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[00:00:03]

GOOD MORNING EVERYBODY.

I AM.

I SEE OUR, UH, TVS ON.

OKAY, GREAT.

GOOD

[CALL TO ORDER]

MORNING EVERYBODY.

I AM LESLIE POOLE.

I'M THE VICE CHAIR OF THE AUDIT AND FINANCE COMMITTEE.

AND THIS MORNING BECAUSE MAYOR PRO TE ALTER, WHO IS THE CHAIR OF AUDIT AND FINANCE IS HA UH, IN TRAVEL STATUS AND ENJOINING US REMOTELY.

AT THE BEGINNING OF THE MEETING, I'LL BE CONDUCTING OUR MEETING.

SO WELCOME EVERYBODY HERE.

UH, THIS IS THE AUDIT AND FINANCE COMMITTEE, WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21ST, 2022.

AND IT IS 9:33 AM.

WE ARE AT AUSTIN CITY HALL AND PRESENT OUR MAYOR PROTEM ALTAR COUNCIL MEMBER FUENTES AND ME COUNCIL MEMBER POOL, AND, UH, COUNCIL MEMBER TOVA WILL BE JOINING US, UH, SHORTLY.

DO WE HAVE ANY

[Public Communication: General]

PEOPLE HERE TO SPEAK ON PUBLIC COMMENT? UM, WE HAVE THREE VIRTUAL SPEAKERS.

OKAY, GREAT.

THREE VIRTUAL SPEAKERS.

I DO NOT HAVE A LIST OF NAMES.

IS SOMEBODY GOING TO CALL THEIR NAMES? YES.

AGAIN, THAT'S THEIR NAMES LIKE A NAMES I WOULD, YES.

IF YOU COULD BRING THAT TO ME AND GO AHEAD AND PROCEED WITH PUBLIC COMMENT, PLEASE.

THANK YOU.

YOU KNOW WHAT? I'M GOING TO GO AHEAD AND, AND NAME THE PEOPLE WHO ARE CALLING IN, AND THEN YOU CAN TAKE THEM IN THE ORDER.

SO ON THE LIST WE HAVE SANDRA MUELLER, WENDY MURPHY, AND PAT VOS TRAYS.

AND SO WE WILL PROCEED WITH THREE MINUTES FOR EACH SPEAKER, STARTING WITH SANDRA MUELLER.

MS. MUELLER.

WELCOME.

HI, GOOD MORNING.

UH, GOOD MORNING COUNCIL MEMBERS.

THIS IS SANDRA BALLER.

I'M IN D ONE.

I'M CALLING ON ITEM FIVE IS NEUTRAL.

AND THANKS FOR YOUR TIME FOR THREE MINUTES.

UM, SO THIS WILL AT THE AUGUST 24TH MEETING, YOU CLAIM THAT DOGS AND CRATES IN THE NATIONWIDE MEDIUM TO LARGE DOG SPACE CRISIS WAS DUE TO LACK OF VOLUNTEERS, BUT KNOWING THE PRIORITY OF A GOVERNMENT IS SAFETY.

WHAT OTHER CITY SERVICE RELIES ON VOLUNTEERS FOR THE STRUCTURE OF THEIR WORK? SO POLICE, FIRE AVIATION, I DON'T KNOW.

I'D LIKE TO GIVE YOU A LITTLE INSIGHT INTO VOLUNTEERING AT ANIMAL SERVICES BECAUSE IT'S NOT ALL PUPPIES AND KITTENS.

THESE ANIMALS COME INJURED, SCARED, CONFUSED, AND SOMETIMES DEFENSIVE.

SO I HAVE EMAILED EACH OF YOU AS SAMPLE OF THE WHITEBOARDS FROM THE AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER AND APA COULD ANY OF YOU HANDLE A 60 POUND DOG WHOSE NOTES INCLUDE ONE OR ANY COMBINATION OF THE FOLLOWING DOOR DAUGHTER GO SLOW, DOG, REACTIVE JUMPY, MOUTHY PUMPY STRONG PULL CLOTHES AND NEIGHBORS, HARD MOUTH REDIRECTION, RISK LEASH, BITE LEASH, CLIMBER RESISTANT TO REC KENNELING BARRIER, REACTIVE RESOURCE GUARDER REVERSE KENNEL, ROUTINE PROOF HANDLERS, ONLY BEHAVIOR TEAM ONLY.

ALSO BX USED TO BE ON THE BOARDS AND IT MEANS BITE HISTORY, BUT IT'S NO LONGER USED.

BUT I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT THAT STAFF AND VOLUNTEERS HAVE THAT INFORMATION.

AND THEN AS A THURSDAY, THIS ALSO TAKES MORE STAFF TIME AND EFFORT THAN Y'ALL THINK IT'S A LONG WALK TO THE TRUCK PORT FOR MOST KENNELS AND YOU NEED ACCESS CARDS, OR SOMEONE WILL LET YOU IN THE DOG MUST URINATE AND DEFECATE HOPEFULLY BEFORE PUTTING IT ON THE TRUCK.

THIS COULD TAKE UP TO 15 MINUTES PER DOG.

HOPEFULLY THE DOG GOES UP THIS STAIRS AND INTO THE TRUCK WILLINGLY AND DOES NEED EXTRA TIME TO COMFORT IT AND COOKS IT INTO THE TRUCK AND THE KENNEL.

THE TRUCK NEEDS TO BE STOCKED, BUT BLANKETS, LEASHES, WATER TOYS, AND TREATS YOU'LL NEED A DRIVER AND THEN STAFFING AT THE DESTINATION UPON RETURN TO THE SHELTER.

ALL THE ANIMALS NEED TO BE WALKED BACK TO THEIR KENNELS AND THE ENTIRE VEHICLE NEEDS TO BE SANITIZED, NOT CLEAN SANITIZED.

IT MEANS THE DOOR IS THE TOP, THE BOTTOM, THE SIZE OF EACH KENNEL, THE FLOORS OF THE TRUCK.

THIS IS A GET ON YOUR HANDS AND KNEES KIND OF JOB.

IT TAKES TIME.

I ASK THAT YOU STOP EXPECTING THE COMMUNITY TO DO THE CITY'S JOB.

I HOPE THIS AUDIT DETERMINES AAC IS AND HAS BEEN WOEFULLY UNDERFUNDED IN STAFFING AND STAYING NEUTER SERVICES.

THE HONOR SHOULD ALSO FIND THAT CITY COUNCIL'S ALLOWANCE OF APA TO BRING IN THOUSANDS OF ANIMALS FROM ACROSS THE STATE IS HINDERING THE ADOPTION OF AUSTIN'S OWN ANIMALS.

THREE TO THIS SPACE CRISIS IS NATIONWIDE IS NOT DUE TO A LACK OF VOLUNTEERS.

SO THANK YOU FOR LISTENING AND THIS SCHOOL.

THANKS FOR PUTTING AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER IN YOUR NEWSLETTER.

I DO READ THOSE AND I HELP ALL OF YOU WILL VOLUNTEERED ANIMAL SERVICES ON A REGULAR BASIS.

AND ADDITIONALLY, IF THE AUDITORS ARE THERE, PLEASE CONSIDER AUDITING ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSION AGAIN, THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR TIME.

THANKS MISS MUL.

I'LL ALSO NOTE THAT COUNCIL MEMBER HARBOR MADISON APPEARS TO BE ALSO, UM, LISTENING IN THIS MORNING AND, UM, I SEE HER NAME ON THE BOARD THERE NEXT SPEAKER FOR THREE MINUTES.

WENDY MURPHY.

WELCOME MS. MURPHY MORNING COUNCIL.

UH, MY NAME

[00:05:01]

IS WENDY MURPHY.

I'M A 30 YEAR RESIDENT OF AUSTIN IN DISTRICT FOR, UM, WE HAVE A BIG PROBLEM AND THAT PROBLEM IS TOO MANY DOGS AND CATS.

THE VIABLE HUMANE SOLUTION TO THIS WOULD BE SPAY NEUTER AVAILABLE AND AFFORDABLE FOR EVERYONE, INCLUDING, AND ESPECIALLY IN THE UNDERSERVED AREAS OF, AND TO PROVIDE WIDESPREAD EDUCATION AS TO THE IMPORTANCE AND BENEFITS OF SPAY NEUTER.

I'M REQUESTING THAT THE CITY AUDITOR REVIEW, WHETHER THE SPAY NEUTER PROGRAMS CURRENTLY PROVIDED IN HOUSE OR PERFORMING THE NUMBER OF SURGERIES NEEDED.

AND IF NOT, WHAT CAN WE DO ABOUT IT ON AUGUST 27TH, THIS YEAR, AUSTIN ANIMAL CENTER AND AUSTIN PETS ALIVE PARTICIPATED IN A BIG CLEAR THE SHELTER DAY.

THIS BASICALLY MEANS HANDING OUT DOGS AND CATS FOR FREE.

THIS METHOD OF DEALING WITH OVERCROWDING IS SO, SO INEFFECTIVE THAT JUST WEEKS LATER, THE CITY SHELTER IS AGAIN SO OVERCROWDED THAT THEY HAD TO PUT NEARLY 70 DOGS IN POPUP CRATES AND PUT THEM IN THE CONFERENCE ROOM.

ALL OF THIS WAS WELL COVERED IN THE LOCAL NEWS LAST WEEK.

SO I AM HOPING THAT ALL LOCAL POLICY MAKERS AND OFFICIALS PAID ATTENTION AND WILL REALIZE THE SERIOUSNESS OF THIS PROBLEM.

SO ONCE AGAIN, THE SHELTER IS RESTRICTING INTAKE TO EMERGENCY ONLY.

THIS IS HARMFUL TO ANIMALS AND TO PEOPLE, VERY FRUSTRATING TO PEOPLE.

AND ONCE AGAIN, THE SHELTER HAD ANOTHER BIG FREE GIVEAWAY, UH, BEGGING OX AUSTINITES TO COME AND GET A FREE DOG.

IN ORDER TO CLEAR THOSE POPUP CRATES I'VE BEEN WORKING IN ANIMAL RESCUE MYSELF FOR OVER 30 YEARS, THERE ARE HANDFUL OF COMMONLY FOLLOWED PROCEDURES TO HELP ENSURE SAFETY AND WELLBEING OF THE ANIMALS THAT WE'RE HOMING.

AND REHOMING THE FIRST AND FOREMOST OF THESE IS ALWAYS CHARGE.

AT LEAST A NOMINAL FEE.

THIS HELPS TO WEED OUT THE PEOPLE WHO INTEND TO USE THE ANIMALS AS BAIT AND DOG FIGHTING RINGS OR SELL THE ANIMALS OR DUMP THEM ON THE STREET.

AS SOON AS THEY REALIZE IT'S NOT FUN ANYMORE, OR IT'S A LOT OF TROUBLE AND MONEY TO TAKE CARE OF AN ANIMAL, OH, WELL IT WAS FREE.

SO NOTHING LOST.

SO THEY JUST DUMPED THE ANIMAL.

SO IT IS TRULY ASTONISHING THAT THESE GIVEAWAYS HAVE BECOME SO ROUTINE THAT IT'S NOT EVEN QUESTIONED ANYMORE.

IT'S ADVERTISED.

LIKE IT'S A BIG CAUSE FOR CELEBRATION, WHICH ENCOURAGES IMPULSE ADOPTIONS BY PEOPLE WHO REALLY SHOULDN'T BE ADOPTING.

THEY'RE NOT IN A GOOD POSITION TO ADOPT.

IT'S NOT A PARTY.

IT'S A SHAMEFUL RESULT OF FAILED POLICY AND THE STUBBORN REFUSAL BY MANY IN THIS CITY TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE SOURCE OF THE PROBLEM, WHICH IS OVER POPULATION OF DOGS AND CATS, THE LONG TERM VIABLE WAY TO END THE SHELTER CAPACITY CRISIS IS TO ADEQUATELY FUND AND ESTABLISH BAYAR PROGRAMS. THANK YOU.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

AND OUR LAST SPEAKER IS PAT BALLS, TRAYS, MS. BALLS TRADES, UM, VICE CHECK PAUL MAYOR PROGRAM ALTER AND COUNCIL MEMBERS.

UH, THANK YOU FOR THE OPPORTUNITY TO SPEAK.

I CURRENTLY LIVE IN DISTRICT NINE, BUT IN A FEW WEEKS I WILL BE VOTING IN DISTRICT THREE.

I WAS PLEASED TO SEE THAT THE 25 20 15 CITY AUDIT LOOKED AT NATIONAL STANDARDS FOR ANIMAL CARE WORKERS.

AS YOU KNOW, WE WERE NOT MEETING THOSE STANDARDS BACK THEN, AND WE'RE STILL NOT MEETING THEM.

NOW, I AM PLEASED TO SEE THAT THERE IS GOING TO BE A CITY AUDIT SO THAT YOU CAN AGAIN LOOK AT AT THE SHELTER SERVICE STANDARDS, BUT ALSO THIS TIME I'M ASKING YOU THAT YOU LOOK FOR AND, AND, AND, AND LOOK AT THE NUMBER OF ANIMAL PROTECTION OFFICERS PER 100,000 AUSTIN RESIDENTS.

AND ALSO LOOK AT THE NUMBER OF LOW COST BEU SURGERIES PER RESIDENT, AND WHETHER THOSE ARE ADEQUATE TO QU TO MEET AND, AND SUCCESSFULLY HAVE A QUALITY PROGRAM.

I HOPE THE AUDIT WILL QUANTIFY WHAT MANY OF US, EXCEPT JUST MAYBE A HANDFUL OF ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSION MEMBERS KNOW THAT ANIMAL SERVICES IS NOT ADEQUATELY FUNDED TO ACHIEVE THE 95% LIVE OUTCOME MANDATE BY CITY COUNCIL.

I APPRECIATE THE MANDATE, BUT THE NEED TO ADEQUATELY FUND IT.

PLEASE LOOK AT THIS AUDIT AS AN OPPORTUNITY TO INFORM YOU ON HOW THAT SHOULD BE HAPPENING.

I ALSO THINK THAT THE AUDIT NEEDS TO LOOK AT THE SPAN ORDER PROGRAM AND THE ANIMAL PROTECTION PROGRAM, AS CO-EQUAL WITH SHELTER SERVICES.

I WOULD ALSO LIKE TO SEE THE AUDIT LOOK AT WILDLIFE SERVICES AND WHETHER THERE SHOULD BE A MEMBER ON THE ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSION THAT IS A WILDLIFE EXPERT.

I RECENTLY WENT UP TO MAYOR PROTE DISTRICT PENN TO TAKE CARE OF A, A FRIEND'S DOG.

AND WHILE I WAS THERE, I SAW MANY, MANY DEER ALL OVER THE NEIGHBORHOOD, WHICH HE HAS BEEN TELLING ME ABOUT.

[00:10:01]

I THINK THERE SHOULD BE SOMEONE ON THE ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSIONS THAT BRINGS WILDLIFE ISSUES SUCH AS THE DEER ISSUE, SUCH AS THE COYOTE ISSUE AND, AND OTHER ISSUES CONSISTENTLY TO THE ATTENTION OF THE OTHER MEMBERS OF THE ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSION AND MAKES THOSE KNOWN TO CITY COUNCIL AND HOW WE SHOULD BE ALSO ADEQUATELY FUNDING A WILDLIFE PROGRAM.

UH, I KNOW WE ARE FUNDING A WILDLIFE EXPERT AT, AND I APPRECIATE THE COUNCIL MADE THOSE DECISIONS BACK IN 2015, BUT WE NEED TO HAVE SOMEONE ON THE ANIMAL ADVISORY COMMISSION CONSTANTLY ASKING ABOUT THOSE NUMBERS AND BRINGING THEM TO LIGHT.

SO I WOULD APPRECIATE, UM, IF THE AUDIT WOULD LOOK AT BAYER WILDLIFE SERVICES AND ANIMAL PROTECTION OFFICERS, IN ADDITION TO THE EXCELLENT WORK THAT WAS DONE IN THE 2015 AUDIT ABOUT BY LOOKING AT ANIMAL CARE WORKERS.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR YOUR COMMENT.

APPRECIATE IT.

NEXT ITEM

[1. Approve the minutes of the Audit and Finance Committee meeting of August 24, 2022.]

APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES.

UH, DO WE HAVE ANY ADJUSTMENTS OR AMENDMENTS TO THE MINUTES? MAY I HAVE A MOTION COUNCIL MEMBER FUENTEZ MOVES AND THE MAYOR PROTE SECONDS ALL IN FAVOR OF APPROVING THE MINUTES FOR THE AUDIT AND, UH, FINANCE COMMITTEE MEETING OF AUGUST 24TH, 2022, THAT IS UNANIMOUS ON THE DIAS WITH COUNCIL MEMBER.

TOVO ALSO JOINING US.

GOOD TO SEE YOU.

THANK YOU.

WE ARE GOING TO

[3. Briefing from Emergency Medical Sendees on Fiscal Year 2022 budget rider and billing]

MOVE NOW TO THE BRIEFING FOR EMS SERVICES ON FISCAL YEAR 2022 BUDGET RIDER AND BILLING.

AND AGAIN, THIS WAS, THIS ITEM HAS MOVED UP AT THE REQUEST OF, UH, CHAIR ALTAR, UM, BECAUSE SHE WILL HAVE TO LEAVE AFTER THIS BRIEFING.

SO I SEE CHIEF LERITZ IS HERE.

THANK YOU.

GOOD MORNING.

IS THIS YOUR FIRST TIME IN FRONT OF AUDIT IN FINANCE? THIS IS MY SECOND TIME APRIL RIGHT AFTER I STARTED, SO, OKAY.

THANK YOU, MAYOR.

PROTIME.

THANK YOU, COUNCIL MEMBERS FOR HAVING ME JUST WAIT FOR THE PRESENTATION TO BE LOADED.

GOOD TO SEE YOU THIS MORNING.

THANK YOU.

WE'RE LOOKING FOR THE EMS BRIEFING PLEASE.

AND THAT LOOKS LIKE YOU ARE GOOD TO GO.

ALL RIGHT.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

UH, AGAIN, THANK YOU, MAYOR.

PRETEND THANK YOU, COUNCIL MEMBERS FOR HAVING US, UH, EXCITED TO BE HERE, TO SHARE WITH YOU SOME OF THE SUCCESSES AND SOME OF THE WORK THAT WE'VE BEEN DOING ON IMPROVING THE OVERALL REVENUE CYCLE IN THE EMS DEPARTMENT.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

AS I GO THROUGH THIS, I'M BRIEFLY GONNA SHARE WITH YOU, UH, SOME OF THE PROGRESS WE'VE MADE THUS FAR TO DATE, UM, AS WELL AS WALK YOU THROUGH SOME OF THE HIGH LEVEL RECOMMENDATIONS THAT WE RECEIVED AND SEVERAL CONSULTANTS THAT HAVE COME IN TO REVIEW OUR REVENUE CYCLE.

AND THEN I WILL SHARE WITH YOU SOME SPECIFIC NEXT STEPS THAT WE, UH, PLAN TO TAKE IN THE DEPARTMENT THUS FAR.

UM, WE HAVE CONTINUED OUR WORK ON THE OVERALL, UH, REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT PROCESS.

UM, WE DID INITIALLY HAVE 21,000 CLAIMS. WE HAVE BEEN, UM, SLOWLY BUT STEADILY DECREASING THOSE CLAIMS, UH, FROM 21,000 TO NOW, LESS THAN, UH, 17,000.

I MENTIONED IN A PREVIOUS BRIEFING.

AND I, I REALIZED THAT, UH, MANY OF YOU ARE AWARE, WE WERE ANTICIPATING A HIGHER CHARITY CARE PAYMENT.

UH, THIS YEAR, LAST YEAR WE RECEIVED 1.2 MILLION.

WE HAVE NOT YET RECEIVED OUR, UM, PAYMENT FOR THIS, UH, THIS YEAR.

WE ANTICIPATED IT THIS WEEK OR LAST WEEK.

UM, ULTIMATELY WE DO EXPECT TO GET IT BY THE END OF OCTOBER, UH, WE'VE COMPLETED OUR CONSULTANT REPORTS AND WE'VE RECEIVED THOSE, THOSE FINAL REPORTS.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

WE BROUGHT TWO DIFFERENT CONSULTANTS INTO REVIEWER OPERATION.

ONE WAS FOCUSED ON DOCUMENTATION COMPLIANCE AS WELL AS, UH, REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT.

UH, THE FINAL REPORTS WERE RECEIVED JUST A FEW WEEKS AGO, SO WE ARE STILL IN THE PROCESS OF REVIEWING THOSE REPORTS.

UM, WHAT WE'VE DONE IS WE'VE PUT THOSE INTO A PROJECT MATRIX WE'RE BEGINNING TO REVIEW THOSE RECOMMENDATIONS, UM, AND CATEGORIZING IN THEM, PRIORITIZING THEM BASED ON FEASIBILITY AND PRIORITY.

SOME OF THE RECOMMENDATIONS WE HAD ALREADY PREVIOUSLY BEGIN IMPLEMENTING, AND WE HAVE SEEN SOME FRUIT FROM THAT LABOR.

UM, AGAIN, A LITTLE BIT MORE OF A PROGRESS UPDATE FOR YOU.

UM, WE ARE CONTINUING TO SEE CONSISTENTLY SINCE JUNE, UH, INCREASED OUR OVERALL COLLECTIONS BY SEVERAL HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS A MONTH.

UM, WE DO HOPE THAT, UH, WHEN WE COME BACK IN NOVEMBER, WE CAN GET YOU SOME MORE DETAILED FINANCIAL INFORMATION AS GIVEN THE RECENTNESS OF THAT, UH, THOSE NUMBERS

[00:15:01]

COMING IN.

WE WANNA MAKE SURE THAT IT IS CONSISTENT AND THAT IT IS, UM, SUSTAINABLE.

SO LOOKING FORWARD TO BEING ABLE TO SHARE WITH YOU THAT, UH, BUT ULTIMATELY WE ARE ANTICIPATING AND ACTUALLY ALREADY HAVE EXCEEDED OUR CYA, UH, PROJECTIONS FOR OUR COLLECTIONS FOR THIS, UH, EXISTING, UH, FISCAL YEAR.

SO WE ARE EXCITED TO SEE WHAT THE NEXT, UH, 10 DAYS HAS IN THE STORE FOR US.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE, ON THE DOCUMENTATION AND COMPLIANCE SIDE, WE DO IDENTIFY THAT THERE IS SIGNIFICANT ROOMS FOR IMPROVEMENT THERE.

UM, WANNA LOOK AT OUR DOCUMENTATION, OUR COMPLETENESS, UH, SOME OF THIS WAS TIED BACK TO THE COVID 19 PANDEMIC WHERE A SIGNATURE CAPTURE GIVEN THE, UH, THE ENVIRONMENT THAT THE STAFF WERE WORKING IN, DROPPED OFF SIGNIFICANTLY.

UM, AS THOSE, UH, WAIVERS ARE PULLED BACK FROM, UH, CMS AND OTHERS, AND WE NEED TO INCREASE THAT COMPLIANCE.

SO WE HAVE TO DO SOME ADDITIONAL TRAINING, PARTICULARLY FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS THAT JOINED US DURING THE COVID 19 PANDEMIC.

AND WE'RE NOT, UM, AS FAMILIAR WITH SOME OF THE STANDARDS THAT PREVIOUSLY EXISTED PRIOR TO THE PANDEMIC.

UM, WE'RE ALSO WORKING TO DO SOME ADDITIONAL TRAINING TO UPDATE THE EXISTING STAFF THAT MAY HAVE, UH, UNDERSTANDINGS AROUND THE, THE DOCUMENTATION REQUIREMENTS FROM SEVERAL YEARS AGO, BEFORE THERE'VE BEEN UPDATES IN THE RULES AND REGULATIONS.

AND SO OVERALL WE WANNA MAKE THAT OUR PRIORITY FROM A EDUCATION AND A CONTINUING EDUCATION STANDPOINT AS WE COME INTO THE NEXT FISCAL YEAR, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE, OUR REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT, UM, ONE PARTICULAR AREA THAT I MENTIONED, THE LAST PRESENTATION THAT WE CONTINUE TO WORK TOWARDS AND ARE JUST ABOUT NEARING COMPLETION IS LEVERAGING OUR STATUS IS AN ACCREDITED, ACCREDITED DISPATCH CENTER AND CONNECTING THAT DISPATCH AND THAT BILLING PROCESS TO ENSURE THAT WE'RE LOOKING AT WHAT OPPORTUNITIES WE HAVE BASED ON THAT ACCREDITED STATUS TO IMPROVE OUR OVERALL REVENUE CAPTURE.

UM, WE DO HAVE SOME OUTDATED RCM, UH, KPIS AND, AND REPORTS THAT WE'RE UTILIZING.

UM, WE HAVE IDENTIFIED THAT WE'VE BEGUN THAT PROCESS OF A DEVELOPING NEW REPORTS AND NEW STANDARDS THAT WE CAN USE TO ENSURE THE PRODUCTIVITY OF THE, UH, REVENUE CYCLE DEPARTMENT AND REALLY DIVING IN VERY DEEPLY, UH, INTO HOW IT IS THAT WE'RE ABLE TO, TO DO THIS BILLING, UH, PROCESS.

UH, AND THEN JUST OVERALL, THERE WAS A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT, UH, LOWER LEVEL PROCESSES, UM, FROM DENIALS MANAGEMENT AND OTHERS.

UM, HOW IT IS THAT WE DO INSURANCE VERIFICATION, UH, THAT ALTHOUGH INDIVIDUALLY MAY BE SMALLER, LESS FOR US, UM, OVER, UH, YOU KNOW, AS A BROADER OVERALL, UH, PROJECT, WE DO ANTICIPATE WE'LL HAVE A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON OUR REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

SO FOR NEXT STEPS, UH, WE ARE CONTINUING TO WORK TOWARDS THAT DOCUMENTATION.

WE HAVE ALREADY BEGUN IMPLEMENTING THAT.

UM, WE ANTICIPATE BY, UH, BY Q2 OF THE FISCAL YEAR THAT WE'LL HAVE COMPLETED DOCUMENTATION ON SIGNATURE REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL OF OUR STAFF, AS WELL AS REVAMP THE ENTIRE PROCESS FOR THE ACADEMY FOR ALL OF THE STAFF THAT ARE ON, UH, ONBOARDING.

UM, WE'RE ALSO IN THE PROCESS, UH, WORKING WITH A VENDOR THAT WE HAVE PREVIOUSLY UTILIZED, UH, TO DEVELOP AN EARLIER LEARNING SYSTEM FOR DATA VALIDATION AS IT IS NOW, IT MAY TAKE SOME TIME WHEN SOMEONE, UH, WE HAVE A DOCUMENTATION ERROR FOR IT TO BE, UH, FLAGGED BY THE BILLING DEPARTMENT.

AND THEN THE PROCESS OF PULLING BACK INTO THOSE PROVIDERS CAN, COULD BE CHALLENGING SEVERAL DAYS LATER.

SO WORKING ON AN EARLY ALERTING SYSTEM THAT WILL PROVIDE DOCUMENTATION AND ALERTS IN REAL TIME TO THE OPERATIONS STAFF TO IDENTIFY, UH, AREAS WHERE THERE MIGHT BE MISTAKES IN THE DOCUMENTATION SO THAT THEY CAN BE CORRECTED BEFORE A CLINICIAN DEPARTS FOR THE DAY.

WE'RE ALSO WORKING VERY CLOSELY WITH THE OFFICE OF THE CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER TO REVAMP OUR PERFORMANCE IMPROVEMENT PROCESS WITH AN INCREASED EMPHASIS ON DOCUMENTATION REVIEW AND ENSURING THAT, UH, IN ADDITION TO FOCUSING ON THE CLINICAL CARE THAT WE GO BACK AND WE LOOK AND SEE HOW WE CAN IMPROVE IT, BUT WE WANNA ALSO IMPROVE THE OVERALL DOCUMENTATION.

AND THEN FINALLY WE'RE WORKING TO IMPLEMENT AN ELECTRONIC HEALTH RECORDS ADVISORY COMMITTEE, UM, SO THAT WE CAN REALLY TIE TOGETHER THAT FEEDBACK THAT WE'RE GETTING FROM THE FRONTLINE CONDITIONS WITH THE IT DEPARTMENT AND THOSE FOLKS THAT ARE ON THE BACK END OF BUILDING OUT THE PROCESS, AS WELL AS THE LEADERSHIP TEAM AND THE BILLING DEPARTMENT THAT KNOWS WHAT THEY NEED TO RECEIVE IN ORDER TO PROPERLY BUILD THOSE CLAIMS. UM, AND SO WE DO ANTICIPATE IN THE NEXT THREE MONTHS TO HAVE THAT, UH, PROCESS IN PLACE WHERE WE CAN GET THAT FEEDBACK NEXT STEP.

NOW, NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

WE ARE EXCITED AND, UH, THANK YOU TO ALL THE COUNCIL MEMBERS FOR THE, UH, APPROVAL FOR THE 11 NEW REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT STAFF THAT WE ANTICIPATE, UM, BEING ABLE TO POST, UH, I GUESS JUST IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS, AS SOON AS THE NEW BUDGET YEAR STARTS, UM, AND WE'LL BE ACTIVELY RECRUITING TO ENSURE THAT WE TRY TO GET THOSE FOLKS ONBOARDED AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.

WE'RE ALSO WORKING VERY QUICKLY.

WE'RE, WE'RE JUST NEAR THE END FOR OUR FORMAL LINKAGE BETWEEN OUR DISPATCH AND OUR BILLING PROCESS AND UPDATING THAT TO ENSURE THAT WE'RE PROPERLY CODING THE CLAIMS THAT ARE GOING OUT, UM, UH, AS THEY TIE BACK TO HOW THOSE CLAIMS WERE DISPATCHED.

AND THEN WE'RE ALSO LOOKING INTO THE SECOND QUARTER, UH, THE BEGINNING OF THE NEXT CALENDAR YEAR TO LOOK HOW IT IS THAT WE CAN FURTHER ENGAGE EXPERTS IN REVENUE CYCLE, UM, MANAGEMENT OPERATIONS, UM, TO REALLY BRING US A, A PLAYBOOK FOR BEST PRACTICES AND PROCESSES AND HELP US BUILD OUT THOSE KPIS AND THOSE REPORTS AND BUILD THEM OUT IN A WAY THAT ARE EFFECTIVE FOR MYSELF AND OTHERS IN, IN OUR DEPARTMENT TO BE ABLE TO REALLY GET A BETTER HANDLE ON EXACTLY WHAT'S HAPPENING ON A DAY TO DAY BASIS IN OUR DEPARTMENT.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE, WITH THAT, I WILL OPEN FOR QUESTIONS.

I HAVE

[00:20:01]

A QUICK QUESTION.

I THINK IT WAS THE SECOND SLIDE AND THEN I'LL CALL ON THE MAYOR.

PROTEM UM, YOU TALK ABOUT CHARITY CARE AND DOES THAT COME FROM ONE ENTITY OR IS THAT A NUMBER? YES, THAT'S A, THAT'S A PAYMENT FROM THE STATE.

AND WHICH DEPARTMENT IS IT FROM THE CONTROLLER, THE STATE CONTROLLER, OR IS IT FROM DHS OR I, IF I COULD ASK MY COLLEAGUE HERE, OR MAYBE THE GOVERNOR'S OFFICE OF CUZ HE HAS CONTROL OVER SOME LAW ENFORCEMENT, I'M NOT SURE WHICH DEPARTMENT IN THE DATA COMES FROM.

IT'S A PASS DOWN DOLLARS FROM, UM, FROM CMS, FROM MEDICARE.

UH, THERE'S A, THERE'S A LARGE POT OF DOLLARS, OKAY.

THAT WE'RE GONNA PROVIDED TO THE STATE.

AND THEN BASED ON THE CLAIMS THAT WE SUBMIT TO THE STATE FOR UNCOMPENSATED CARE FOR THOSE, UH, CLAIMS THAT WE'VE PROVIDED TO INDIVIDUALS THAT, THAT ARE UNABLE TO PAY, UM, THEY LOOK AT THE TOTAL CLAIMS THAT ARE SUBMITTED STATEWIDE AND THEN THEY LOOK AT THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF MONEY THAT IS PROVIDED FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FOR THAT THOSE CLAIMS. AND THEN THEY'RE DIVIDED UP TO THE INDIVIDUAL AGENCIES.

AND SO THAT'S WHY IT'S CHALLENGING FOR US TO KNOW EXACTLY WHAT THAT DOLLAR AMOUNT IS GONNA LOOK LIKE BECAUSE IT'S DEPENDENT ON THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF CLAIMS THAT ARE SUBMITTED BY ALL EMS AGENCIES ACROSS THE STATE.

AND DOES THE ONE 15 WAIVER HAVE ANYTHING TO DO WITH THAT MEDICARE WAIVER? I, I, I WOULD HAVE TO LOOK INTO THAT.

OKAY.

ALL RIGHT.

SO WE DON'T KNOW EXACTLY HOW MUCH IT'LL BE.

WE THINK IT'LL BE BALLPARK WHAT IT WAS LAST YEAR.

WE DO ANTICIPATE A, A MUCH LARGER, SO WHEN WE LOOK BACK, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT WE IMPLEMENTED ACTUALLY PRIOR TO ME COMING INTO THIS ROLE WAS REALLY LOOKING AT WHAT OUR CHARITY CARE PROCESS WAS.

UM, AND LOOKING AT THOSE CLAIMS THAT WE IDENTIFY AS ELIGIBLE FOR CHARITY CARE PAYMENTS.

SO LAST YEAR WE RECEIVED ABOUT 1.2 MILLION MM-HMM , UM, FROM THE STATE.

BUT WE ALSO IDENTIFIED THAT WE HAD SUBMITTED SIGNIFICANTLY LESS CLAIMS THAN WE, THAN WE POTENTIALLY COULD HAVE GAINED, UM, FUNDS BACK FOR.

SO THIS YEAR, UM, ALTHOUGH WE DON'T KNOW THE DOLLAR AMOUNT, WE DID SUBMIT SEVEN TIMES THE NUMBER OF CLAIMS AS WE DID THE YEAR BEFORE.

SO WE DO ANTICIPATE, ALTHOUGH OUR PAYMENT WILL LIKELY NOT BE SEVEN TIMES.

SO WHAT WE RECEIVED LAST YEAR, WE DO EXPECT IT TO BE SEVERAL MILLION DOLLARS HIGHER.

AND DO YOU HAVE A GENERAL SENSE FOR WHEN THAT PAYMENT WILL BE BEFORE THE END OF THE YEAR? CERTAINLY BEFORE THE END OF THE YEAR, I WOULD ANTICIPATE, UH, BY THE END OF OCTOBER AT THE ABSOLUTE LATEST, BUT WE'RE ANTICIPATING WITHIN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS.

SO BY THE TIME I RETURN IN NOVEMBER, I WILL CERTAINLY HAVE INFORMATION FOR YOU.

THANK YOU SO MUCH, MAYOR.

PRETEND YOU HAVE SOME QUESTIONS.

THANK YOU.

GOOD MORNING.

CAN YOU HEAR ME OKAY? YEP.

GREAT.

UM, WELL, GOOD MORNING.

AND, UM, COUNCIL JUST TO FOLLOW UP ON, UM, CHIEF LE'S COMMENTS.

UM, LAST YEAR WHEN WE HAD THE DISPATCH EQUITY STUDY, UM, IT IDENTIFIED THAT CHARITY CARE WAS AN AREA WHERE WE NEEDED TO UPDATE OUR POLICY SO THAT WE COULD BRING IN AS MUCH, UM, DOLLARS AS POSSIBLE WITHOUT HURTING THE, THE SERVICE DELIVERY OR IMPACTING, UM, INDIVIDUALS WHO COULDN'T AFFORD CARE.

UM, AND SO THAT WAS A POLICY THAT, UM, WE IMPLEMENTED, UM, IN, I THINK SEPTEMBER OF LAST YEAR, RIGHT AFTER THE BUDGET, WHEN WE HAD SOME DIRECTION ON FILLING LAST YEAR, BUILDING, BUILDING OUT OF THAT.

UM, AND, AND AS, AS CHIEF LEOS MENTIONED, THERE'S A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF UNCERTAINTY IN, IN THE AMOUNT.

UM, ALTHOUGH THERE'S A FAIR AMOUNT THAT WAS ALREADY ASSUMED IN, IN THE ACTUAL BUDGET.

UM, SO I APPRECIATE, UM, THE PROGRESS THAT'S REC THAT'S, UM, REPRESENTED HERE.

AND I'M GLAD THAT WE WERE ABLE TO, TO BRING IN ADDITIONAL STAFF HERE.

UM, I, I MUST ADMIT TO A CERTAIN LEVEL OF FRUSTRATION THAT WE HAVEN'T GOTTEN FARTHER ENOUGH ON FURTHER ENOUGH ON THE BACKLOG.

UM, DO YOU HAVE A SENSE OF WHETHER WE HAVE COMPLETELY LOST OUT ON BILLING FOR SOME OF THAT 17,000, BECAUSE WE'VE MISSED DEADLINES? I UNDERSTAND THAT THERE'S SOME BILLING SITUATIONS WHERE YOU HAVE TO GET IT IN WITHIN A CERTAIN PERIOD OF TIME.

YES, I, I WOULD THE, THE, THERE'S CERTAINLY SOME OF THOSE CLAIMS WHICH, WHICH POTENTIALLY, UH, WE COULD NOT COLLECT ON.

UM, IT IS NOT THE FULL 17,000 CLAIMS. UH, IT WOULD BE A, A FRACTION OF THAT, THAT WE MAY HAVE MISSED A TIMELY FILING DEADLINE ON, UM, THE, THE DEPARTMENT IS DOING THEIR BEST TO PRIORITIZE THOSE CLAIMS. SO FOR EXAMPLE, THE, THE MEDICAID CLAIMS, WHICH, WHICH HAVE THE STRICTEST TIMELY FILING TO ENSURE THAT THOSE ARE THE ONES THAT WE SUBMIT AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE.

AND SOME OF THOSE COMMERCIAL PAYERS WHERE WE MIGHT NOT HAVE THE SAME TIMELINE REQUIREMENTS AND DELAYING THOSE, UH, THOSE ARE THE ONES WE TEND TO DELAY A LITTLE BIT MORE.

AND ARE YOU TRACKING THE ONES THAT WE'VE MISSED SO THAT WE WOULD, AT SOME POINT BE ABLE TO, TO UNDERSTAND THAT YES, WE DO HAVE THAT INFORMATION.

I DON'T HAVE IT IN FRONT OF ME, BUT WE DO TRACK, UH, ALL OF THOSE DOLLAR AMOUNTS SPECIFICALLY BASED ON THE PAYER, WHAT WAS SUBMITTED, WHAT, AND WE, UH, WE DO RECOGNIZE ON A YEARLY BASIS, WHAT ARE POTENTIALLY MISSED DOLLARS BASED ON A LACK OF TIMELY FILING, UM, AND IN

[00:25:01]

UNDER NORMAL CIRCUMSTANCES, HOW MUCH MONEY IS REPRESENTED BY THE 17,000 THINGS? I WOULD, I, I COULD GET THAT BACK TO YOU.

I COULDN'T, I WOULD FEEL LIKE I WOULD BE MAKING A GUESSTIMATE IF, IF I, IF I STATED THAT RIGHT NOW.

OKAY.

YEAH.

IF YOU COULD GET BACK TO ME ON THAT, AND I'D ALSO LIKE TO SEE, UM, THE REPORTS THAT, THAT ARE MENTIONED IN HERE, UM, THAT HAVE COME BACK, UM, AND AS I UNDERSTAND IT, THERE, THERE ARE, THERE, THERE ARE KIND OF TWO, TWO PARTS TO SOLVING THIS PUZZLE.

THERE'S THE COMPLIANCE SIDE AND MAKING SURE THAT WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING, UM, RIGHT.

WITH RESPECT TO COMPLIANCE, AND THEN THERE'S, UH, A LOOK AT THE REVENUE SIDE AND MAKING SURE THAT WE'RE GENERATING THAT.

CAN YOU EXPLAIN A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT THE DIFFERENCE THERE AND, AND WHAT WE'RE PURSUING WITH RESPECT TO EACH PART? YEAH, ABSOLUTELY.

SO ON THE COMPLIANCE SIDE, UH, WE'RE LOOKING, THE BILLING DEPARTMENT SPENDS A LOT OF TIME LOOKING AT CLAIMS, CLEANING CLAIMS UP TO MAKE SURE THAT, UH, AS THEY'RE SUBMITTED, THAT THEY MEET TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF CMS FOR MEDICAL NECESSITY, UH, THAT THEY HAVE THE REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION THAT THEY'RE CONSISTENT.

UM, THERE'S CERTAIN SIGNATURE REQUIREMENTS.

FOR EXAMPLE, WE NEED CONSENT AND, AND DOCUMENTS FROM THE PATIENT WE NEED, UM, CONSENT FROM SOMETIMES FROM PHYSICIANS AND OTHER PIECES.

THERE'S A LOT OF, UH, NUANCES TO MAKING SURE THAT THE DOCUMENTATIONS, PARTICULARLY FOR MEDICAID AND MEDICARE MEETS THOSE VERY SPECIFIC THINGS THAT NEED TO BE IN THAT DOCUMENTATION OR FOR US TO RECEIVE CLAIMS FOR IT.

UM, YOU'VE HEARD QUESTIONS ABOUT COMPLIANCE AND, AND AUDITS AND OTHER THINGS.

IN ADDITION, UH, WE, BEFORE WE SUBMIT THEM TO MEDICARE OR TO CMS OR TO MEDICAID, WE NEED TO ENSURE, UM, THAT THOSE MEET CERTAIN REQUIREMENTS EVEN TO, TO A HIGHER STANDARD, BECAUSE IF WE DO RECEIVE THOSE PAYMENTS FROM CMS, AND THEN LATER IDENTIFY THAT, THAT WE WERE NOT COMPLIANT, THEN THAT WOULD BE A PAYBACK TO CMS. AND SO WE SPENT EXTRA TIME LOOKING AT THOSE CLAIMS APPROPRIATE TO WHERE THEY NEED TO BE.

UM, AND SO THAT DOES TAKE A TIME FROM OUR BILLING STAFF TO BE ABLE TO DO THAT.

AND THAT IS PART OF THE REASON WHY WE SOMETIMES END UP WITH THIS BACKLOG BECAUSE WE HAVE FOLKS LOOKING AT THOSE CLAIMS AND ENSURING THAT THEY'RE WHERE THEY NEED TO BE.

AND SO BY DRIVING THE COMPLIANCE SIDE AND DRIVING AN IMPROVEMENT IN DOCUMENTATION FROM THE PROVIDERS, WE'RE ABLE TO, UH, IMPROVE THE PROCESS ON THE BILLING DEPARTMENT AND THE REVENUE CYCLE DEPARTMENT.

WE'RE ABLE TO IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF CLAIM THAT WE'RE, WE'RE SENDING TO THE PAYERS AND ENSURE THAT WE'RE, UM, IMPROVE THAT OVERALL COLLECTION RATE, IF YOU WILL, ON THE REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT SIDE, WHICH IS SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT, IT'S LOOKING AT HOW ARE WE OPERATING THE, THE REVENUE CYCLE DEPARTMENT AND HOW ARE WE, UM, WHAT PROCESSES, PROCEDURES, AND, UH, OTHER THINGS HAVE WE PUT INTO PLACE.

SO, FOR EXAMPLE, HOW ARE WE LOOKING AT, UM, THE, THE, THE PROCESS THEY USE FOR WHEN THEY DO DENIAL MANAGEMENT AND AT WHAT TIME IN A PROCESS OVER, UH, FROM WHEN A CLAIM GOES OUT, HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE CLAIM TO GO OUT? AND WHEN DO WE, WHEN DO WE RELEASE THAT CLAIM? UM, AND WHAT DOES THE PROCESS WHEN IT COMES BACK, IF IT IS DENIED TO GET IT BACK OUT TO THE PAYERS.

AND SO ALL OF THOSE ARE VERY NUANCED AND FOLKS THAT HAVE EXPERTISE IN REVENUE CYCLE MANAGE WILL TELL YOU THAT THERE'S VERY SPECIFIC TIMES THAT YOU WANT TO HIT IN ORDER TO MAXIMIZE THE COLLECTIONS THAT YOU CAN GET BACK.

UM, AND SO THAT'S ONE EXAMPLE ON THE REVENUE CYCLE MANAGEMENT, BUT IT'S A LOT OF THAT BACK END PIECE OF HOW DO WE STRUCTURE THE REVENUE CYCLE DEPARTMENT? HOW DO WE, UM, MAKE SURE THAT THE TIME THAT THEY'RE SPENDING IS VALUABLE, UM, AND IS MOST, UH, IS MAXIMIZING THE POTENTIAL FOR REVENUE CYCLE IMPROVEMENTS.

AND THEN TIED TO THAT ON THE OPERATION SIDE, I MENTIONED THAT DISPATCH PIECE IS, ARE WE LEVERAGING ALL THE RESOURCES THAT WE HAVE TO MAXIMIZE THAT REVENUE? SO NOT JUST PROCESSES, BUT ALSO LOOKING AT OTHER SPECIFIC THINGS WE COULD DO SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT, EVEN FROM THE OPERATION SIDE, UM, BEYOND DOCUMENTATION TO, UH, IMPROVE ELIGIBILITY FOR COLLECTIONS.

THANK YOU.

UM, AND, YOU KNOW, LOOKING AT THIS, YOU KNOW, TO REMIND MYSELF THAT QUARTER TWO OF, OF, OF FISCAL YEAR 23 AND COMPLETING IT BY THEN MEANS IT'S, YOU KNOW, WITHIN A YEAR OF YOUR, YOUR COMING ON BOARD.

AND I REALLY DO HOPE THAT WE WILL BE ABLE TO, UM, HAVE MADE VERY SIGNIFICANT PROGRESS AFTER NOT FIXED, UM, THE CHALLENGES, UM, BY THAT TIME, UM, WANNA JUST REMIND MY COLLEAGUES THAT, UM, WHEN, WHEN I INITIATED SOME OF THIS WORK, UM, IN THE LAST BUDGET CYCLE, UM, WITH A BUDGET RIDER, IT WAS ON THE HEELS OF THE DISPATCH EQUITY STUDY, WHICH IDENTIFIED THE POSSIBILITY OF BETWEEN FIVE AND 25,000,020 5 MILLION, UM, IN REVENUE.

AND I'M NOT SURE THAT THAT REALLY EVEN CAPTURED THE FACT THAT WE HAD A BACKLOG, WHICH WOULD PROVIDE ONE TIME MONEY.

UM, WE'VE CAPTURED SOME OF THAT MONEY WITH THE CHARITY CARE, HOPEFULLY, AND WE'LL HAVE A BETTER IDEA WHEN THAT COMES BACK.

UM, BUT THERE'S A LOT OF REVENUE THERE EVEN WITHIN OUR EXISTING FEE STRUCTURE

[00:30:01]

IN THIS YEAR'S BUDGET RIDER RELATED TO THIS, WE ASKED, UM, CITY MANAGER TO COME BACK AND LET US KNOW WHETHER, UM, WE SHOULD BE INCREASING THE FEES IN THE FIRST PLACE.

UM, OUR COST OF SERVICE IS HIGHER THAN WHAT WE ARE CHARGING.

UM, SO THAT SHOULD PROBABLY BE COMING BACK TO US.

I THINK WE SAID IN, IN FIRST QUARTER OF NEXT CALENDAR YEAR, UM, AND IN TALKING WITH THE CHIEF, UM, WE HAD DECIDED TO WAIT ON DOING THAT, NOT DO THAT IN THE BUDGET, UM, THIS YEAR, BECAUSE WE WANTED, WE WANTED TO MAKE SURE, UM, THAT WE HAD FIXED THE BILLING PROCESS AND NOT ADD THAT ADDITIONAL LAYER AT THIS POINT IN TIME.

UM, THANK YOU, CHIEF.

THANK YOU.

MY MIC KEEPS TURNING OFF.

THANK YOU.

ANY OTHER QUESTIONS, COUNCIL MEMBER FUENTES, COUNCIL MEMBER.

TOVO ALL RIGHT.

I DON'T HAVE ANY.

THANK YOU CHAIR.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU, CHIEF.

THANK YOU.

NOW WE WILL MOVE

[2. Approve proposed bylaw amendments for the Commission on Seniors.]

BACK TO OUR DISCUSSION AND ACTION ITEM.

WE HAVE ONE ITEM APPROVED THE PROPOSED BYLAW AMENDMENTS FOR THE COMMISSION ON SENIORS, AND WE HAVE OUR HUMAN RESOURCES STAFF HERE TO WALK US THROUGH.

THANK YOU.

AND WE ARE GETTING PAPER COPIES OF THE BYLAWS WITH THE CHANGES.

SO THOSE WHO ARE WATCHING ON TV, THAT'S LIKELY IN THE BACKUP.

IT IS IT'S IN THE BACKUP.

YES.

VERY GOOD.

THANK YOU.

UM, GOOD MORNING, STEPHANIE HALL HERE, AUSTIN CITY CLERK'S OFFICE.

I'M HERE TO PRESENT THE PROPOSED BYLAWS OF THE COMMISSION ON SENIORS.

THIS IS RELATED TO A RECOMMENDATION THAT THEY PASSED RECENTLY, BUT THEY ALSO JUST RECENTLY TOOK ACTION LAST WEEK TO AMEND THEIR BYLAWS.

I'VE GOT A FEW PROPOSED AMENDMENTS HERE.

THEY ARE.

THE, THE MAIN THING THAT THEY'RE DOING IS EDITING THE NAME OF THE COMMISSION.

THEY'RE PROPOSING A CHANGE FROM THE COMMISSION ON SENIORS TO COMMISSION ON AGING.

AND THAT INCLUDES UPDATING ALL THE RELATED REFERENCES TO SENIORS, TO AGING OR AGING ADULTS AS APPROPRIATE THEIR BUSINESS JUSTIFICATION FOR THIS IS OUTLINED IN GREAT DETAIL IN THE RECOMMENDATION, BUT IN GENERAL, IT IS.

WHEREAS THE TERM SENIORS IS FALLING OUT OF USE WHEN DESCRIBING OLDER ADULTS.

AND WHILE THE TERM AGING BRINGS TO MIND A DYNAMIC PROCESS THAT LEADS TO NEW ABILITIES AND KNOWLEDGE THAT CONTINUES TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE COMMUNITY AND RENAMING THE COMMISSION ON SENIORS TO THE COMMISSION ON AGING WOULD BE CONSISTENT WITH NAMES OF OTHER SIMILAR COMMISSIONS AND WITH THE NAME OF LOCAL STATE AND NATIONAL AGENCIES AND ORGANIZATIONS ADDRESSING THE NEEDS OF OLDER ADULTS.

SO STAFF DEFINITELY RECOMMENDS THIS CHANGE.

IT DOES REQUIRE AN ORDINANCE BECAUSE IT WILL NEED TO UPDATE CITY CODE, BUT WE CAN, WE'RE PLANNING TO ATTACH THAT IF THIS RECOMMENDATION MOVES FORWARD, THE OTHER EDIT IS TO ARTICLE TWO, THE PURPOSE OF DUTIES, AGAIN, JUST CHANGING THAT TO OLDER ADULTS.

AND THEY'RE ALSO ADDING A SECTION IN THEIR BYLAWS THAT DETAILS A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT THEIR MEMBERSHIP REQUIREMENTS.

THIS IS SOMETHING THAT IS ALREADY IN CODE.

IT'S UPDATING THE REFERENCES AGAIN TO SENIORS, TO ADULT OR OLDER ADULTS, BUT THEY'RE ADDING IT TO THEIR BYLAWS, WHICH WE ALSO RECOMMEND.

AND THEN IN EDIT TO ARTICLE EIGHT, AGAIN, JUST CHANGING SENIORS TO AGING STAFF RECOMMENDS ALL THESE UPDATES AND WE DO PLAN ON CREATING THE ORDINANCE IS APPROPRIATE TO CHANGE CODE AS NEEDED, SHOULD THIS RECOMMENDATION MOVE FORWARD.

THAT'S GREAT.

THANK YOU.

UM, I GUESS I'VE BEEN AROUND LONG ENOUGH TO WATCH THE TERMINOLOGY SHIFT FROM AGING TO SENIORS, TO ELDERS, TO OTHER OTHER NAMES, AND I'M IN THAT CATEGORY.

SO I GUESS I'M, I'M WEIGHING THIS FROM A PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE AND IT WORKS OKAY FOR ME.

ANYBODY.

UM, I SEE A THUMBS UP FROM MY COLLEAGUE HERE ON THE DIAS, ANYBODY ONLINE.

UM, I THINK THAT MAYOR PROTE HAS PROBABLY LEFT COUNCIL MEMBER.

TOVO ARE YOU ON THERE? IS THERE ANYTHING YOU WANTED TO SAY? AND I, UM, MAYBE THAT SOUNDS LIKE A VERY GOOD CHANGE.

OKAY, GREAT.

YOU KNOW, I WOULD SAY, UM, TO OUR, TO STEPHANIE, IT MIGHT BE A CONVERSATION YOU WANNA HAVE ALSO WITH THE MAYOR'S COMMITTEE FOR PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES, BECAUSE I THINK THE LANGUAGE AROUND THAT HAS ALSO CHANGED TO A PREFERENCE FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH DISABILITIES.

SO, YOU KNOW, WE MIGHT, WE MIGHT HAVE THAT CONVERSATION WITH, WITH THAT COMMITTEE AS WELL, BUT I APPRECIATE THIS COMMISSION FOR COMING FORWARD WITH THIS RECOMMENDATION, I THINK IS VERY APPROPRIATE.

ANY OTHER COMMENTS OR QUESTIONS? IS THERE A MOTION THEN? UM, AND I CANNOT SEE YOU COUNCIL MEMBER TOVO THERE YOU ARE.

GREAT.

DO I HAVE A MOTION? OKAY.

A MOTION FROM COUNCIL MEMBER FUENTEZ AND A SECOND FROM COUNCIL MEMBER.

TOVO ALL IN FAVOR.

PLEASE RAISE YOUR HAND.

IT LOOKS LIKE UNANIMOUS ON THE DIAS, UH, WITH THE THREE OF US IT'S COUNCIL MEMBERS FUENTEZ TOVO AND POOL.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, MS. HALL.

[00:35:01]

OKAY.

WE HAVE ANOTHER BRIEFING AND THIS IS ON UPDATING THE TIMELINE.

OH NO, WAIT A SECOND.

I JUMPED AHEAD.

LIVING WAGE

[4. Living Wage Procurement Program: Implementing $20/hr. and Piloting Adjustable Living Wage Contracts.]

PROCUREMENT PROGRAM, IMPLEMENTING $20 AN HOUR AND PILOTING ADJUSTABLE LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS.

AND WE HAVE MR. SCARBOROUGH AND MS. WILLETTE.

GOOD MORNING.

THE FLOOR IS YOURS.

GOOD MORNING, MORNING PUSH.

GOOD MORNING, VICE CHAIR AND MEMBERS OF THE COMMITTEE.

UM, UH, MY NAME IS JAMES SCARBOROUGH WITH THE FINANCIAL SERVICES DEPARTMENT, CHIEF PROCUREMENT OFFICER, UH, WITH ME, I HAVE SEAN WILLETT, DEPUTY PROCUREMENT OFFICER, AND WE ARE HERE TO PROVIDE YOU WITH, UH, AN UPDATE REGARDING THE CITY'S LIVING WAGE PROCUREMENT PROGRAM.

UM, AS YOU RECALL, IN THE RECENT ADOPTION OF THE FISCAL YEAR, 2023 BUDGET, UH, COUNCIL DETERMINED THAT THE NEW LIVING WAGE FOR CITY EMPLOYEES WILL BE $20 AN HOUR.

HISTORICALLY, THE LIVING WAGE FOR EMPLOYEES HAS BEEN TIED TO THE CITY'S PROCUREMENT PROGRAM OF, OF THAT SAME NAME.

AND SO DUE TO THAT ADJUSTMENT, UH, WE WILL BE MAKING A SIMILAR ADJUSTMENT TO THE PROCUREMENT PROGRAM.

AND WE WANTED TO, UM, GET IN FRONT OF THIS CONVERSATION WITH COUNCIL AND PROVIDE YOU AN UPDATE ON, ON HOW WE WILL BE IMPLEMENTING THE NEW LIVING WAGE RATE, UH, WITHIN THE CITY'S PROCUREMENT PROGRAM.

SO WITH THAT, I'LL TURN IT OVER TO MY COLLEAGUE, SEAN.

GOOD MORNING, MS. WILLETTE.

GOOD MORNING.

OOPS.

I'M NOT GOOD AT THIS.

ALL RIGHT.

UM, I UH, WOULD LIKE TO START BY JUST BRIEFLY GIVING YOU SOME HISTORY AND BASIC INFORMATION ON THE CURRENT LIVING WAGE PROGRAM.

THE CITY'S LIVING WAGE PROGRAM STARTED IN 2002.

IT WAS INITIALLY LIMITED TO CITY EMPLOYEES, BUT IT WAS QUICKLY THEREAFTER EXPANDED TO APPLY TO CERTAIN CITY CONTRACTS.

AND IT HAS BEEN MODIFIED A FEW TIMES SINCE THAT INITIAL, UM, ROLLOUT.

THE POLICY OBJECTIVE OF THIS IS THAT WE BELIEVE THE MINIMUM HOURLY RATE CONTRACTORS PAY THEIR EMPLOYEES, WORKING UNDER CERTAIN CITY CONTRACTS SHOULD BE CONSISTENT WITH THE MINIMUM HOURLY RATE THAT THE CITY PAYS ITS OWN EMPLOYEES.

THERE ARE SEVERAL PIECES TO THIS CURRENT PROGRAM.

IT APPLIES TO CERTAIN CONTRACT TYPES, SPECIFICALLY THOSE THAT HAVE BEEN COMPETITIVELY AWARDED AND THAT WHERE SERVICES ARE DONE ON CITY PROPERTY OR TO CITY VEHICLES.

UM, THE LIVING WAGE FOR CONTRACTOR EMPLOYEES, AS JAMES SAID EARLIER, IT DOES TRACK WITH, UH, THE LIVING WAGE THAT THE CITY USES ON OR PROVIDES FOR ITS EMPLOYEES AND THE LIVING WAGE.

CURRENTLY, THE WAY IT WORKS IS THAT WHEN A CONTRACT IS AWARDED THE LIVING WAGE RATE, WHEN THE, AT THAT POINT IN TIME IS COVERED AND CARRIED THROUGH THE TERM, UM, OF THE CONTRACT UNTIL IT EXPIRES, UM, NEXT SLIDE.

UM, AS YOU CAN SEE BY THIS NEXT SLIDE, UM, HISTORICALLY THERE HAS NEVER BEEN ANY LIKE REALLY SIGNIFICANT CHANGES ANNUALLY.

SO UP TO THIS POINT IN TIME, UM, IT'S NEVER BEEN ANY, ANY HUGE DIFFERENCE IN THE POINT WHERE A CONTRACT WAS AWARDED AND, YOU KNOW, THREE TO FIVE YEARS LATER WHEN IT EXPIRES, THERE HAS NEVER BEEN A HUGE DIFFERENCE.

HOWEVER, UM, AS NOTED, UM, THIS NEW INCREASE TO $20 AN HOUR WAS SIGNIFICANT ENOUGH THAT WE FELT WE REALLY NEEDED TO LOOK AT OUR PROGRAM AND MAYBE COME UP WITH, UM, DIFFERENT WAYS TO, UM, ADMINISTER IT.

UM, THE UPDATE JAMES IS GONNA GIVE IS GONNA BE, UH, THREE DIFFERENT PARTS.

FIRST ONE IS GONNA BE OUR PLAN FOR NEW LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS, WHICH WILL BE AWARDED AFTER OCTOBER 1ST, 2022.

HE'LL ALSO DISCUSS LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS THAT ARE CURRENTLY IN EXISTENCE AND WHAT WE'RE GONNA DO TO GET THOSE UP TO THE $20 AN HOUR, AS WELL AS DISCUSSING A PILOT THAT WE WANT TO RUN, UM, TO TRY TO ROLL OUT AN ADJUSTABLE LIVING WAGE, UM, FOR THOSE CONTRACTS THAT WOULD BE ABLE TO CHANGE YEAR AFTER YEAR.

EXCELLENT.

SO FOR CURRENT SOLICITATIONS THAT, UM, UH, ARE STILL IN EVALUATION, HAVE NOT BEEN BROUGHT TO COUNSEL FOR, UH, AUTHORIZATION OF THE CONTRACT.

WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO UPDATE THE SOLICITATION INSTRUCTIONS AND THE CONTRACT CLAUSES IN THOSE PROSPECTIVE CONTRACTS, UM, UM, TO INCLUDE THE $20 AN HOUR, UH, LIVING WAGE RATE REQUIREMENT.

UM, THOSE CONTRACTS THAT HAVE BEEN RECENTLY AUTHORIZED AND WERE EXECUTED, UM, NEEDED TO BE EXECUTED UNDER THE PRIOR, UM, LIVING WAGE RATE OF $15 AN HOUR, THEY WILL BE INCLUDED IN OUR TRANSITION PLAN.

AND WE'LL TALK ABOUT THOSE IN A LITTLE WHILE.

WHEN WE TALK ABOUT LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS, WE ARE TALKING ABOUT A SUBSECTION OF THE CITIES, UH, CONTRACTS, UM, AT ANY GIVEN TIME WE HAVE ROUGHLY 5,000 CONTRACTS UNDERWAY OF ALL SIZE AND, AND, AND AMOUNTS.

AND WE ARE TALKING ABOUT, UM, SERVICE

[00:40:01]

CONTRACTS.

SO THAT'S ONE SUBSECTION.

AND THEN OF THE SERVICE CONTRACTS, WE'RE TALKING ABOUT A SPECIFIC SUBSET WHERE THE CONTRACTORS HAVE EMPLOYEES THAT ARE OPERATING OR PERFORMING THE SERVICES ON CITY PROPERTY LIKE CITY STAFF WOULD BE DOING.

AND SO THOSE THAT, THAT THAT'S A MUCH SMALLER SUBSET OF OUR OVERALL CONTRACTS.

SO WHEN WE ARE, UM, UM, TALKING ABOUT ROLLING OUT THESE CHANGES, WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT ROLLING OUT CHANGES TO MANY HUNDREDS OF CONTRACTS.

WE'RE TALKING ABOUT ROLLING OUT THESE CHANGES TO, UM, APPROXIMATELY 300 CONTRACTS.

AND, AND BECAUSE THOSE CONTRACTS DIFFER, WE ROLL OUT THE, THE NEW LIVING WAGE RATE, UH, DIFFERENTLY.

SO THE WAY THAT THE PROGRAM HAS WORKED HISTORICALLY, AS SEAN MENTIONED, IS THAT THE LIVING WAGE RATE IS LOCKED FOR THE TERM OF THE CONTRACT.

SO WHEN THE CONTRACT IS FORMED, THE LIVING WAGE RATE IN PLACE AT THE TIME OF THE CONTRACT EXECUTION WOULD BE MAINTAINED THROUGHOUT THE CONTRACT'S TERM BECAUSE THE CONTRACT IS IN PART, UM, UH, BASED ON THE COMPETITION THAT OCCURRED AT THE TIME OF ITS AWARD, MAINTAINING THE CONDITIONS AROUND THAT COMPETITION THROUGHOUT THE TERM OF THE CONTRACT IS IMPORTANT, BUT THE LENGTH OF THE CONTRACT CAN CAUSE THE, THE LIVING WAGE RATE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE CONTRACT TO DIFFER FROM WHAT IT IS TOWARDS THE END OF THE CONTRACT.

SO WE REALIZED OVER THE YEARS THAT HAVING VERY LONG CONTRACT TERMS CAN CAUSE A, A DISCONNECT BETWEEN THE CURRENT LIVING WAGE RATE AND THE LIVING WAGE RATE.

THAT WAS THE IN PLACE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE CONTRACT WITH THE RECENT, UM, LARGER INCREASE IN THE LIVING WAGE RATE, THAT THAT DIFFERENCE IS MORE PRONOUNCED.

AND SO WHAT WE ARE DOING, UM, IN THE NEXT COMING YEARS IS GOING TO BE, UM, TRANSITIONING THE CONTRACTS, THE LIVING WAGE RATE CONTRACTS TO THE NEW LIVING WAGE RATE.

UM, UM, NATURALLY IF THERE ARE NO MORE EXTENSIONS REMAINING OR IN AN EXPEDITED MANNER, UM, UH, SO THAT WE CAN MOVE THEM TO THE NEW LIVING RATE RATE SOONER THAN THEY OTHERWISE WOULD BE.

NEXT SLIDE, PLEASE.

SO, AS YOU CAN SEE HERE, UH, WE HAVE ROUGHLY, UH, UH, 300, UM, THERE HAVE BEEN A, A FEW MORE CONTRACTS AWARDED SINCE THE SLIDE HAS BEEN CREATED.

SO IT, IT COULD BE SLIGHTLY OVER 300 AS WE IMPLEMENT THIS TWO YEAR PLAN, UH, WE'RE GONNA DO SO IN THREE PRIORITIES.

THE FIRST PRIORITY WILL BE FOR THOSE OLDER CONTRACTS THAT REFLECT A LIVING WAGE RATE THAT IS LOWER THAN THE CURRENT $15 AN HOUR.

WE WANT TO, UM, UM, CONVERT THOSE CONTRACTS ALL BY THE END OF THIS COMING FISCAL YEAR.

AND THAT'S REALLY KIND OF ONE OF THE DRIVERS OF THIS PRESENTATION, UNLIKE THE LIVING WAGE RATE, PAID TO CITY EMPLOYEES THAT WOULD INITIATE UPON THE BEGINNING OF THE NEW FISCAL YEAR, WE CAN'T ALSO INITIATE LIVING WAGE UNDER OUR CONTRACTS THE SAME WAY WE HAVE TO THEN CONVERT THOSE CONTRACTS.

AND SOME, SOME CONVERSIONS WILL BE THROUGH NEW SOLICITATION, NEW AWARD OF CONTRACT.

SOME CONVERSIONS WILL BE THROUGH A, UH, A NEGOTIATION.

IF THAT CONTRACT TYPE IS ABLE TO BE NEGOTIATED, OTHERS WILL BE, UH, SIMPLY CONFIRMING THAT THE CONTRACTOR ALREADY PAYS WELL ABOVE THE LIVING WAGE, THE NEW LIVING WAGE RATE, AND, AND NO ACTION IS NEEDED.

WE'LL JUST LET THAT CONTRACT EXPIRE NATURALLY.

BUT THE PRIORITY ONE WILL BE, UM, TO CONVERT ALL OF THE OLDER CONTRACTS AT A LOWER THAN $15, UM, AN AN HOUR LIVING WAGE RATE BY THE END OF THE COMING FISCAL YEAR.

THAT DOESN'T MEAN THAT WE WILL WAIT TO THE END OF THE FISCAL YEAR.

IT JUST MEANS THAT WE WILL HAVE THEM ALL PROCESSED BY THE END OF THE FISCAL YEAR.

AND AS YOU CAN SEE, THE LARGER NUMBER OF THEM WILL BE, UH, EXPIRING NATURALLY, THEY'RE ALREADY ON OUR SOLICITATION SCHEDULE.

THERE WON'T BE ADDITIONAL EFFORT NEEDED TO REPLACE THEM.

LIKE THERE WILL BE IN THE SECOND SUB-CATEGORY THAT THEY WILL, THESE CONTRACTS WILL EXPIRE LATER THAN 2023.

WE WILL EITHER REPLACE THEM EARLY, OR WE WILL AMEND THEM SO THAT THEY REFLECT THE NEW, UH, $20 AN HOUR LIVING WAGE RATE PRIOR.

YES.

MINUTE, HOLD ON A SECOND.

YES, MR. SCARBOROUGH, COULD WE MOVE THE LITTLE SQUARE SO WE COULD SEE WHAT MIGHT BE UNDERNEATH THERE? I DON'T KNOW IF THERE'S A NUMBER UNDER THERE.

YES, THERE IT IS.

33.

OKAY.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

SO PRIORITY TO THESE ARE CONTRACTS AT THE CURRENT LIVING WAGE RATE OF $15 AN HOUR.

IT'S A LARGER PORTION OF THE OVERALL LIVING WAGE RATE CONTRACTS, THOSE CONTRACTS THAT EXPIRE BEFORE THE END OF THE NEXT FISCAL YEAR, THEY WILL BE REPLACED AS USUAL.

AND AGAIN, DOESN'T MEAN THAT WE'RE GONNA WAIT UNTIL 2024.

IT JUST MEANS THAT WE WILL HAVE THEM

[00:45:01]

PROCESSED ALL BY THE END OF 2024.

UH, THERE IS A LARGER NUMBER, A BIT MORE THAN A HUNDRED THAT WE WILL NEED TO EITHER REPLACE EARLY, OR WE WILL AMEND THEM EARLY.

THE GOAL IS SO THAT BY THE END OF FY 2024, THAT WE ARE ALL CAUGHT UP WITH OUR LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS, AT LEAST TO THE NEW $20 AN HOUR RATE, THEN GOING FORWARD AS WE, UM, MANAGE THE PROGRAM, WE WILL DO SO UNDER SOME, SOME DIFFERENT, UM, CONTRACT, UM, UH, PARADIGMS SO THAT IT WILL BE LESS LIKELY THAT THE CONTRACTS WILL BECOME TOO FAR BEHIND THE CURRENT LIVING WAGE RATE PRIORITY THREE WILL BE FOR THOSE CONTRACTS THAT WE HAVE CONFIRMED THAT THE CONTRACTOR ALREADY EXCEEDS $20 AN HOUR.

WE WILL CONVERT THOSE AS POSSIBLE, BUT THEY WILL, UM, FOR THE MOST PART ARE ALREADY MEETING THE, UM, THE POLICY OBJECTIVE OF THE PROGRAM.

NEXT SLIDE PLEASE.

SO IF YOU'LL RECALL BACK IN 2019, UM, IN COUNCIL'S CONTRACT LABOR RESOLUTION, UM, THERE WERE A NUMBER OF ITEMS ADDRESSED IN THAT RESOLUTION, BUT ONE, UM, ITEM THAT WAS ALSO INCLUDED WAS A REQUEST THAT WE DEVELOP A MECHANISM FOR ADJUSTING THE LIVING WAGE RATE DURING THE COURSE OF A CONTRACT'S TERM.

SO WE'VE, WE'VE IN THE LAST COUPLE OF YEARS, UM, YOU KNOW, WHILE ATTENDING TO A NUMBER OF OTHER, UM, OPERATIONAL CHALLENGES.

WE'VE ALSO BEEN LOOKING OUT ACROSS THE PRACTICE, UH, OF OUR, OF OUR COLLEAGUES IN OTHER GOVERNMENTS, WHETHER THEY BE STATE LOCAL GOVERNMENT, FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, WHAT HAVE YOU, UM, LOOKING FOR, UH, SIMILAR APPROACHES IN ADJUSTING LIVING WAGE RATES, UM, DURING THE, THE COURSE OF THE CONTRACT'S LIFE, WE'VE DEVELOPED A, AN APPROACH TO DO THIS, UH, BUT TO BE QUITE, UM, UH, HONEST, WE HAVE NOT FOUND ANOTHER, UM, ENTITY, UM, APPLYING THIS TYPE OF APPROACH.

WE WOULD LIKE TO TAKE A MOST LIKELY SAMPLE OF OUR LIVING WAGE CONTRACTS AND APPLY THIS PARTICULAR APPROACH TO MAKE SURE THAT IT WORKS.

WE'RE PRETTY CONFIDENT THAT IT'LL WORK, BUT WE WOULD LIKE TO APPLY THIS, THIS TECHNIQUE A FEW TIMES, AND IT'S GONNA BE A COMBINATION OF A DIFFERENT SOLICITATION TYPE WITH A FEW EXTRA STEPS AND A DIFFERENT CONTRACT APPROACH.

UM, AGAIN, WITH A FEW EXTRA STEPS, UH, LIMITATION ON LENGTH, UH, SYNCING THE, UH, THE EACH CONTRACT TERM TO THE FISCAL YEAR AND WHAT HAVE YOU.

BUT WE WOULD LIKE TO TRY THAT OUT FOR A PERIOD OF TIME AND BECAUSE LIVING WAGE RATES ADJUST ON THE FISCAL YEAR, WE NEED AT LEAST ONE ADJUSTMENT TO SEE IF THIS TECHNIQUE WORKS.

SO, SO, YOU KNOW, IT'S NOT A PILOT THAT WE COULD RUN IN A FEW MONTHS.

THIS PILOT NECESSARILY NEEDS TO BE AT LEAST AT LEAST TWO YEARS LONG, UM, TO GET US THROUGH THE CHANGE OF THE LIVING WAGE AND THEN THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE LIVING WAGE IN THE CONTRACT, WHICH COULD TAKE ANOTHER FEW MONTHS.

SO WE ARE DEVELOP THOSE TECHNIQUES AND APPROACHES, AND WE WOULD LIKE TO IMPLEMENT THEM, COME BACK AND UPDATE YOU ON HOW THAT IMPLEMENTATION IS GOING.

UH, SOMETIME THIS YEAR IN FY 23.

AND, UM, WITH THAT, HOPEFULLY IF, UH, THE EXPERIENCE WITH THE ADJUSTMENTS OF THE LIVING WAGE RATE ARE SUCCESSFUL, THEN WE COULD COME BACK WITH A RECOMMENDATION AND UPDATE THE, UH, THE, UH, THE APPLICABLE REGULATIONS AND ORDINANCE ASSOCIATED WITH THIS PROGRAM, UM, TO THEN BE ABLE TO APPLY, APPLY IT OVER A LARGER GROUP OF, OF OUR CONTRACTS.

SO IN SUMMARY, THE REASON FOR THE UPDATE IS SO THAT, UM, WE CAN CLARIFY THAT WHEN, UH, COUNCIL UPDATED LIVING WAGE FOR THE EMPLOYEES, THERE IS A RELATED UPDATE TO ITS PROCUREMENT PROGRAM, BUT THE PROCUREMENT PROGRAM FUNCTIONS SOMEWHAT DIFFERENTLY.

AND IT WILL TAKE, THERE'S A, THERE'S A NATURAL LAG BETWEEN WHEN A NEW LIVING WAGE RATE OCCURS AND HOW IT IS APPLIED IN THE RESULTING CONTRACT.

WE ARE APPLYING IT.

WE JUST WANTED TO CLARIFY HOW WE'RE APPLYING IT AND THEN ANSWER ANY OF YOUR QUESTIONS WITH REGARD TO THE PROGRAM OR HOW THE PROGRAM WILL PROCEED IN THE FUTURE.

BUT THAT'S IN ESSENCE, OUR OVERVIEW, OUR SUMMARY OF, OF THE PROGRAM, WE'RE READY TO ENTERTAIN OUR QUESTIONS THAT YOU MIGHT HAVE.

GREAT.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

THIS LOOKS GOOD TO ME.

AND, UM, I THINK, DID YOU MENTION SOMETHING ABOUT, THIS IS MAYBE THE FIRST TIME THIS SORT OF APPROACH IS BEING DONE? UH, MAYBE NATIONALLY.

YEAH.

UM, WE'VE REACHED, UM, LOCALLY STATEWIDE AND NATIONALLY, AND I HAVE NOT BEEN ABLE TO FIND ANOTHER ENTITY THAT ALLOWS DURING A CONTRACT TERM, THE ABILITY TO CHANGE A LIVING WAGE

[00:50:01]

RATE.

AND SO THAT'S PART OF WHY WE WANT THE PILOT IS JUST, WE WANNA MAKE SURE THAT OUR APPROACH IS GONNA WORK BECAUSE WE CAN'T FIND ANY PRECEDENT FOR IT.

YEAH.

OKAY.

WHAT QUESTIONS WE HAVE COUNCIL MEMBER FUNDUS.

WONDERFUL.

THANK YOU.

UM, THIS IS A REALLY GREAT UPDATE.

I'M EXCITED AND THRILLED TO SEE THAT THIS IS ANOTHER AREA THAT AUSTIN OUR CITY IS, IS LEADING IN.

AND KNOWING THAT OUR, OUR STAFF ARE JUST, ARE JUST AS COMMITTED AND PILOTING SOME INNOVATIVE APPROACHES AND HOW WE CAN CONTINUE TO ADJUST THE LIVING WAGE IS INCREDIBLE.

SO THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU.

UM, THAT IS GONNA GO A LONG WAY WITH OUR COMMUNITY.

IN FACT, ONE OF THE, UM, FEEDBACK THAT WE HEARD FROM OUR COMMUNITY WAS THE FACT THAT YES, WE ARE GOING TO $20 PER HOUR, BUT THAT'S STILL NOT SUFFICIENT.

AND SO I THINK THIS PILOT PROGRAM, UM, WILL CERTAINLY GO A LONG WAY IN ESTABLISHING EVEN BETTER APPROACHES AND MECHANISMS FOR US TO CONTINUE TO HELP ADDRESS AFFORDABILITY, UM, AND TO ADDRESS OUR STAFFING SHORTAGES AS WELL.

UM, SO YOU, YOU, I THINK YOU, FOR THE LAYOUT, YOU TALKED ABOUT HOW, UM, WHAT YOU LAID OUT TODAY IS A SUBSECTION OF A SECTION OF THE 5,000 CONTRACTS THAT THE CITY HAS.

UM, AND, AND SO CAN YOU TALK ME THROUGH OF THOSE AROUND 300 CONTRACTS THAT, UM, THAT YOU'LL BE WORKING ON OVER THE COURSE OF THE NEXT YEAR OR SO? UM, WHAT KIND OF SECTORS, WHAT INDUSTRIES ARE COVERED WITHIN THAT SERVICE SCOPE COUNCIL MEMBER? THAT'S A GREAT QUESTION.

UM, AGAIN, THE, THE CONDITIONS FOR THE LIVING WAGE PROCUREMENT PROGRAM, UM, UH, ARE, UH, TIED TO SERVICE CONTRACTS WHERE THE WORK IS ACTUALLY BEING DONE ON CITY PROPERTY.

THAT INCLUDES WORK DONE ON CITY VEHICLES, WHERE THE WORK, UH, CAN BE DIFFERENTIATED BY, UM, UM, CONTRACTOR EMPLOYEES THAT ARE DIRECTLY ASSIGNED TO THE CONTRACT.

SOMETIMES YOU'LL HAVE CONTRACTOR EMPLOYEES THAT ARE SERVING CITY CONTRACTS AND NON-CITY CONTRACTS, NON-CITY CUSTOMERS AT THE SAME TIME.

AND SO THEIR, THEIR TIME CAN'T REALISTICALLY BE DIVIDED.

SO IF THEY'RE, THEY'RE PAID AT ONE RATE UNDER ONE CONTRACT AND ONE RATE, A DIFFERENT RATE UNDER ANOTHER CONTRACT, THEY'RE NOT WHAT WE WOULD CALL DIRECTLY ASSIGNED.

WE NEED TO BE ABLE TO SIT TO, TO IDENTIFY THOSE EMPLOYEES THAT ARE DIRECTLY ASSIGNED.

SO BECAUSE OF THOSE CONDITIONS OF OUR MANY HUNDREDS OF CONTRACTS, THOSE THAT ACTUALLY MEET THOSE CRITERIA, UM, UM, RIGHT NOW ARE ABOUT 300, BUT THAT NUMBER HAS BEEN CREEPING UP OVER THE YEARS.

UM, SO IS THIS, FOR EXAMPLE, OUR HOTELS, THE CITY OWNS TWO HOTELS.

WE HAVE WORKERS WITHIN THOSE HOTELS THAT PROVIDE THAT WORK IN THE SERVICE INDUSTRY.

WOULD THEY BE INCLUDED IN THIS 300 CONTRACT SEGMENT? I DON'T BELIEVE THAT WE DO.

WE, THERE IS A FINANCIAL RELATIONSHIP WITH THE, WITH THE HOTELS, BUT I DON'T BELIEVE THAT WE OVERSEE THOSE PARTICULAR CONTRACTS.

THAT'S RIGHT WITH, WE DO NOT, NOT THE, NOT THE STAFF.

OKAY.

OKAY.

AND WHAT ABOUT THE CONCESSIONS AT THE AIRPORT? HOW DOES THAT WORK? IT'S THE SAME, RIGHT? THE, THE CONCESSIONS CONTRACTS AT THE, AT THE AIRPORT ARE DONE BY THE AVIATION DEPARTMENT.

UM, THEY ARE SUBJECT TO FEDERAL PROCUREMENT REGULATIONS AND TO THE EXTENT THAT THEY CAN APPLY CITY PROCUREMENT REGULATIONS, THEY DO.

UM, BUT WHEN THEY CANNOT, THEY, THEY DO NOT APPLY THEM.

SO BECAUSE THEY'RE NOT SUBJECT TO THE PURVIEW OF THE FINANCIAL SERVICES DEPARTMENT, IT'S NOT SOMETHING THAT I CAN ANSWER IMMEDIATELY, BUT I'M AB I'M GLAD TO GET THAT INFORMATION FOR YOU.

YEAH, I WOULD, I WOULD LIKE TO CONTINUE THAT CONVERSATION.

UM, NOT ONLY BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, THE AIRPORT IS BASED IN, IN MY DISTRICT, BUT SURE.

UM, THERE ARE MANY WORKERS, UH, THAT WOULD BE IMPACTED AND I WANNA MAKE SURE THAT THERE'S, THERE'S AN OPPORTUNITY FOR US TO ENSURE THAT THEY ALSO RAISE THEIR, THEIR WAGE.

I WANNA BE ALL OVER IT.

SO, UH, THE OTHER THING, THE OTHER QUESTION I HAVE IS AROUND, UM, OH, I JUST LOST IT.

WHAT WAS IT? OH, UH, WE HAVE REALLY BIG INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS COMING ONLINE WITH PROJECT CONNECT AND WITH THE AIRPORT EXPANSION.

UM, WOULD ANY OF THESE SERVICE CONTRACTS BE, UM, AS PART OF THOSE TWO INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS, COUNCIL MEMBER, POSSIBLY MANY OF THE CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS, BECAUSE THEY ARE A, A PROJECT CONTRACT, ESSENTIALLY THE NATURE OF THAT COMPETITION IS BASED ON A KNOWN QUANTITY AND A COMMITMENT AT THE TIME OF THE CONTRACT.

AND SO WHEN WE MAKE A COMMITMENT AT THE TIME OF THE CONTRACT, THE CONDITIONS OF THAT COMMITMENT HAVE TO MAINTAIN THROUGHOUT THE TERM OF, OF, OF THAT CONTRACT.

SO WHEN WE ARE TALKING ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF ADJUSTING THE LIVING WAGE RATE, WE ARE, ARE TARGETING THOSE CONTRACTS THAT ARE, MULTI-TERM WHERE THERE ARE INDEFINITE QUANTITIES.

THERE'S NO DEFINITE COMMITMENT.

AND SO WHEN WE CHANGE THE CONDITIONS, THE PRICING IN THAT CONTRACT WOULD CHANGE, BUT IT WOULD CHANGE FOR

[00:55:01]

ALL ORDERS GOING FORWARD.

THOSE CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTS ARE SUBJECT TO, UH, STATE AND FEDERAL REGULATIONS WITH REGARD TO PREVAILING WAGE.

AND SO WE WILL MAINTAIN THE PREVAILING WAGE PROGRAM AS IT IS CURRENTLY ESTABLISHED, WHICH DOES INCLUDE THE CITY'S LIVING WAGE AS ITS MINIMUM RATE.

BUT THOSE, THOSE, THOSE, UM, PREVAILING WAGES ARE LOCKED IN AT THE TIME OF THE CONTRACT'S AWARD.

AGAIN, BECAUSE THE COMMITMENT IS MADE AT THE TIME OF AWARD, AS OPPOSED TO THESE, THESE OTHER INDEFINITE QUANTITIES SERVICES, CONTRACTS, WHERE THE COMMITMENT IS AT THE ORDER LEVEL.

SO THAT THERE'S MANY DIFFERENT COMMITMENTS AND THE, AND THE PRICE WOULDN'T BE LOCKED AT THOSE COMMITMENTS, BUT WE CAN CHANGE THE LIVING WAGE RATES IN CERTAIN OF THOSE CONTRACTS.

THE, THE COMMITMENT IS MADE ALL AT ONE TIME IN A CONSTRUCTION CONTRACT UPFRONT, AND THE THEREFORE THE CONDITIONS INCLUDING THE LIVING WAGE WOULD THEN BE MAINTAINED THROUGHOUT THAT, THAT CONTRACT.

OKAY.

SO MOST LIKELY, YES.

CAUSE I KNOW WITH PROJECT CONNECT, WE'RE STILL IN THE DESIGN PHASE.

SO THE CONSTRUCTION CONTRACT, UH, PHASE IS YET TO COME AT WHICH POINT WHO KNOWS WE MIGHT EVEN HAVE LIVING WAGE BY THEN, BUT THEY WOULD ALL BE AWARDED AT THE LIVING WAGE RATE.

SO THEY AWARDED AFTER OCTOBER ONE, IT'LL BE $20.

YEAH.

IF IT'S A DIFFERENT RATE, UM, AFTER OCTOBER, UH, ONE OF 20, 24, THEN IT WILL BE THAT RATE.

GOOD DEAL.

WONDERFUL.

THANK YOU SO MUCH.

I APPRECIATE IT.

THANK YOU.

YEAH, THE CITY'S REACH IN, IN WAGES, IN CONTRACTING IS WHY I SUPPORT THE FEDERAL MINIMUM WAGE BE RAISED.

AND I MEAN, IT'S EGREGIOUSLY LOW AND HASN'T BUDGED, UH, IN ANY SIGNIFICANT FASHION FOR DECADES.

UM, I REMEMBER ANSWERING A QUESTION LIKE THAT ON A CAMPAIGN QUESTIONNAIRE.

WHERE IS IT THAT, WHERE, WHO DO YOU THINK, WHAT LEVEL OF GOVERNMENT DO YOU THINK SHOULD BE SETTING THE MINIMUM WAGE? AND WHILE I AM HAPPY TO BE INCREASING IT HERE AT THE CITY LEVEL, IT DOES END UP HAVING SOME INEQUITIES ELSEWHERE IN THE STATE.

AND THE ONLY WAY YOU CAN REALLY ADDRESS THE CONCERN, WHICH IS A NATIONAL CONCERN ABOUT THE COST OF LIVING, NO MATTER WHERE YOU LIVE, THAT REALLY DOES NEED TO BE NOT EVEN AT A STATE LEVEL, THAT IN MY, IN, IN MY ESTIMATION REALLY NEEDS TO BE AN ISSUE THAT IS TAKEN UP BY CONGRESS.

I SEE THAT COUNCIL MEMBER TOBO HAD HER HAND UP.

YES.

AND YOU ARE MUTED OR, OR MAYBE WE HAVE THE SQUEAKY VOICE.

YEAH.

IT'S THE, THE AUDIO IS, DO YOU WANNA CALL US ON YOUR PHONE? WE'LL WE'LL HOLD.

AND WHILE WE WAIT FOR THE ELECTRONICS TO BEHAVE THEMSELVES, WE'LL JUST HANG LOOSE.

AND I SEE COUNCIL MEMBER TOVO TRYING TO COME BACK.

IS THE SOUND ANYBODY NOW? YES, THAT IS