Brian Peteritas is a GOVERNING contributor.E-mail: email@example.com
It is often difficult in government for good ideas to make their way up the chain of command and be put into practice where they can save money, increase efficiency and improve services. To help streamline and incentivize the process, Arizona is reviving its employee suggestion program according to the The Republic. Signed into law earlier this spring, it establishes a five-member board appointed by the governor to hear any money-saving ideas proposed by any of the state's 39,000 employees. The panel will hear and evaluate ideas from individuals or teams of employees on a rolling basis and decide which ones merit implementation. If the idea is used then the employee(s) who proposed it will be paid 10 percent of the savings after execution costs. Ideas will only qualify if they are not a part of the employee's job description and produce results within a single fiscal year. Any compensation that is paid out will happen after the total savings are tallied at the end of the year the idea was implemented. A similar program has been in place in the city of Phoenix since 2003, saving the city $15.3 million and paying out more than $163,000 to employees.