Budget and Finance Committee of the SF Board of Supervisors, the Department of Public Works through its Director Ed Reiskin and, the Recreation and Parks Department through General Manger Phil Ginsburg, presented ideas to the three member group to jump-start the season's budget discussions.
Of particular interest to Local 261 and its many partners throughout the City, was a developing discussion related to California State certified Horticultural Apprenticeship that would not replace existing workers, but rather would elevate the professional standards of the Gardening staff as a whole, create real career opportunities for local residents, and through the City College coursework and the joint administration save money for each Department in dire economic times. "A win, win, win, that started at our own Laborers' Public Employee City Committee level," stated Local 261 member John Raulli during his comments at the meeting. Union members can continue to get up to date information on the progress of the program and other matters affecting the unit related to the budget process at the next City Committee meeting. Adrian Field, Theresa Foglio, Nikki Mixon, Mark Roumbanis, John Raulli, and Apprenticeship Chair Joan Vellutini will continue the sustained effort through adoption.