Dallas reorganizing city staff

DALLAS -- The coming fiscal year will bring more changes besides a new budget for the city of Dallas.


Dallas Gov't

DALLAS -- The coming fiscal year will bring more changes besides a new budget for the city of Dallas.

City departments are in the midst of a reorganization in the hopes of streamlining communication between divisions and becoming more efficient.

Services to residents and customers should remain unchanged, but responsibilities at city hall will be shuffled between departments, some of which will operate under new names.

City Manager Jerry Wyatt said he began looking into a reorganization more than a year ago.

"It came out of looking at the budget, the reduction in revenue, and, on top of that, we have some retirements," Wyatt said.

With five employees retiring soon, Wyatt decided now would be the best time to begin a realignment of city services.

Wyatt said the city's assistant city manager, library supervisor, water treatment plant operator, a public works employee and a finance employee will be retiring.

Public Works Director Fred Braun will soon be the manager of the Engineering and Environmental Services Department, which will focus more on engineering, overseeing watershed and wetlands management, environmental permitting and operating contracts for service of the water distribution system and sewer treatment plant, public facility management plans, aquifer storage and recovery and Geographic Information Systems.

Already this fiscal year, the city opted to have a contractor take over water distribution operations, requiring a layoff of three city employees. Those workers were replaced with two from the city's contractor, CH2M HILL OMI, which already operated the city wastewater treatment plant.

Community Development Director Jason Locke will be the manager of Community Development/Public Works Operations, which will encompass planning, building, public works, economic development, building facilities, capital improvement projects, code enforcement, the Dallas Aquatic Center and urban renewal.

The assistant city manager position will shift to manager the Administrative Services Department, which will include human resources, communications, information technology, fleet management, municipal court, senior services, parks and recreation, the Dallas Public Library, and risk management.

Financial Services, Police and Fire departments will be unchanged.

Wyatt said the reorganization was part of $800,000 in cuts -- about 10 percent of the city's general fund -- in the 2011-12 budget.


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