Moore outlines plan for city services in Quincy

Posted: Jan. 16, 2013 10:08 am Updated: Jan. 30, 2013 1:15 pm

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

Alderman Kyle Moore envisions a city government where each department is evaluated annually on how well it serves residents.

The Republican candidate for mayor of Quincy said Wednesday he wants to create a communitywide measurement tool called "The Quincy Scorecard" to compare operations to try to improve services. Moore is trying to unseat two-term Mayor John Spring, a Democrat, in the April 9 election.

"Every year, in every department, we will answer the fundamental question, ‘Are we doing a better job for Quincy this year than we did last year?' " Moore said during a press conference at his campaign headquarters in downtown Quincy.

Moore said similar programs are being used in large city's such as Boston and St. Petersburg, Fla., and more than a dozen Illinois communities also follow a similar approach.

Moore proposes providing information on how long it takes city crews to respond to complaints about potholes, damaged sidewalks or water line breaks. For departments that don't have as much interaction with the public, such as Information Technologies, there also are areas that could be measured, Moore said.

"You could track how many work stations they worked at during a given year," he said, adding that the annual reports would include areas where improvements could be made.

Moore also said he would initiate a tracking system to see how long it takes to complete city services and create a list to let residents know when they should expect a work order to be completed.

"Currently, we do not track how long it takes us to do basic tasks, such as cutting trees, fixing a pothole or having a sidewalk repaired," he said. "We will work with our IT Department and department heads to develop a tracking system for work orders and indicators that will help us improve our performance."

Moore said he knows many potholes are filled within a day of being reported, so he doesn't consider that a problem.

"Our crews are really good, but there are some things, like cutting down a tree, where I really don't know a reasonable amount of time it would take," Moore said. "So now we will be able to tell them you can go on our city website and know your work order and how long it should take and know that it has been turned into the system."

Moore also proposed holding two town halls annually, something that he does now with his constituents in the 3rd Ward.

"I don't know how I would have been able to do my job as effectively as I have been able to had it not been for the town halls," he said.

Moore also suggested that a "contractor's hour" be established between developers and the city's Planning and Development Department and the Engineering Department.

As vice president of Moore's Floors, he said he hears many compliments from contractors on how easy it is to obtain a permit in the city compared with other communities, and he believes this is another way to attract more businesses to Quincy.

"I also know that we have to be responsive to our customers' needs," Moore said. "I have to go to my job every morning at 7:30 a.m. to get crews out, and I know it would be beneficial to me if I had to deal with a government body if I could go in once a quarter at a time that was convenient -- say 6:30 in the morning -- and talk to them about some of their needs. That way I can go to my job site on time."