Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Consultation Over Proposal to Outsource Network Maintenance

Consultation Underway Over Proposal to Outsource Network Maintenance

Dunedin (Monday, 6 May 2013) – The Dunedin City Council is consulting with staff over a proposal to outsource its water and wastewater network maintenance.

A review of the Water and Waste Services business unit (WWS) has been carried out to look at ways to reduce costs to ratepayers while maintaining or improving service levels.

Key points of the proposal are:

• The DCC retains full ownership and control over the water and waste services network. The proposal would not affect service delivery or public accountability.

• The proposal to contract out network maintenance is in line with most other councils. About 75% of New Zealand’s water maintenance work is either contracted out or carried out by a Council Controlled Organisation (CCO).

• Annual savings of $300,000 to $550,000 are expected if all of the water and wastewater network maintenance is contracted out.

The outsourcing proposal was presented to affected staff last week. A consultation period with staff and unions is underway, closing on 4 June.

DCC Water and Waste Services Manager Dr Laura McElhone says, “I am aware this is a difficult time for staff, but the DCC has to consider whether there are better ways to deliver the services.”

Under the proposal, 30 staff would be transferred to the contractor on their existing terms and conditions of employment. The roles of two other staff would change, with redeployment options to be discussed. No redundancies are anticipated as a result of the proposed outsourcing.

In proposing an outsourcing model, the DCC is confident there will be interested contractors who can deliver the same or better service at lower costs, for reasons such as economies of scale. To ensure there would be sufficient interest from suitably experienced contractors, expressions of interest will be sought at the same time as staff are being consulted.

Dr McElhone says seeking expressions of interest at the same time does not mean a decision has already been made on the proposal. Rather it means the DCC Executive Management Team will have all the necessary information before making a final decision in June.

In September last year, the Council decided not to create a CCO for water, wastewater and stormwater. Following that decision, all elements of water and wastewater services were reviewed to identify opportunities for improvement. The review was carried out by the WWS management team, with support from an external industry expert.

Key findings included that the DCC was delivering required levels of service, but that costs were high compared to other New Zealand cities. Following on from the review, an overall process for change has been put forward. The proposal to contract out network maintenance is the first stage and a decision will be made in late June.

Water and wastewater services receive $44 million of rates funding annually and employ 98.2 FTEs.

What would remain in-house are all aspects of the network that ensure residents receive good quality drinking water. This includes operation and maintenance of the treatment plants and pumping stations, and all asset planning and investment decisions.

The only work to be outsourced would be maintenance relating to the water and wastewater pipes.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Patience: Drive Safe

Be patient before passing is the AA's message for drivers this Labour weekend.

"People taking crazy risks to get past other vehicles is one of the most dangerous things on the road,” says AA spokesperson Dylan Thomsen.

“The weather is looking good for the long weekend so the roads will be busy. Unfortunately, that also increases the chances of people getting frustrated and trying a risky passing manoeuvre. When they get past, there will probably be more traffic up ahead anyway so it won’t get people there faster.” More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Employment Relations Bill: Govt Strains To Get Tea Break Law Through

The Government has been left with egg on its face - failing to get its much-vaunted, but hugely unpopular, meal break law passed in the first week of its new term, Labour spokesperson on Labour Issues Andrew Little says. More>>

ALSO:

Guns: Police Association Call To Arm Police Full Time

"The new minister gave his view, that Police do not need to be armed, while standing on the forecourt of parliament. The dark irony was that the interview followed immediately after breaking news of a gunman running amok in the Canadian parliament in Ottawa..." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Tokenism Of New Zealand's Role Against Islamic State

Our contribution against IS will be to send SAS forces to train the Iraqis? That’s like offering trainers to General Custer just as the 7th cavalry reached the Little Big Horn. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Shell And Todd Caught Drilling Without Approval

Multi-national oil company Shell’s New Zealand arm and local energy giant Todd Energy have breached the new law governing New Zealand’s Exclusive Economic Zone, the Environmental Protection Authority says in an Oct. 10 document released by the Green Party. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Pharmac, Gough Whitlam And Sleater-Kinney

We’re not at the outset of these negotiations. The outset was six years ago, and negotiators were hoping to have some sort of ‘framework’ deal finished in time for the APEC meeting in a few weeks’ time. These ‘extreme’ positions are what we’ve reached near the intended end of the negotiations… More>>

ALSO:

PM Of Many Hats: Questions, No Answers On Whale Oil

Dr RUSSEL NORMAN (Co-Leader – Green) to the Prime Minister: How many times since November 2008 has he spoken with blogger Cameron Slater on the phone and how many times, if any, has he texted him?
Rt Hon JOHN KEY (Prime Minister): None in my capacity as Prime Minister. More>>

ALSO:

Aussie Investigation Dropped: Call On Minister McCully To Pursue The Case Of Balibo Five

West Papua Action is deeply concerned at the lack of any clear outcome from the Australian Federal Police inquiry into the 1975 deaths of the ‘Balibo Five’ including NZ journalist Gary Cunningham. More>>

ALSO:

'Feed The Kids' Bill: Metiria Turei To Lead Fight On Feeding Hungry Children

Green Party Co-leader Metiria Turei is urging all political parties to support the Feed the Kids Bill which she inherited today from Mana leader Hone Harawira. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: State Opening Of Parliament

The House sat at 10.30am on Tuesday before MPs were summoned to hear the Speech from the Throne in the Legislative Council Chamber. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news