The Daily Northwestern

Evanston to consolidate Public Works and Utilities departments

Julia Jacobs, Summer Editor

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Evanston’s Public Works and Utilities Departments will merge into one agency by the end of the year, city manager Wally Bobkiewicz announced Friday.

Though there will be no employees from the public services union laid off following the department reorganization, changes are expected among the higher-ranked managers and supervisors, Bobkiewicz said. Public works director Suzette Robinson was “separated” from the city Friday, he said in an email to city staff.

Assistant city manager Marty Lyons, who led the study of a possible consolidation of the departments, will become interim public works director until the new agency debuts, Bobkiewicz said.

Bobkiewicz temporarily restructured city staff in May to study potential realignments of departments owing to uncertainty about the state’s 2016 budget. The city manager told The Daily in June that the only apparent options for reorganization to boost efficiency and save the city money were the Public Works and Utilities Departments.

Robinson — who departs from the city immediately — started at the city’s Public Works Department in 2006, rising to the director position in 2010. Robinson led an expansion of the city’s recycling program, supported projects that made Evanston a more pedestrian and bicycle-friendly town and bolstered youth employment efforts by providing jobs in the department, Bobkiewicz said.

Details on the reorganization will be presented to City Council at their Aug. 31 meeting.

Email: juliajacobs2018@u.northwestern.edu
Twitter: @juliarebeccaj

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