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Scugog Township moving forward with a service delivery review

DAN CEARNS, The Standard

SCUGOG: The Township of Scugog is moving forward with a review of its municipal services.

At a Special Council meeting on Wednesday, June 7th, councillors saw a report from Carol Coleman, the Township's Director of Public Works and Infrastructure, which advised council that the Township had awarded the contract for a service delivery and organizational review to Blackline Consulting.

"The overall goal of the Service Delivery and Organizational Review (SDOR) is to provide an objective view of services to better understand the municipal services and service levels delivered by Scugog and establish the right level and mix of services to ensure the effective delivery of services that meet the expectations of our residents," the report explained. "The SDOR will accomplish this by investigating current services, service levels and their delivery approach, the resources available, identifying potential changes to service delivery methods and/or service levels and recommending changes that will improve efficiency or effectiveness across the Corporation."

Ms. Coleman spoke highly of the consultant an evaluation committee, made up of Directors from the Community Services, Corporate Services, Finance and Public Works and Infrastructure Services departments, selected.

"They have extensive experience in service delivery and organizational reviews. In the past ten years, they have worked with over 50 Ontario municipalities, which include upper-tier, lower-tier and single-tier municipalities. Some examples are Whitby, Ajax, Cobourg [and] Caledon."

Mayor Wilma Wotten said this review would give councillors a better understanding "of what is out there, what we need to look at moving forward," and how to make the best choices for the municipality.

Ward 2 Councillor Janna Guido stated she felt a council member should have been on the evaluation committee for this project. "I would have thought a member of council, if not the Mayor, would've been on this committee, seeing as this was purely an ask of council."

CAO Ken Nix responded, pointing out that the Township's purchasing policy is supposed to be set by council but to act independently from council.

Mayor Wotten said she was "quite disappointed" the contract had been awarded prior to any discussion among council members about the candidates.

Councillor Guido made a motion to have a council member appointed to sit on a steering committee for this project. That motion was approved.

The Township has approved a budget of $100,000 for this project. Councillors are expecting to see an interim report on the progress of this review in early October.

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