TORONTO, ON, April 24, 2014: The Ontario Government must partner with the private sector in order to preserve public services in the province, according to a report released today by the Ontario Chamber of Commerce, MAXIMUS Canada, and KPMG.
The report, Unlocking the Public Service Economy in Ontario, makes the case for a larger role for the private and not-for-profit sectors in the delivery of Ontario’s public services.
“Ontario’s debt is now approaching $300 billion. Our infrastructure is insufficient, gridlock is gripping our most populous region, and our aging population is about to drive up health care costs exponentially,” says Dwight Duncan, former Ontario Finance Minister and Co-Chair of the report advisory panel. “We believe there’s room for productivity improvements within government that can be gained through alternative service delivery.”
Alternative service delivery refers to the process of public sector restructuring whereby governments partner with the private or not-for-profit sectors to deliver public services.
The report points to international examples as proof that alternative service delivery is cost-effective. Many countries have saved over 20 percent in service delivery costs by employing alternate service delivery models in areas such as prison management, health services, and administrative services.
Importantly, say the authors, governments are increasingly looking to innovative service delivery models to improve service quality. This is particularly true in ‘complex’ service areas, where service quality improves as a result of an injection of private sector capital and expertise.
The report notes that those areas most suitable for service transformation in Ontario are those ‘complex’ areas of service delivery, including health care billing, issuing drivers’ licenses, and outpatient medical procedures.
“Despite international successes, Ontario lags behind many other countries when it comes to adopting innovative alternative service delivery models,” says Allan O’Dette, President and CEO of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. “If we’re going to overcome our challenges, including our growing debt, we need to find ways to be more efficient and quite simply, to do more with less.”
As a first step, the Chamber is calling on the Ontario Government to conduct a government wide services-audit to identify and evaluate suitable opportunities for the application of alternative service delivery models.
To read all of the recommendations, download the report.
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“Embracing alternative service delivery as a means to transform public service delivery has been extremely successful for jurisdictions across the globe. Here in Canada, MAXIMUS is proud of the transformational change that we have enabled in B.C. through the Health Insurance B.C. program.”
- Duff Lang, President of MAXIMUS Canada, Supporters of Unlocking the Public Service Economy in Ontario
For more information contact:
Manager of Communications
Ontario Chamber of Commerce
T: 416.482.5222 ext. 2410