Waldo is there, you know it because you can eventually find him. So, the question has now become, “Where’s Josh?” So, this story could have easily gone under “Rumor Has It…” but we figured we post the story straight from the source.
Last year our immediate family was met with many medical challenges including several surgeries. When November came around it was time to renew our health insurance. Well, thanks to Obamacare the least expensive premium for our family was $1700 per month (that was for a high deductible plan with very little coverage). Needless to say, there was no way we could afford this. Time for Plan B.
Josh was offered a position with the City of Prescott as their Landscape Coordinator. This job came with full benefits. Plan B was now in place. Our family had to make the move to Chino Valley to allow Josh to take this position. We now had much needed health insurance, but this meant a big move for our family while still owing Festival Landscaping.
What about Festival Landscaping? Well, that’s when Chris Johnson stepped in and UP! This amazing young man has been running the field operations of Festival Landscaping since last December. Chris has been with our company for 4 years. He knows this business inside and out. We still run the bookkeeping and scheduling portions of the business, and we help Chris troubleshoot whenever necessary. But he is our #1, go-to guy!
What else has been going on? Well, for starters January 1st the minimum wage went up to $10/hr. Did this effect us? YES, greatly. First, this change now means that employees can go scoop ice cream for $10 an hour instead of doing landscape maintenance. When minimum wage was $8.05 and we offered $10 – $11 an hour to do entry level landscaping, it was much easier to find employees. Now, these workers are few and far between. I mean really, who would want to work in 120 degree weather when they can pack groceries or take money at a drive thru window for the same wage!
Second, this means that our pricing will increase slightly as we must provide a more competitive wage to our employees so they’ll have incentive to work in a difficult field.
We have Chris Johnson, who’s been with us for 4 years, and Bryan Peralta, who’s been with us for 3 years. We recently hired Gilbert Guerra who has many years of experience and is doing a fantastic job! We’re working to rebuild another crew but that is proving challenging. We truly appreciate everyone’s patience as we move forward. The nice part of this process is that everyone now has Chris Johnson visiting their property. If you haven’t yet met him, prepare to be amazed! He’s incredibly kind and beyond skilled as a landscaper.