Not sure what the impact will be on local organizations like ours, but greater efficiency is a great thing!
Pierce County will consolidate its community services and human services departments as it tries to save money and streamline services.
County Executive Pat McCarthy announced the consolidation this morning.
“We can set up a system that delivers better outcomes, helping more citizens who need our assistance,” McCarthy said in a statement announcing the move. She notified employees in both departments late last week.
The county’s human services department includes services like chemical dependency, mental health and long-term care. Community services covers everything from arts and tourism to homeless assistance and low-income housing.
For several months Deputy Executive Kevin Phelps has led a group studying a possible consolidation of the departments. The group concluded that combining the departments will result in a more effective delivery of services.
Many questions remain to be answered. Among them: how much money, if any, will be saved. The team will spend the next few months creating a detailed implementation plan.
You can view its recommendations to the executive here.
The consolidation of human and community services might be the first phase of a major consolidation of county government. McCarthy ran for executive two years ago on a pledge to improve customer service and find efficiencies in county government.
In addition, the County Council has asked McCarthy to study combining the planning and public works departments. It also has asked the executive to study combining human resources, budget and finance, facilities, risk management and information technology into a new “general services division.”
Reports on those possible consolidations are expected this fall.