Is the Village of Bolingbrook using Toyota’s “lean” techniques to become more efficient? Sources with connections with relatives within Village Hall claim there is a secret commission tasked with creating a “leaner” government.
According to John, an alleged member of the commission, “We were really honored when (Mayor Roger Claar) said last Tuesday that Village Hall is so efficient, the trustees don’t need to vote no on any resolution.”
John also says that the “Toyota Commission” recommended merging Bolingbrook’s police and fire departments. A recommendation that Claar accepted.
“We started by asking why we needed a separate fire and police department. Every time we got an answer, we kept asking why. Finally, both department officials broke down, and finally said, ‘We give up! Go ahead and merge us!’ Never underestimate the power of why!”
Jessica, another alleged member of the “Toyota Commission”, says despite the commission’s successes, they has been some resistance to their plans.
“One time, a member told Roger that the Trustee position is an example of Muda in the government. He asked what it meant. When we told him Muda meant waste, he described that member using an unpleasant word for human waste.”
Jessica says the committee still feels the Trustee position offers no value to governing Bolingbrook.
“It’s expensive to hold an election, that, at best, will appoint people who will just agree with Roger. Now that’s the best case. It can be worse. A resident opposed to Roger might be under the mistaken impression that it is OK to run for Trustee. Then Roger’s supporters have to take time out of their busy schedule to challenge the nominating petitions. If there is a problem with the petitions, Roger has to take time out of his busy schedule to hear the challenges. If the candidate survives the challenge, then Roger has to take time out of his schedule to write a letter to his supporters urging them not to vote for the rouge candidate. Come on! That just screams Muda.”
Jessica added that she hopes the village doesn’t return to the “dark ages” when opposing trustees were elected to the village board.
“Can you imagine how much time was wasted with all the debates between Mayor Bob Bailey and trustee Edward Rosenthal? Then when Ed was elected mayor, there was so much Muda generated between Roger and him. Where would Bolingbrook be now if the village had just appointed Roger mayor in the 1970s?”
The commission says that removing the Trustee position is a long term goal that will require the state of Illinois to change its laws governing municipalities.
Still, according to John, the Toyota Commission and Claar do agree on the “Future State” of Bolingbrook.
“We want a future state where the Mayor is able to pull what he wants from the village government and the government replies without overburdening any of its employees. It will take lots of kaizen events to pull it off, but we believe it is possible!”
The next event, according to Joan, involves media coverage of government activities.
“For example, sometimes there are no reporters at Village Board meetings. Some times there are way too many. We’re working on a plan to establish a media pool. The village will designate one or more reporters to cover all meetings, and they will be granted exclusive interviews with village officials. Other media outlets can then use the pool reporters’ stories. Kind of like how Bolingbrook Patch gets some of their stories from other newspapers.”
When asked to comment, Claar denied the existence of the Toyota Commission.
“Why don’t you write about all the brave men and women in the military who sacrificed their lives so Bolingbrook’s residents could elect me to an eighth term as mayor?”
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