The goal of the Department of Public Works is to “strive to deliver exceptional services, safety, and cost-effectiveness” to the town and its residents, Director Chris Gardner said as he provided an update to the Select Board this week about the department’s major functions and accomplishments.
“Our goal continues to be to keep residents safe and happy, and we thank Town Manager Philip Lemnios and the Select Board for providing us with the [resources] to keep this town beautiful and safe,” Gardner said.
Among the DPW’s biggest responsibilities are improving the town’s roads and stormwater drainage, performing snow and ice removal, maintaining Hull’s public parks and trash barrels, cemetery mowing and “perpetual care,” beach cleanups and seaweed pushback, caring for named street and veterans memorial signs, street sweeping, fixing potholes, performing emergency and scheduled tree trimming, making dune and dune opening repairs, and installing beach fences.
The DPW staff also fields calls from the police department, town officials, and residents, ranging from road debris issues to beach cleanups requests.
Following the presentation, Lemnios commented that Gardner had “undersold” his and the department’s role in responding to needs in the community.
“Chris always responds [when he’s asked to do something] and comes up with a solution that makes sense,” Lemnios said.
Board member Domenico Sestito acknowledged Gardner’s and the DPW crew’s efforts. “The passion and love for what you do is evident,” he said.
In response, Gardner said the DPW staff “puts their heart into [the work they do]. We try to go above and beyond to help whenever we can. … We have a rotating after-hours on-call system to provide services on an emergency basis for snow, downed trees, and other issues.”
Gardner expressed appreciation for the hard-working DPW staff for “meeting and exceeding the needs and wants of the town. After a [challenging] year and a half, we have stayed healthy, working, and available through the tough times,” he said. “We will continue to combat any challenges and make adjustments as we go along to ensure that our residents and staff are happy,” he said.
Lemnios said he intends to recommend additional staffing for the DPW in the FY24 budget.