Solving The Pain At The Pump With Four Day Work Weeks? - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

06/11/08 - Rusk County

Solving The Pain At The Pump With Four Day Work Weeks?

The pain at the pump is forcing more and more businesses to consider shortening their work week to save money.

KLTV 7 News' Lakeica Shockley shows you one East Texas courthouse that could be heading in that direction.


Empty - that could be what the Rusk County Courthouse parking lot looks like on Fridays. That's if some courthouse workers get their way.

"There's at least one or two people that each office has that are driving over 20  miles round trip every day, and that does hit the pocket book pretty hard."

Rusk County Clerk Joyce Lewis is trying to the County Commissioners to consider a four day work week. She says some employees want it, and some don't. "It's really about 50 to 50 people that want it, and people that don't want it. So, it's really controversial actually."

The people who are against it say they worry about who'll keep their kids the extra two hours daily the employees would be required to work daily. The people for it - like deputy clerk Brenda Shankles - says they are all for working four ten hour days. She says it'd save her $20 a week in gas.

"I'm driving about 30 miles round trip and it cost me about $68 to fill up, and it lasts maybe three days....It would help me with the money and the gas situation."

LeTourneau University switched to a four day work week about a month ago. Employee Janet Ragland drives 90 miles roundtrip commute. She says the university's decision has given some employees some much needed gas-price relief.

"They felt our pain. They understood these gas prices are hurting, and for me personally I'm saving around $50 a month."

As for Rusk County courthouse employees they say that even if they get their wish for four day work weeks, their main goal will still be to serve taxpayers. "We're still concerned about these taxpayers. We don't want to take away their hours to be able to come in and do business in the courthouse so there's a concern for both," says Lewis.

Rusk County says the four-day work week is just a possibility that needs more research. They also tell us that it has to be an action item on the commissioner agenda before being considered. As of right now, it's not on the agenda.

LaKecia Shockley, reporting. lshockley@kltv.com

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