While discussing future budgets at a January Riverside County Board of Supervisors meeting, County Executive Officer George Johnson said he has imposed a hiring freeze countywide. Only he can grant exceptions to the freeze.
Some, especially the Friends of San Jacinto Mountain County Parks, worried that this countywide hiring freeze would prevent the hiring of a new park interpreter at the Idyllwild Nature Center. The position became vacant in December, when Amanda Allen left, but the Riverside County Regional Park and Open Space has gotten approval to do some hiring, including this position.
Kyla Brown, assistant director for the Park and Open-Space District and a certified park and recreation executive, said in a email, “While the freeze was imposed, our district just got approval to proceed with filling positions. We hope to have the position filled as quickly as possible.”
Recently the Friends of SJMCP distributed an email to its members alerting them of the vacancy and soliciting more volunteers to help at the Nature Center.
“This means that the vacant Park Interpreter position at the Idyllwild Nature Center will not be filled for the foreseeable future. The current county employees at the Nature Center are doing the best they can to accommodate the visiting guests, school groups, and other activities, but the need for volunteers has never been greater.”
Johnson also planned to discuss the budget’s condition and its dwindling stability with the leadership of all of the county’s labor and union organizations.
I was sorry to see Amanda leave. I hope the new interpreter will follow in the tradition of previous interpreters and continue with the support of the Friends to promote the wonderful events at the Nature Center.