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City manager contacted MTAS about Comprehensive Management Review

By Bill ShortFlag City Logo

Millington City Manager Thomas F. Christie has contacted The University of Tennessee’s Municipal Technical Advisory Services about conducting a comprehensive evaluation of city organization, staffing and procedures.

Noting that the Board of Mayor and Aldermen “encouraged” him to explore that possibility, Christie said MTAS does offer that service, which it calls a Comprehensive Management Review.

“The study itself will require about 90 days,” he said, “and it could involve as many as eight different consultants in eight different specialties.”

Christie made the comments on Feb. 4 during his first monthly report to the board at a regular meeting. Noting that MTAS is in the process of developing “time lines and costs,” he said he will give the board “more definite” information when it becomes available.

In response to a question by Alderman Hank Hawkins, Christie said he will also be conducting his own review. Expressing a desire not to spend a lot of money on an “outside” entity for the review, Hawkins encouraged Christie to “expedite” his own.

Christie said there was a time when MTAS provided this service at no cost. But it has discovered that, after it began charging for it, the number of reviews has “significantly” decreased.

“So, I’m hopeful that the cost will be reasonable,” he said. “But I will be concurrently reviewing as well.”

When Alderman Mike Caruthers expressed the hope that Christie has “already started,” the city manager said he has.

Asked whether he thinks he can complete his review in less than six months, Christie said it will depend on the circumstances.

“Evaluation of staff is an ongoing process,” he noted. “ It can change as often as daily.”

Christie said he has already begun assigning “specific duties” and asking the directors of city departments to follow up on some suggestions. He noted that how they follow through on that will give him a “much better feeling,” not only of their capability, but also their willingness to assume that direction and to follow that lead.

While acknowledging that his review could take less than six months, Christie said he would not want to be held to a specific number of days.

“It wouldn’t be fair,” he noted, “because we’re dealing with human beings, all of whom have different qualities, different strengths and, certainly, different weaknesses. How those manifest, and if they will manifest, is hard to predict.”

In response to a question by Mayor Terry Jones, Christie said he did not discuss the possibility of MTAS conducting a comprehensive financial audit, because that suggestion was not made at the board’s recent work session.

But he recalled that, two days after he arrived in Millington, City Finance Director John Trusty gave him a copy of the most recent audit, and he did not see “any areas” to be concerned about.



  • George88

    I would encourage Manager Christie to begin his evaluation of city department directors with imput from the citizens that receive the services.When people are happy with services they normally will not comment. When people are unhappy they tend to complain. Are we happy with fire and police protection? Are we happy with sanitation services? Are the sidewalks walkable? Are vacant lots clean? Are the roads paved and pot holes filled? Is our city court system working properly? Can the City of Millington afford to operate an current property tax revenue, or do we need an increase in property tax rates? On that issue we are at the mercy of Cheyenne Gibson, as far as appraisals go. Is crime out of control? Is the Chief of police doing their job? Are city fines being collected timely? Are all checks and balances in place that protect our city?

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February 2013
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