Hamilton City Hall Credit: Joey Coleman

Mayor Fred Eisenberger revealed Thursday that the City of Hamilton is planning for its staff to return to offices later this fall.

“We’re intending to at some point between now and the end of the year, have our employees come back into the workplace, for those that are working from home.”

The City Manager’s Office is being secretive about its return to office plan. Contacts in the City Hall orbit have told me the return to office plan would come to Council in late October or early November.

Hamilton’s downtown businesses are struggling without government employees working downtown. Most restaurants are no longer open for lunch. Nations Fresh’s food court remains closed.

The closed food courts at Nations Fresh in Hamilton’s Jackson Square in late August 2021

Manager-level and above city staffers spend good money in the various restaurants and cafes. The city’s workers are important customers for the many fast food outlets and coffee shops.

The longer city staff are working from home (or those working in offices brown bag their lunch), the more service businesses will close due to COVID.

Will enough city staff be vaccinated, and the COVID virus controlled enough, for the City to return to offices in November or December?

Many are awaiting the answer to that question.