The Green Hopes of a Short Workweek

Grand Prairie tries out four-day workweek in municipal courthouse

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    TK
    Grand Prairie is experimenting with a four-day workweek in hopes that it will save money and energy.

    Grand Prairie is experimenting with a four-day workweek in hopes that it will save money and energy.

    The city's municipal courthouse closes on Fridays, and employees work four 10-hour days Monday through Thursday.

    "So now we're open from 7 to 6 each day," said Steven Cherry, court director.

    Grand Prairie Experiments With Shortened Workweek

    [DFW] Grand Prairie Experiments With Shortened Workweek
    Grand Prairie is trying out a four-day workweek in hopes that it will save money and energy.

    The courthouse is the first department in the city to try the four-day concept on for size. Cherry said the city got the idea from Utah's state government.

    "Their entire state government went to a 10-hour work day for energy conservation," he said.

    Cherry said the city will need time to determine if the shortened work week is cost-effective.

    "I don't think that we've felt the complete heat of the summer time, (and) we haven't felt the complete impact of cold weather for winter with heating and air conditioning, so I think we'll re-evaluate after a year to see if its really helping us," he said.

    Employees have had two months so far to adjust to the new hours.

    City Marshal Ricky DeAx, who spends most of day on his feet inside the courtroom, said he's already getting used to it.

    "I didn't know if I could stand up for such a long time, but eventually I started to adjust to it and it's been real good for me," he said.

    And there are perks to having a three-day weekend every week.

    "I got to go to the bank, groceries and went home and relaxed and didn't know what to do with my Saturday," said Gilda Garza, courthouse senior assistant.

    Cherry said everyone is "very excited" once Thursday rolls around.

    "Our little slogan around here is TGIT; it's no longer TGIF," he said.

    The city said it will consider expanding the four-day workweek to other departments if the municipal courthouse's experiment is successful.

    "I kind of wish it wouldn't go away, but we'll see how it works out," Garza said.