Union warns against Rocky council's partnership with Propel

REDUCED services and possible redundancies are on the cards if the Rockhampton Regional Council enters into a partnership with Propel, The Services Union warned yesterday.

TSU acting secretary Neil Henderson said it was "troubling" that the council was considering another major structural change less than three months on from the upheaval created by de-amalgamation.

"The proposal to consider effectively outsourcing core council work to Propel Partnerships, a south-east Queensland company, has come as a considerable shock," he said.

"The council could deliver the same outcome without having to worry employees about their job security."

Rockhampton Mayor Margaret Strelow revealed last year the council's plan to set up a partnership with Propel, a company that specialises in making local government operations more efficient.

Under the plan, Propel would form a company with the council and staff would remain council employees.

Mr Henderson said that while Propel claimed the partnership would improve workplace efficiency, the union believed the council would receive little to no benefit.

"The proposed changes will have a direct and negative effect on the quality of customer service, the local interface of the business, and staff morale," he said.

"We have seen a similar model adopted at Ipswich City Council.

"It has resulted in drastic staff reductions, increased staff turnover, and inefficient performance monitoring.

"None of the available evidence is to the contrary."

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