Mayor Richard M. Daley today announced steps aimed at increasing City revenues and making government function more efficiently, including a pilot program to outsource some hiring, a plan to allow temporary sponsorship of Chicago River bridge houses and auctioning off 50 taxicab medallions.
“If Chicago is to be competitive in the future, city government must work better for people and provide the services that people need, but in an affordable way,” Daley said in a news conference that followed his meeting with a business advisory group held at Harris Bank, 115 S. LaSalle St.
“Toward that goal, over the last several years we have taken many steps to better manage government, cut and control spending, protect taxpayers and restructure our day to day operations. But, there is more we can and must do before I am satisfied that we've fully transformed government for the 21st century,” he said.
The Mayor announced that:
- The City will issue a Request for Proposal to outsource hiring for certain positions in city infrastructure departments, including the Departments of Streets and Sanitation, Transportation, Water Management, Aviation, and General Services.
The City will seek proposals from firms with recruitment and hiring expertise to hire for certain trades positions in these departments, including carpenters, electricians, laborers, and plumbers. The firm will be required to post jobs, recruit, and screen applicants, all in accordance with the City’s hiring plan, rules, and regulations.
If the RFP comes back with bids that are too high, the program would not go forward.
“I am determined that we get our hiring procedures right. The people of Chicago need to have confidence in our procedures and know that they have the same fair chance at getting a City job as everyone else,” he said.
DaIey made clear that this proposal is not related to the City’s recent transfer of hiring oversight functions to the Inspector General's Office, which will continue to perform that function.
- To increase revenue this year and into the future, the City will auction 50 more city taxicab medallions, which willgenerate several million dollars in new revenue and increase the fleet from the current 6,800.
- Next week, the City will introduce into the City Council a pilot proposal that will allow partnerships with the City to sponsor and celebrate the bridge houses on the Chicago River downtown.
The step could generate multiple millions of dollars per year and at the same time add color to the riverfront and celebrate Chicago’s famous moveable bridges.
“These temporary partnerships – which would coincide with holidays through the year – are not about permanently leasing the Riverwalk or selling naming rights to the bridge houses. This is simply about giving companies the opportunity to sponsor parts of the riverfront at various times of the year,” Daley said.
The money generated by this proposal will enable us to keep investing in Chicago's neighborhoods.
- The City has negotiated a new contract with Exelon to provide electricity to the city that will save $15 million across all funds in 2011 as compared to last year.
“Taken together, these steps build on other steps we've taken this year to improve the management of government. We will continue to act to improve government at all levels in the months ahead -- so that we're controlling its costs and transforming its structure so that we better serve the people of Chicago,” Daley said.
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