December 23, 2004

MoDOT Closes Rutledge Maintenance Facility

In an effort to streamline local maintenance work and become more efficient, the Missouri Department of Transportation has closed its facility in Rutledge and transferred the three remaining employees from the site to the Memphis Maintenance Facility.

The Rutledge facility is closed and the employees are now permanently reporting to the Memphis facility, said MoDOTs Marisa Brown.

According to Brown, MoDOT received a petition signed by roughly 40 residents in the area asking MoDOT to consider keeping it open. The primary concern from the petition had to do with snow removal.

We do not anticipate area residents seeing a significant difference in the road conditions during the winter, Brown said. Snow removal is only about 10 percent of our entire maintenance operation, and much of the other 90 percent of our operations require teams consisting of at least 6 people. Rutledge was down to three people since the supervisor was hired at Memphis this fall and already worked with the Memphis crews on a regular basis.

District Engineer Kirk Juranas indicated that MoDOT had been considering consolidating the Rutledge Maintenance Facility with another facility.

With increasing demands to be more efficient, coupled with MoDOTs safety philosophy, we are committed to identifying opportunities to become more efficient and safe in regards to maintenance work, Juranas said. MoDOTs goal is to have at least six maintenance crew workers at each building to accomplish our commitment. Although some of our operations are handled by individuals, such as plowing snow and mowing, the majority of our highway maintenance operations require team efforts of six or more employees. The employees from the Rutledge facility routinely work with the Memphis employees to achieve these operations.

Prior to closing, the Rutledge facility had just three employees. These employees were already reporting to the Memphis facility, then driving to the Rutledge building each morning to get a state vehicle to drive to Memphis.

By reassigning these employees, they will drive their own personal vehicles to Memphis, and we will be able to more efficiently operate because resources, such as equipment, tools, etc., will be consolidated, Juranas, said.

Even though the Rutledge building will no longer be the main site of MoDOT activity, the facility will be used as storage for some equipment, and the grounds will be used for salt and other material storage.

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