City job fair for maintenance workers attracts hundreds

Published: Dec. 21, 2015 at 9:14 PM HST|Updated: Dec. 22, 2015 at 12:02 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - By Victoria Cuba

More than 200 people applied Monday for 25 temporary maintenance worker positions with the city.

The city held a job fair at Ala Moana Beach Park to attract and interview applicants. The fair continues Tuesday, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at McCoy Pavilion.

City officials said interest in the positions was much higher than expected.

"The earliest people were actually in line from 4 a.m. this morning," said Ross Sasamura, director and chief engineer of the city Department of Facility Maintenance.
The full-time positions pay $17.64 an hour.

Those hired will be on contract until the end June 2016, and may have their contracts extended if there is extra funding.

The city decided to hold the fair to address a shortage of maintenance workers and a growing problem with overgrown grass. For the past two years, only 15 city workers maintained a total area of 3.2 million square feet.

"We have a tremendous amount of work that we need to cover," said Sasamura. "And for the past two years, we've been managing the staff that we've had."
The Department of Facility Maintanence wants to hire workers that have prior experience in grounds keeping. Because they will be working on small areas, workers experienced in using string-line trimmers and weed whackers are preferred.

"The people that we employ are people that have to be used to hard work. They must enjoy working outdoors. They must not be afraid of getting dirty," said Sasamura. "And we like people that come to work every day."

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