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04/14/2005 ~ The Utility Board approved an increase in the total approved/authorized personnel positions from the existing 153 to 157 in order to hire four additional Line and Electrical Apprentices. Such an increase enables Keys Energy Services (KEYS) to prepare for future staffing concerns and, most importantly, to continue to provide the level of services its customers have come to expect.

“KEYS is experiencing increasing staffing pressure as skilled employees approach early retirement age and consider selling their homes and relocating away from Key West,” said KEYS General Manager & CEO Carl Jansen. He added that, “the most pressing area is in the Line and Electrical sections.”

Currently the Transmission & Distribution (T&D) department, which includes the Line and Electrical sections, is authorized 14 Journey Linemen and six Substation Electricians.

The present headcount is 18 with eight Journey Linemen, four Apprentice Linemen, and six Substation Electricians. Because of the scarcity of Journey Linemen and Substation Electricians willing to relocate to the Keys, KEYS Staff anticipates having to train Apprentices to fill these gaps.

Additionally, KEYS Staff is working with the Monroe County School Board to develop a junior-senior vocational program to address KEYS’ long-term needs. The School Board has indicated that having Apprentice positions available for graduates would be beneficial to their program.

In other business, the Board:

- Awarded Change Order #1 to the contract for janitorial services with Diversified Services Co., Inc., in the amount of $4,675.00.

- Awarded the contract for Hot Stick Testing, Bid #12-05, to Professional Services Industries, Inc., for an estimated annual cost of $7,000.00, their bid being the best bid complying with specifications.

- Awarded the purchase of handheld meter reading devices, Bid #14-05, to SWI Software Installed, Inc., in the amount of $34,817.44, their bid being the lowest and best bid complying with specifications, and declared existing handheld equipment as “Surplus”.

The regular meeting of the Utility Board took place at 5:00 p.m., April 13th, in the Louis Carbonell Board Room of the William Arnold Service Building, 1001 James Street, Key West.

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