More on long grass in the park

During the 2011 budget discussions, reductions were made to park’s maintenance staffing. Has this decision impacted staff’s ability to meet our turf 10 day standard or is weather the overwhelming factor here?

Reductions to staffing were made as part of the 2010 budget process—-we lost (10) students from our seasonal staffing complement, and then as part of the 2011 budget process (5) students were approved, of the (10) requested, to return us to our 2007 student numbers.

Along with the (5) students approved for 2011, we also received Council approval to convert (6) students to (6) six month contracts. The postings closed last week and I am working with H/R to secure these candidates. The six positions will be a great benefit to our turf mtc., sports fields and horticulture operations. Certainly not having the positions filled from the start of the season has impacted the operation with lost time due to illness, and vacation entitlement of full-time staff. Equipment downtime is being closely monitored to ensure the blades are spinning at every opportunity. However, the bottom line is the weather is the overwhelming factor:

Rain, rain, most of May
With 18 days of rain this month, Toronto residents are ready to say good riddance to May.
Phillips told CP24 that Toronto has doubled its average rainfall total for the month. As of early Thursday, May 26th, 118.6 mm has fallen on the city.
“We just need to forget May,” Phillips said.
Normally, only 59 mm of rain falls in the first 25 days of May, he said.
Phillips said it is unlikely the city will break the monthly rainfall record of 208.6 mm, which was set in May of 1942.

I’ve included for your reference additional hyperlinks for area municipalities dealing with the same turf conditions—there are aside from the hyperlinks sent last week:–23

Please note, we’ve had to cut some our sports fields with small 72” type mowers as the larger mowing equipment is too heavy and will destroy the turf. As well, the mowers are running over some fields 3x in order to minimize the windrows. Some sports fields are closed due to standing water—we have not been able to maintain them, i.e, Peter Misersky Park soccer field.   Staff