Friday, March 7, 2014

2013/2014 Budget and Consolidation of the Coleman/Blairmore Shops

I have received a number of calls regarding the following two issues.

1) The 2014 budget:

I'm sure that almost everybody is aware of the changes that we have gone through at the administrative level in the last four months.
The CAO we hired in mid December Sheldon Steinke has been working very hard to stay on top of the day to day operation of the municipality, deal with all the legacy issues we were left. In addition prepare the budget for 2014.
Keeping in mind that we will not have a Director of Finance and Public Works in place until at the earliest late April.
We had a budget preparation meeting on Feb 27, a Capital Budget meeting March 6, and will be dealing with the Operational Budget on March 22 in Council Chambers from 9:30am to 4:30pm.

If you would like to look at the 2013 budget in detail to get a sense of what the municipality brings in and spends on your behave you can by going to the following address  start on Page 14 to 77 of the package.

2) Consolidation of the Coleman/Blairmore shops

I have been asked about the savings realized by the Municipality in consolidating the Coleman/Blairmore shops. I requested of our previous Public Works Director for the information that was used to justify consolidating the two shops, for a breakdown of the efficiency and dollar savings realized. The following is what was presented to council on Pages 81-82. 


Anonymous said...

consolidation of the shops seems like a no-brainer.

sell the buildings and invest the money into something that will pay dividends for the shareholders (taxpayers)

Anonymous said...

So now that your on council, if this is a money saver, does that mean your ok with it? Tell us what changes you will be making based on the Russel Farmer report.

Crowsnest Pass Home said...

Several comments in reply to the consolidation of the shops.

First of all if you agree with what was done and buy all the arguments to justify merging Blairmore/Coleman then wouldn't those same arguments make sense in regards to the Hillcrest shop. Blairmore to Coleman and Blairmore to Hillcrest are almost the exact same distance.

Next if you read the letter from administration in response to my question, can you identify one area where it lays out the anticipated savings or inefficiencies that were eliminated?.
I'm a numbers guy show me where and how much dollars were saved and I will be all ears.

Next from a practical point of view, and certainly the last week as proven it. Does anybody still think we have too much snow plowing equipment?

We have a situation now where operators meet in Blairmore, then climb in a pickup and drive back to Coleman to start their day? Does that make sense? if yes then why not do the same with the Hillcrest operators?

Next equipment we plain and simple don't have any more storage capacity in Blairmore. Where would we park the equipment from Coleman and later Hillcrest if you consolidate them into Blairmore?

Sell the shop in Coleman, how much do you think we would get for those shops? Imagine the stampede of buyers to pick up a commercial building in down town Coleman. Think we would get a decent return for the taxpayers asset? Where would we park the equipment? I suspect one of those metal clad building in Blairmore with power and heat would probably cost us in the range of $3-400,000.

When I requested the justification for the consolidation I assumed that it would have been has simple as pulling a spread sheet with a bunch of numbers on it, out of a file somewhere and saying here is what we gained.

The only financial consideration in that report is if we sell a shop down the road.

Anonymous said...

Your 10:46 comment seems spot on to me. That's a good one, thanks Dean.

Anonymous said...

The consolidation of the Blairmore and Colman shops was just a bureaucratic sugar candy to show they were doing something. It provided no savings, in fact, made everything less efficient with operators going to Blairmore at the start of their shift, then driving to Coleman to start their equipment. Only a career bureaucrat would find an efficiency there. What kind of a no-brainer was that?