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City service review ongoing

First analysis of operations since 1997

A third party review of City of Powell River’s services and operations is ongoing to investigate effectiveness and efficiency within the organization.

This is the first time since 1997 the city has undergone such a review, which at that time was conducted by outside consultant George B. Cuff and Associates Ltd. This time around, the management consulting firm Helios Group, based out of Vancouver, will conduct the review.

Stan Westby, chief administrative officer with the city, said the reviews are a good idea on a periodic basis and that they have been advised to undertake them more frequently, around every five years. Westby would not speculate on the outcome of the review but expressed belief that in general the city is run well.

“I think we’re a good organization that has been working hard to be as efficient and effective as we could possibly be,” said Westby. “If we get some help to improve on that, so much the better.”

According to a press release, Helios will examine discretionary business activities that “should be considered compulsory.” This involves comparing the city’s services and business activities with similarly sized municipalities and “determining the best organizational structure and resource level for municipal administration.”

Helios began the review by meeting with council in late July. Council, management and city staff will take part in interviews for the review, which will run until the end of October. Any recommendations will be “evidenced-based and rely on objective analysis,” according to the press release.

“An independent service review will assist us in focusing on our strategic priorities and achieving community sustainability,” said Mayor Stewart Alsgard in the press release. “We look forward to the results of this process.”

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