It's starting up with the citizen boards for the city, and how much it costs. On the ceeb's website today:
5 questions Hamilton's new council will have to ask itself
OK, 68 committees seems like a lot. But I don't know. Twenty more than Toronto has seems like bloat, offhand, but let's turn that around -- does Toronto have enough? What if 68 is the really the number we need, and 48 really the number Toronto needs? It's a useless stat once you actually look at it.
But wait -- there's more!
Staff estimate they [citizen advisory boards] have cost the city more than $400,000 over the last four years. Refreshments alone have cost $9,200.
OK. Let's break this down. $400K over four years means $100K a year, over 68 boards. Let's assume they all spend equal time (which they don't), and $100K/68 = $1,470 per board per year. That's not a lot. Let's go further, and assume there's ten meetings a year, like ours (which a lot aren't). That's $147 a meeting. Divide that further, and that's $16 bucks a head for each meeting.
Now, we're all experts, otherwise we wouldn't be on those boards. You get me for two to three hours per meeting, and I (theoretically) bill at $300 an hour. So you're getting my services of $600 to $900 for $16. That's a fucking steal, no matter how you look at it (although I'm likely at the high end, but who knows?). Nevermind the hours I put in outside of the actual meeting. It's a ridiculous metric to look at. Yes, it's a cost of $100K a year, but the expertise labour you're getting back for it? C'mon.
And $9,200 for coffee. Divided by 68 boards, $135 a year. $13 a meeting. You go to Tim Hortons and get coffee for everybody and bring it back to the meeting and serve and clean up for thirteen bucks.
The work still has to be done. Take it away from the volunteers, and it goes back as a direct labour cost to the City. You see how far that $100K goes then.