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The original item was published from 7/1/2022 2:22:12 PM to 12/2/2022 12:00:01 AM.

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Marketing & Communications

Posted on: July 1, 2022

[ARCHIVED] City Taking Steps To Improve Delivery of Services

City officials are placing renewed emphasis on holding city crews accountable for meeting productivity standards as part of a broad effort to improve the delivery of services that have suffered from supply and personnel shortages.

The collection of brush has been particularly impacted. The city has established weekly benchmarks for collection crews, says Johnnie Taylor, the assistant city manager who oversees the Sanitation Department. “Our goal is to ensure that the crews we have in the field are productive,” Taylor said.  “Supervisors are checking tonnage and production daily and are submitting reports each day that are reviewed by the department head. That said, circumstances may arise that temporarily hamper our ability to meet these standards.”

Taylor added that overtime has been authorized when needed, especially when storms lead to a greater volume of brush set out for collection.

Assistant City Manager Aaron King, who oversees Field Operations and Utilities, says those two departments are assessing calls for service daily and prioritizing their response to ensure that the most urgent calls are addressed.

The 2022-23 budget, approved June 21, includes $22 million to replace aging city vehicles and equipment that are prone to breaking down. City staff hope that this will address a backlog of vehicles and equipment that are out of service while awaiting repairs. 

The budget also funds three news positions for a rapid response crew to address housing and sanitation code violations, with a priority on illegal dumping. The crew will allow the city to clean up illegal dumping immediately while maintaining its ability to meet the daily workload for other code enforcement services.

To address on-going personnel shortages, the city has instituted signing incentives for such hard-to-fill positions as equipment operators and engineers. It also has implemented a referral program that pays incentives when city employees refer others who accept jobs with the city.

City Manager Lee Garrity said that despite personnel and equipment issues, the city is committed to finding ways to provide city residents with the services they should expect. “Our mission statement calls for us to deliver quality, affordable services that ensure the health, safety, and wellbeing of our citizens,” Garrity said. “We are doing our best to identify creative ways to fulfill this mandate, and we will continue on this path as long as necessary.”


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