The Greene County Highway Department works to fill summer job openings

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GREENE COUNTY, Mo. (KY3/KSPR) - The Greene County Highway Department is working to fill close to a dozen summer maintenance positions. This as the department climbs up on their busiest time of year.

Rick Artman, Administrator for the Greene County Highway Department, said it's been increasingly difficult to fill seasonal positions over the past two years. He said it's because of the low unemployment rate, explaining everyone is fighting for the same workers.

The department's staff typically measures about 120 people. Each March, they try and bring on an additional 20 workers to work 1,000 hours through the fall. Artman said the main job is mowing the county right-of-ways, something that is especially important this season. "With the moisture that we've had this year and the warmer temperatures, grass has really accelerated the growing and it's difficult to get this under control," said Artman.

Artman explained the typical mowing rotation is anywhere from four to six weeks. If the department can't fill their mowing positions, a longer rotation can cause some safety concerns. "We want to make sure we have sight-distance for drivers as they pull up to a stop sign or some type of a traffic controlled condition,"began Artman. He assured the community safety is their top priority.

Being short-handed can also delay other projects. "If we don't have enough people to fill these positions, our option is to pull someone off of a normal crew and put them on a piece of equipment," he said. "That's going to stifle that crew's output as well."

Artman encouraged anyone who is looking to earn a little extra cash this summer to apply. The Administrative Services Manager, Crystal Richards, said while they prefer a CDL license it is not required. The only real requirement is that applicants must be 18-years-old and have a high school diploma or equivalent.

Richards said one perk of these seasonal jobs is their potential to become full-time. "When we are needing a full-time person we do look at our seasonal spots first and try to pull from there," she said. "We know their work ethic and they kind of know the work already so we try to do that when we can."

Those interested need to have a valid email address to apply. The department only accepts online applications.