New collaborative team to work on Victoria’s strategic plan

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps plans to create a team with people from different city departments

A new team at the City of Victoria will bring together staff from different departments in an effort to complete projects outlined in council’s strategic plan.

The “interdisciplinary project team” will consist of three people, most likely from the engineering, parks and recreation and planning departments, with support from civic engagement, said Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps.

“They will be tasked with undertaking one of the actions that’s in the strategic plan and then they will be in charge of delivering that project to completion, then get that checked off and they’ll move onto another project,” said Helps. “The idea is that we’re all supposed to be focused together to serve the public.”

This new team will cost up to $300,000 a year, but Helps said this will not be an added cost because four managers have been let go that will not be replaced.

“If we redeploy our resources in an innovative way, we can actually save a lot of money.”

Helps said the team’s actions and outcomes will be measured at least annually to monitor its success.

“We expect that team to deliver results, not just do the same old thing.”

The idea for this team came from staff after council submitted the city’s draft strategic plan.

“It’s an ambitious plan, and [staff] recommended that in order to do this, [they] felt like we could best use resources if we had an interdepartmental team focused on delivering this objectives, rather than just having us working in silos.”

Public feedback on the budget and draft strategic plan will be accepted until March 29 via an online survey at victoria.ca. A town hall meeting will take place on March 23.

Helps said she expects the budget to be approved on April 9, and the interdisciplinary project team will be hired anytime after that.