What began as a project to give municipalities a common language for organizing their service delivery has now become part of a vision to align government services at all levels across the country.
The Municipal Reference Model, Version 2 Project now under development by MISA/ASIM Canada is envisioned to become a foundation for a pan-Canadian reference model that would enable all governments to describe and map their services in a coordinated way.
This could mean that companies that have expressed interest in helping to build the MRMv2 might find that the project has much broader scope.
MISA/ASIM Canada has invited private-sector participation in establishing a set of modelling tools and a Web-based service to enable municipalities to collaborate with each other and with other levels of government in describing and analyzing their programs and services. That would mean that services could be aligned among jurisdictions, something not possible today because municipalities do not use common terms.
In the fall of 2007, MISA/ASIM Canada and the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat made a joint proposal to the interjurisdictional Joint Councils to develop a pan-Canadian reference model to be called the Canadian Government Reference Model (CGRM).
The Joint Councils gave their approval at a meeting in Victoria in February to proceed with the CGRM project, for which $50,000 has been allocated. It is understood that the CGRM may be built on the infrastructure acquired through the MRMv2 Project, so the two projects are linked and some of the $50,000 may be used to further the MRMv2 Project.
MISA Ontario, which is managing the MRMv2 Project on behalf of MISA/ASIM Canada, invited the private sector last fall to submit proposals for implementing the project as a Web-based collaborative service.
Four proposals have been received: from IBM Canada, two consortia called Fuseforward and Swift Fox, and a training solution proposed by Nexient. These are being evaluated by the MRMv2 Project team and its Steering Committee, led by Roy Wiseman, CIO of the Region of Peel.
Ten Ontario municipalities are represented on the Steering Committee along with the cities of Edmonton and Saskatoon.
Meanwhile Wiseman has been appointed co-chair of the Services Mapping Subcommittee of the Joint Councils, together with Gary Doucet, chief architect of the federal Treasury Board. This committee is directing a work plan for development of the CGRM and has begun meetings to engage the provinces more actively in the CGRM work.
The tentative work-plan schedule calls for implementation of the MRMv2 service by the end of 2008, with initial implementation of the CGRM to follow early in 2009.