The Lake Geneva Jaycees have decided to cancel the Venetian fest for 2020. Up until this past month they were optimistic about holding the festival because of the positive financial and economic impact it has on the city, but at last week’s meeting, they decided it wasn’t worth putting so many lives at risk. They are concerned because many local businesses have had to close temporarily recently because of the pandemic, and after seeing local implications of increased infection rates, they believe the best choice is to cancel the festival to help slow down the spread of the virus. The Jaycees are looking forward to making the Venetian Festival for 2021 the biggest and best festival ever, however.
The Riviera Beach staff is made up of predominately young students on summer break.
With the recent increase in job duties, the idea that pay should also increase is logical. The turnover in beach staff has been on the rise throughout the summer. Some think it’s due to the virus, but most (especially the employees) say it’s due to the increase of duties, long hot days, and low pay. In previous beach seasons, the beach staff was in charge of the beach and the safety of beachgoers. This season the staff is in charge of the beach, the beach patrons, garbage on the beach and in the parks, the Riviera bathrooms, and the bathrooms in Library and Flat Iron parks. This has more than doubled the duties and the pay has remained the same.
The personnel committee met last Tuesday and discussed this issue. The recommendation was made by Tom Earle, head of Lake Geneva Public Works Department, stating that he had overlooked the fact that responsibilities increased while pay stayed the same. The competition, or other employment opportunities available to the current beach employees, are offering a much higher hourly rate. Target is starting employees at fifteen an hour, most other larger stores such as Walmart and Aldi are starting employees at twelve to thirteen per hour, and local fast-food restaurants have similar starting rates. Currently, the beach staff makes anywhere from nine to eleven dollars an hour, depending on how long they have been employed with the city. The goal would bring them up to eleven forty-six to twelve eighty-two and hour. The city council agreed on the recommendation and the raise will be effective immediately. Let’s hope that most of the young people employed as lifeguards don’t mind cleaning toilets.
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