Posted tagged ‘Bloomberg cuts redtape’

Bloomberg Seeks To Cut Red Tape

April 19, 2010

The phrase “red tape” comes from England where thick legal documents were bound or tied with red cloth tape. So when someone spoke of cutting through the red tape, they meant it in a very literal sense. While the paper work and bureaucratic procedures required by most governments is frustrating for everyone. Imagine what it must be like for non-profit agencies dependent on city funding to navigate their way through the bureaucracy of New York City.

According to a recent article in the New York Times life for non-profit organizations in New York City consists of:

  • Taking out loans due to the length of time it takes to obtain funding through the city. The city actually runs a loan program that provided $21 million in loans to cover agencies until the paper work is processed to provide city funding.
  • Assigning workers who do nothing but “submitting forms, resubmitting those forms, then submitting identical forms” to other agencies.
  • Most of the city contracting paperwork is still done by hand and sent through the mail or delivered by couriers. Some agencies with multiple contracts rent trucks to haul thousands of pages of documents to various city agencies.

To his credit Mayor Bloomberg is seeking to change all of the above horror stories by seeking to replace the hodgepodge of agencies dealing with competitive contracts with a centralized office, potentially saving nonprofit groups hundreds of millions of dollars a year in administrative expenses. As the Times article states “Under the new system, the number of documents required of nonprofits for a typical contract would drop to 3 from 15, and much of the paperwork could be filed electronically and stored in a central database called the Data Vault.”

While your local government may not be as large as New York City, you too could improve how funding for non-profit organizations are handled. Someone needs to focus on and draw attention to the crazy and duplicative rules and regulations that organizations must endure to obtain funds for important community services. Follow Bloomberg’s lead and bring the red tape cutting crusade to your community.