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The City of Toronto Pays KPMG $350,000 to Do a Study on the Obvious

To the Klynveldians, it was a pretty decent pay day just to state the obvious: that the city of Toronto could save a few bucks (make that a few loonies) by not putting fluoride in its water supply and a few other cost-saving measures. We find KPMG’s tagline of “cutting through complexity” to be extra appropriately hilarious in this particular context and there is no mention in the report of potential cost savings that could be realized were Toronto never to pay for Big 4 consulting services ever again.

Krupo has the entire story over at A Counting School but here’s the short version for those of you with legitimate ADHD problems: eliminating or reducing some non-core services provided by the Public Works and Infrastructure department could save the city $10 – 15 million (CAD).

KPMG states that ending the forced medication of Toronto’s public water supply by cutting the fluoride could have detrimental effects on the dental well-being of Torontonians, though obviously they haven’t been reading up on their tin foil hat, anti-fluoride research, which clearly shows a higher incidence of tooth decay in areas which use the fertilizer-production byproduct (which is considered toxic waste as long as it isn’t dumped in the water supply). Cut it! (If you think I’m insane, check out this “chemical spill” that burned through the concrete in Illinois. Those guys in Hazmat suits? Cleaning up Hydrofluorosilicic acid, the toxic industry slurry that becomes fluoride)

Anyway, back to the subject at hand. KPMG also advises Toronto that holding itself to a lower level standard could help save some cash. “Over half of the services that report through the Public Works Committee are provided ‘at standard’, which is generally the level required by provincial legislation or the level generally provided by other municipalities,” says the report. “30% of services are provided at slightly above standard offering some opportunities for cost reduction by lowering the service level provided. 17% of services are delivered slightly below or below standard.”

One such “higher standard” service to which KPMG refers in this report is the Toxic Taxi (no, that’s not what you call a bar crawl through Denver with Caleb after yoga and two red bean burritos), a free service that picks up your hazardous household waste like expired medications and batteries if you cannot drop them off at an authorized location yourself. We wonder how much went in to make the high quality “advertisement” of bootleg Canadian Mexicans Chuck and Vince trying to get you to turn in your used paint and batteries.

As Torontoist so astutely pointed out, the report didn’t actually look at how the horribly mismanaged Toronto city government could run more efficiently but instead simply analyzed which services could be cut. “KPMG did not assess the effectiveness or efficiency of City services,” the report states. “Assessment of how services are delivered is envisioned to be conducted through separate efficiency reviews. KPMG did not conduct financial analyses of programs and services to identify potential savings.”

I guess efficiency suggestions are extra.