Jeffrey Caldwell 804-786-2715
April 22, 2010
VDOT COMPLETES EMPLOYEE REDUCTIONS AND LAUNCHES REORGANIZATION ACTIVITIES
Additional Related Business Changes Implemented April 26
RICHMOND — The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) will complete major portions of its reorganization this week in order to reach a mandated staffing reduction to 7,500 full-time employees by July 1, 2010, and to streamline the way it does business around the commonwealth.
VDOT’s restructuring program called the Blueprint for the Future — to be implemented beginning April 26 — also changes business practices and alters the way citizens, developers, localities, businesses and transportation industry contacts will do business with the agency. These scheduled actions include:
- Consolidating 15 residency offices around the state and expanding the geographic scope of our remaining 29 residency offices
- Transitioning customer service activities from area headquarters and residencies to a coordinated customer service center
- Reorganizing and downsizing VDOT’s land-use, permitting, construction and project development activities to our district offices
“April will be a challenging time at VDOT as we embark on the final stages of our year-long downsizing and restructuring effort,” said Acting Commissioner Gregory Whirley. “VDOT is undertaking a fundamental change in the way we do business as we streamline operations and address reductions in staffing and funding. Although these changes are significant, we will not stray from our mission to plan, build, operate and maintain a safe and efficient transportation system for the citizens of the commonwealth.”
In January, VDOT informed 632 employees that their positions would be affected by this reorganization. VDOT has worked in the ensuing months to identify placement opportunities for employees. On April 24, approximately 360 employees will leave the agency, closing out the final of three stages of employee reductions announced in late 2008. Of that group, 235 affected employees elected to leave the agency without seeking placement opportunities.
“We have worked hard to provide options for those employees affected by this change and adjust our staffing while simultaneously meeting the business needs that have arisen as part of this reorganization,” said Whirley. “Through the strategic use of allowing employees to substitute themselves in place of another affected employee, and through diligent work to match affected employees with vacancies and other opportunities within VDOT, only a small number of staff who wanted to stay at VDOT —approximately 35 — will leave on April 24.”
The agency has achieved its legislated goal of reducing in size by approximately 1,000 full-time and 450 part-time employees since September 2008 as VDOT continues to address a $4.6 billion revenue shortfall.
Responding to emergencies and providing needed maintenance of Virginia’s existing roads will remain a top priority. Therefore, the focus of residency offices will change to oversee only maintenance and emergency response activities. The geographic responsibilities of many residency offices are also expanding. The residency consolidations provide fewer administrative and management positions, which will distribute 7,500 available staff positions to better support front-line operations and provide flexibility to use these consolidated offices for other purposes.
For a map depicting those residencies which will be closed and the new boundaries of our remaining residency offices, visit http://www.virginiadot.org/about_vdot/blueprint_changes.asp
VDOT will work with partners, vendors, customers and citizens to redefine how the agency provides customer service. Traditional methods of contacting local VDOT offices will change. There will be fewer contact points for citizens when they request assistance. VDOT will endeavor to provide timely, effective service similar to what citizens have come to expect from us, but will do so from fewer locations.
We will also soon establish a customer service center to provide a one-stop shop for citizens to report road hazards, find information and request assistance from VDOT. No longer will citizens have to track down contact numbers for VDOT offices by figuring out which area headquarters, residency and district they belong to. One call to 1-800-367-7623 will address their needs.
The full customer service center will open in July to handle all incoming calls from citizens, with a scaled service beginning April 26, to assist customers who typically call area headquarters or those 15 residencies being consolidated. Business partners, developers and local governments will continue to work directly with key subject-matter experts within the agency, but initial inquiries and citizen interaction will be shifted to the customer service center.
For more information about these changes, visit www.VirginiaDOT.org
Information in VDOT news releases was accurate at the time the release was published. For the most current information about projects or programs, please visit the project or program Web pages. You may find those by searching by keyword in the search Virginia DOT box above.