City Council has received phase two of the operational review from consultant, KPMG. The report looks at nine City business units to identify potential areas of opportunity for efficiencies, cost improvement, innovation and reinvestment.
Phase two takes an in-depth look at opportunities for service changes in the community, internal structure changes and areas for cost savings while considering the impact of COVID-19 on City operations. The review also offers comparisons from other municipalities and takes into account the expertise of the KPMG team and input from City Council, staff and stakeholders.
"The operational review was a directive of Council as a way to help us make more informed budgeting decisions," says City Councillor, Jeff Coffman. "We certainly couldn't have predicted a world-wide pandemic - and it may have impacted our ability to move forward on some of our phase 1 opportunities - but given what we are now facing, the timing of this phase two report couldn't be better. It will influence decisions we make going forward, which will have a significant impact on how well we recover from COVID-19."
Phase two of the operational review was undertaken between December 2019 and May 2020. The report provides key findings and opportunities related to Water and Wastewater, Electric Utility, Utility Services, Waste and Recycling, Transportation, Infrastructure Administration, Parks, Fleet Services and the Galt Museum.
"Between the two phases of the operational review there are close to 90 opportunities to explore," says City Manager, Craig Dalton. "Several of the phase one opportunities are already being actioned but our goal now is to look at everything we have and work with Council to prioritize, plan and set timelines for how we move forward."
"These reports provide us with great information, but that doesn't do us any good if the ideas sit on a shelf. We're focused on actioning these opportunities and reporting back to the community in a transparent way," says Councillor Coffman. "City Council has directed the City Manager to look at the opportunities in both phases and come back with an implementation plan by August 10. We look forward to seeing that plan and continuing to make changes that will help build financial flexibility for the City."
In November 2018, City Council unanimously approved a resolution instructing Administration to conduct an operational review of all City operations.
November 18, 2019, City Council received the Phase 1 report which was broken into two sections. Section one included a general review of all City departments as well as comprehensive reviews of selected departments including: Real Estate and Land Development, Integrated Risk Management, Information Technology Services, Human Resources, Recreation and Culture, Lethbridge Transit, ENMAX Centre and Facility Services.
At the November 25 City Council meeting, a number of resolutions were approved stemming from the opportunities in the phase one report.
The City of Lethbridge is now 18 months into the three-year operational review process. The areas of focus for phase three are currently being confirmed and the next report is expected to be complete by November of 2020.
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City of Lethbridge