I felt like killing Feeley’ staffer

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A Queenstown council staffer facing the loss of their job says no one feels like doing much work right now. 

The staffer, whose job has been recommended for the chop, says the mood after Tuesday’s announcement to staff of proposed position cuts and sweeping changes across council’s structure is very sad. 

“It’s pretty horrible. Nobody really particularly wants to do much work at the moment. A lot are worried – I know of one buying an apartment in the next couple of weeks, another one’s due to have a baby any day. 

“We received an email from [council chief executive] Adam Feeley last week and some of the wording gave us an indication that it was going to be quite a big cut to staff so we were sort of prepared … we sort of knew that, yes, there’d be some changes. 

The staffer adds: “I could’ve killed him this morning – he said at the meeting ‘QLDC’s not actually a happy place at the moment but with all these changes and things it will be much happier’ and I felt like saying to him, ‘look, [our CCO] is a happy place to work, we’re all fine, just leave us alone’. 

The staffer doesn’t feel feedback will be listened to: “I think they’ve made their decision.” 

In a statement yesterday, Feeley says: “… staff input is a vital part of the process. Our staff has a coalface perspective that needs to be factored in.” 

Feeley, in a note to all staff at the beginning of the consultation document outlining proposed changes, repeats feedback will be considered before he makes final decisions. 

Feeley adds he’s aware how unsettling the process can be and tells staff to contact him direct with questions or concerns. 

Later, the document notes: “Please be aware consultation is not the same as negotiation or reaching agreement. 

The chief executive of QLDC will consider your views, but has the right to make final decisions.” 

Overall, Feeley says the draft’s an important first step towards reintegration of council operations to provide “improved, faster and better value services”. 

Appointments to new jobs are expected to be made in June/July.