Stop the tram, we want to get off, say TIE staff
ALMOST the entire workforce at the city's beleaguered tram firm are said to have applied for voluntary redundancy amid fears over the company's future.
It is understood that around 50 staff want to leave TIE, which employs between 65 and 70 people in total.
Last month the Evening News reported council plans to trim costs at TIE by making around half the staff redundant.
But since then a long-awaited report on the truncated line has indicated plans to further sideline the arms-length firm in the delivery of the over-budget and long overdue project.
TIE has seen a number of high-profile departures in recent weeks, including its chief executive, Richard Jeffrey, and director of communications, Mandy Haeburn-Little, who are understood to have been paid nearly 300,000 a year between them.
The company today refused to comment on the redundancy process, but the Evening News understands that around 50 employees are looking to leave.
Earlier this year TIE reacted angrily to claims that staff morale had hit rock bottom, with the majority of employees trying to get out of the company. One former member of staff said: "There's a lot of unhappy people there.
"The people who run TIE are on enormous salaries, upwards of 120,000, 130,000 or 150,000. If you're in a job like that maybe it's not as bad as when you're taking home a more average salary."
Deputy council leader Steve Cardownie said "It doesn't surprise me - TIE's days are numbered. It's not before time - it's been in existence for too long.
"Questions have to be asked about the four council directors on the board, about their role and what they have done.
"They have done the council a disservice. Why did they not alert us to the problems years ago?"
Sources close to the project had originally suggested that TIE's project managers would be among the first to go when the redundancy plans were announced last month.
One insider said: "There's no need for so many project managers. You would have one guy drilling in a hole and two guys standing over him watching."
A spokesman for TIE today refused to comment on the applications for voluntary redundancy, saying they were "personal HR matters".
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