08/24/2012

Ottawa, Ontario, August 24, 2012. The Honourable Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, and immediate AMO Past President Gary McNamara, presented a P.J. Marshall Plaque Award to Waterloo Region and seven transit systems.
The Award was for the Transit Inventory Management Services initiative – a cooperative parts procurement approach that has increased efficiency and reduced inventory and administration costs.

The Award was presented August 21, on the main stage of the 2012 AMO Conference in Ottawa. The Plaque was awarded to the Region of Waterloo on behalf of Grand River Transit, Brampton Transit, London Transit, Burlington Transit, Oakville Transit, Hamilton Street Railway and York Region Transit. A Plaque Award recognizes projects that exemplify all of the P.J. Marshall Award’s criteria: innovation, tangible benefits, improved efficiency, innovative financing and transferability.

“This coordinated purchase of bus parts gives our industry greater leverage to negotiate better pricing and to ensure the parts are available as needed, which ultimately supports Grand River Transit’s goal of providing cost effective and reliable transit services in Waterloo Region,” said Eric Gillespie, Director, Transit Services, Region of Waterloo. 

The new consolidated procurement model provides a more stable and streamlined supply chain for all participating transit systems. It is also the first initiative in North America to consolidate the parts procurement of multiple transit systems. 

This new approach enables municipalities to reduce spending, eliminate the risk of inventory obsolescence, improve efficiency and economies of scale, and leave a smaller carbon-footprint. Now, these smaller municipal transit systems can enjoy the power and price incentives that were only afforded to larger municipal systems. 

“This impressive project exemplifies the spirit of municipal innovation and cooperation for working beyond geography and internal controls to provide real benefits to multiple communities,” said immediate past AMO President Gary McNamara.    

The program has already produced impressive results, including 15 per cent cost savings, an increase in order completions within 24-hours from 28 to 100 per cent, and a significant reduction in material handling times.

The P.J. Marshall Award is an annual competitive process organized by AMO that involves the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing and the Centre for Public Private Partnerships. Awards acknowledge municipalities who have demonstrated leadership and innovation and in public-private partnerships. Submissions by Ontario municipalities are judged by a panel on their creativity and success in implementing new, innovative ways of serving the public. 

This year, two Certificates of Merit were presented alongside the Plaque Award. Certificates of Merit are awarded to projects that meet some, but not necessarily all of the P.J. Marshall Award’s criteria. The Certificates were presented to the City of Hamilton, for processing biogas into natural gas for use in City vehicles and into Union Gas distribution at  its Woodward Avenue Wastewater Treatment Plant, and the City of Brampton, for its use of IT solutions to improve Fire Services response times. 

AMO is a non-profit organization representing almost all of Ontario’s 444 municipal governments.  AMO supports strong and effective municipal government in Ontario and promotes the value of municipal government as a vital and essential component of Ontario and Canada’s political system.  

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