Is there a rumor you'd like tracked down? Rory Linnane answers some of the mysteries of life in Brookfield and helps solve everyday problems.
What do interns do for the city, and are they compensated?
Question: The subject of paying interns has been a popular topic in the news lately, with many companies coming under fire for not paying their interns. How does the city of Brookfield approach internships?
Answer: The city of Brookfield has been providing internships for several years now. Some are supplementary to the city's normal workload and more academic in nature, while others have been crucial to helping the city maintain services when staff has been cut, Human Resources Director James Zwerlein said. Those of the latter category are paid, while the others are not.
Many companies have been scrutinized recently for using unpaid internships, especially after a New York court ruling last year found that unpaid interns at Fox Searchlight Pictures were performing the work of regular employees, and therefore needed to be paid minimum wage under the Fair Labor Standards Act. This act, however, only applies to interns in the "for profit" private sector, exempting non-profits and governments.
However, Zwerlein said, the city has decided to pay its interns who provide work that is integral to a department, that the department would otherwise hire an employee to perform.
"We believe if people are doing actual work of the city that needs (to be) done, they should be paid for that," Zwerlein said.
The city's two paid interns this year are in the Department of Community Development, where the Common Council voted to cut a staff position from the budget this fiscal year. The interns pick up the slack.
One of the paid interns, Kimberly Sleider, is a master's student in urban planning at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She is working on creating a historical walking tour of the Village area of Brookfield, researching the history of various buildings and designing the pamphlets that will lead visitors through the tour.
The Community Development Department also has two unpaid interns, whose work is meant to be less integral to the city and more related to their studies.
Email Rory Linnane with your question at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Elm Grove Ask Now: Palmer's plans?
- Brookfield Ask Now: Should bicyclists be on pathways?
- Ask Now: Elected officials' time off?
- Brookfield Ask Now: Will the pathway on Pilgrim be paved?
- Ask Now: City's rummage sale rules?
- Ask Now: What ever happened to all the changes for Capitol Drive?
- Brookfield and Elm Grove Ask Now: When will BEGIN host more programs?
- Brookfield and Elm Grove Ask Now: Does Mayor Steve Ponto want to run for higher office?
- Brookfield Ask Now: How does the city attack garlic mustard weed?
- Brookfield and Elm Grove Ask Now: How can a young person help out at the humane society?
- Ask Now: Will there be a lighting test at Golf Parkway?
- Ask Now: How are city committee members assigned?
- Ask Now: Freeway interchange at Calhoun?
- Ask Now: More details about city voters?
- Ask Now: What's happening on Riverview Road?
- Ask Now: With all the Bluemound Road development, has the Village been forgotten?
- Brookfield and Elm Grove Ask Now: Are referendums for TIFs any closer?
- Ask Now: Where is the Elm Grove Library headed?
- Ask Now: Will Visit Brookfield use the Ruby farmhouse?
- Brookfield and Elm Grove Ask Now: What makes a left turn arrow appropriate?