City Council Preview – What’s on the Agenda for the July 19 Special Meeting?

Back during last year’s budget deliberations, there was a motion to combine investments from the City of Guelph and the Government of Ontario to hire a third-party auditor to conduct a service rationalization review. Several months later, the review has been complete, and in a special meeting of council, the horseshoe will consider the recommendations and how best to implement them.

NOTE #1: Delegates will be able to appear at this meeting via telephone or video, but you do have to register with the clerks office before 10 am on July 16. You can also submit written delegations and correspondences for agenda items.

NOTE #2: The meeting will be closed to the public, though it will be live-streamed on the City of Guelph’s website here.

CLOSED MEETING:

Service Rationalization Review: Closed – Before being introduced in the open session, council will cover the service rationalization review under section 239 (2)(b), (d) and (i) for “personal matters about an identifiable individual, including municipal or local board employees; labour relations or employee negotiations; and a trade secret or scientific, technical, commercial, financial or labour relations information, supplied in confidence to the municipality or local board, which, if disclosed, could reasonably be expected to prejudice significantly the competitive position or interfere significantly with the contractual or other negotiations of a person, group of persons, or organization.”

Service Rationalization Review -A third party review of the City of Guelph’s service delivery has identified 53 “opportunities” for improvement, and to make the delivery of those services more effective and efficient. According to the staff report, they have already begun working on 17 of the proposed initiatives, and in fact had started working on the items before they were brought to staff’s intention during the course of the review.

According to KPMG’s findings, there are eight projects with a combined 10 recommendations that they consider priorities and will likely have the most benefit to the City across various measurements, including:

*Increased digitization of City services.

*The creation of a customer relationship management (CRM) system like the 311 system used in other communities where people can phone 311 and get swift access to non-emergency municipal services.

*A review of the City’s development approval process with an eye to streamline operations and collaboration between various departments.

*A unified payment system across all City departments.

*A review of the user fee structure of all City services, from transit to parking to recreation.

* A review of the location of Paramedic Services across both Guelph and Wellington County. The report especially notes the fact that seven of the 10 stations are buildings leased by the City and are not purpose built for Paramedic Services.

*The centralization of back-office supports for the City’s partner boards and agencies like the Elliott Community, Guelph Junction Railway, the Guelph Public Library, and Guelph Police Service.

*More investment in resources to implement key provisions in the Community Plan concerning areas of equity, diversity, anti-racism, and Indigenous relations.

There are 26 project proposed in the review that are not on staff’s radar at all, and will have to be incorporated into future work plans according to council’s discretion. The City’s performance was measured across 149 key indicators and the list of recommendations was made with the intention of improving efficiency and effectiveness of service delivery.

Council will be asked to endorse an implementation plan for the eight main priorities, plus direct staff to develop future work plans and budgets to implement the remaining 26 recommendations.

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