Monday, July 22, 2024

Long day care goes to tender

Cumberland City Council will be moving to a select tender process in early 2021, for an external provider to manage its long day care services.

Council recently completed an Expression of Interest (EOI) process, which concluded on 28 September.

Cumberland City Council’s General Manager, Hamish McNulty, said there is a need to reduce the cost of Education and Childcare services, which is paid for by all Cumberland City ratepayers.

“We have a responsibility to every ratepayer in Cumberland City to ensure our services are delivered in the most cost-effective way possible,” Mr McNulty said.

“Council’s financial situation is well-known and there is currently a high level of subsidy for these services, with them running at a significant loss of millions of dollars each year.

“We have been talking to the market to determine the most efficient operating model for Council-run childcare services and to determine whether interested parties have the capacity to deliver these services to a better standard than we currently do, and in a way that is more financially sustainable than the current model.

“This is about ensuring a fair outcome for the families who use our long day care services and more than 70,000 ratepayers who currently subsidise the service.

“Following the expression of interest process, we’ll be talking to a select group of providers who we believe are capable of providing these services and in a way that represents better value for money.”

In parallel with the select tender process, Council is working with the United Services Union to develop a proposal to run these services at a significantly reduced subsidy.

“Council is working with Union representatives and childcare staff to see if the cost to Council of running these services can be reduced to a sustainable level,” said Mr McNulty.

If an in-house proposal is not a viable alternative and these services are to be managed by another provider, Council will retain ownership of the sites and buildings which provide these services.

An outcome on the select tender process is expected in the first half of 2021.

Latest Articles