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Review underway to try and save tax dollars

On Monday night, city council got an idea of what is going to happen during the core services review. Sudbury’s KPMG has come in to look at every job and service offered by the city. The goal of the review is to find areas where council can save, and make, money.

Auditor Oscar Poloni says Timmins is a big organization, and in order to properly analyse every aspect, they have set up functional review teams.

“These review teams are selections from your staff, both management and non-management, union, and non-union,” explains Poloni. “That are going to help us to understand your organization; what you do, how things work, and what you would change.”

Poloni has already sat down with members of council, to see where their head is at in terms of the budget. He said the majority of council isn’t interested in changing up too much, unless there is a significant reason to do so. He says council’s interest is maintaining, or reducing, taxes.

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“The role of council is ultimately to decide what will and will not happen, coming from this. What we do, is we flag opportunities. And the opportunities are clearly that, there is the potential for you to make changes, so that you can enhance services or reduce money.”

On top on speaking with council, Poloni says they will also be consulting external stakeholders, like the BIA, the Chamber, and the Tax Payers Association, to get a feel for how residents think the city runs without talking to all 45, 000 people who live in Timmins.

“The reality is this: Almost everything that your residents do, from the moment they get up to the moment they go to bed, is touched by something that this city does,” says Poloni, referencing water, transit, and police. So the whole point in having the consultation with the external stakeholder groups is to give us some perspective on how people think the city operates, and how they’d like to see the city change.”

Poloni says KPMG won’t recommend anything to council, but will instead list the options on where money can be saved or made, and then let council decide. The review will go all summer, and a full report is expected by the fall.

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