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General Issues Committee reviews City Manager’s preliminary 2021 operating budget

HAMILTON, ON - Advancing equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) initiatives, supporting a culture of innovation and an increased collection and use of data and analytics rank high on the list of City Manager’s 2021 priorities, the General Issues Committee heard today.

As part of her 2021 budget presentation, City Manager Janette Smith identified key priorities her office will be working on in the coming year, which also include:

  • Finalizing an organizational EDI framework
  • Operationalizing the new Hamilton Anti-Racism Resource Centre
  • The completion of a new City website
  • Identifying new opportunities for online services
  • Continued advocacy for improved broadband in Hamilton
  • The development and Council approval of a new public engagement policy

The City Manager’s budget outlines an increase of approximately $490,000 from the $12.37 million 2020 budget. The City Manager’s Office includes Corporate Communications, Intergovernmental Relations, the office of the Chief Digital Officer, Human Resources and the Office of the City Auditor.

During her presentation, Smith also highlighted a number of accomplishments from 2020, including:

  • Significant support for the pandemic response, including overseeing the redeployment of City staff to aid in the response, logistics, and an unprecedented level of public communications
  • The launch of an online civic engagement platform, Engage Hamilton
  • Increasing the City’s social media presence by 26 per cent or 31,000 residents
  • Increasing the total number of open datasets available to the public by 14 per cent or 236 sets
  • Launching 31 audit investigations

Council is expected to consider approval for the final operating budget in March.

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