County wants to lessen greenhouse gas emissions by changing up where and when employees work

Flexible working hours and telecommuting would keep county workers out of their cars and help keep the air cleaner, county supervisors believe. They are instructing their staff to come up with a way to make both things happen.

On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors will direct its staff to create a countywide telecommute plan as well as a flexible work schedule for the county’s 2,500 employees.

The impetus for the plan is the passage of the state Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. The act – AB 32 – requires a 25 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 levels by 2020 and an 80 percent reduction by 2050.

According to a staff report from administrative analyst Dan Buckshi, 67 percent of county government greenhouse gas emissions are related to employee commutes to and from work.

Buckshi wrote that alternative work schedules could be implemented more quickly than the more comprehensive plans -- also under study in the county’s Planning and Building Department -- to combat reduce greenhouse gases.

Telecommuting would allow employees to work from home or at other locations that would keep them from driving long distances in the far-flung county.

--Bob Cuddy