I am a concerned local business person. I know many other concerned local business people who back up my plea to the Mayor and City Council outlined below. I talk with and commiserate with citizen taxpayers of the City of Van Wert and they want government to be more efficient. All of us implore the Mayor, City Council, and City Auditor to take advantage of the “performance audits” program offered by Ohio’s Auditor of State Dave Yost.
This is not an accusation or indictment of mismanagement or misconduct of any kind by the City of Van Wert Mayor’s office, City Council, or any department within our local government. This is intended to persuade those in charge to embrace a tried and true self-improvement program for our local government.
In our own private businesses many of us have employed consultants at our own expense, joined performance improvement groups, and followed analyses that benchmark our operations against peer groups. As individuals we read books on household budgeting, view TV shows that tell us how to spend our money wisely, and ask advice from smarter money managers than ourselves, be they professionals, friends, or relatives. We watch our pennies, bundle our phone & cable TV, drive fuel efficient cars, and turn off the lights when we leave a room. These practices are done to improve our performance and achieve our objectives, not because we like audits or want to be known as cheap or tight with a buck. We intend to hold our local government to the same standard.
Often politicians campaign saying they will run their departments based on sound business principles. Then, when in office the good intentions get lost. Mayor and City Council, here’s your chance to do as you’ve promised and as your constituents expect you to do.
The recommendations are not onerous nor designed to make life more difficult. They are specifically tailored to suit the unique circumstances of each audit client so that the functions and activities of governments are done in the best way and that maximum value is achieved for each dollar spent, ensuring government makes the best use of the scarce resources available.
This is offered as a way to make Van Wert government better. No one’s political power will be diminished. On the contrary, if a politician promotes and implements this program and the city’s efficiencies improves, it would improve his or her standing as forward thinking and protector of the public’s assets.
So, Mayor and City Council ask these questions:
1. Is there currently an objective performance measuring program in place with recommendations for improvements?
2. If not, when was the last time such a process took place?
3. If not, will you commit to this Performance Audit by the Ohio Auditor of State and implement its recommendations?
4. The process takes 4-6 months. Will you commit to starting as soon as possible?
All we have to lose are possible outdated practices and processes that are almost for certain not the accepted “best practices” for this year, decade, or century. The City of Van Wert may be the best run government in the State of Ohio, it may be average, or it may be in great need of fixing. Without an outside administered analysis and a subsequent plan to improve, how will we ever know?
We implore you to do the right thing and sign up for the “performance audits” immediately. As elected public servants your responsibilities include spending our tax dollars wisely. There is no doubt this program will give you new ideas and methods to accomplish these responsibilities. The use of this proven program will cement your reputations as visionary community leaders. Let’s not wait any longer to implement this innovative way to save money and increase efficiencies right here in Van Wert.
For further information contact me personally or look at this link online http://www.auditor.state.oh.us/services/performance Now, Mayor and City Council members “do the right thing.”