360 Review with Matt Monedero, City of Garland, TX

Posted on February 2, 2015

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Who doesn’t love a good ol’ fashioned performance review? ELGL loves them so much that we’re embarking on a “360 Review of Local Government.” We’re going to evaluate every single inch of the local government arena by talking to ourselves (a.k.a: other local government professionals), tech companies, journalists, professors, and anyone else who hasn’t blocked our email address.

Matt Monedero (LinkedIn and Twitter) has a served as  Budget Analyst with the City of Garland, TX for the past two years. Previously, Matt has served as Budget & Management in Analyst in El Paso, TX, and Management Intern in Overland Park, KS. He received his Bachelors in Political Science & History from the University of North Texas and his MPA from University of Kansas.




What I’m Listening toChandelier by Sia (at full volume while lip syncing at my desk)

What I’m ReadingThe Blind Assassin by Margaret Atwood

What I’m WatchingPortlandia Season 4

What I’m DoingMaking a kale salad…well wishes to my sphincter

What I’m Proud of: Actually eating the ENTIRE kale salad without gagging


What I’m Thinking: I’ll never kale again

What I’m Afraid of: A buffet with nothing but kale

What I Want to Know From YouWhat are your thoughts on kale?




Best part of working in the local government arena. Most frustrating?

Being the first to know what’s going in the city. The amount of time it takes to get infrastructure-related projects completed.

Describe the current state of local government. Grade?

images (1)C+/B-: That may seem a bit harsh, but there are many challenges on the foray that we haven’t tackled head on (i.e. street funding on a continual basis, Other Post-Employment Benefits, Secession Plans, Same-Sex Benefits).

It will be interesting to see how the millenials deal with these topics as they step up to management roles.

Give us three areas in which local government is succeeding.

  • Transparency
  • Work-Life Balance
  • Doing More with Less

Give us three areas in which local government needs improvement.

  • Wellness Initiativesimages (2)
  • Community Input (specifically during the Budget Process)
  • Innovation in the IT sector (FYI-having a Facebook page for your city doesn’t count as “innovation”)

For local government, was there any good that came from the Great Recession?

I think many public servants, especially Council members and Management, were greatly humbled during the Great Recession and, in the process, learned what a “bare bones budget” looked like. Now that the economy is slowly on the upswing, anything beyond the bare minimum seems to be a luxury that should not be taken for granted.

Evaluate whether local government is prepared for the ongoing wave of retirements.

We’re not as prepared as we may think, but we’re also not completely unprepared. 70 percent of Garland’s workforce is over the age of 60, which is both frightening (few secession plans are in place) and exciting (lots of room for internal advancement). Nevertheless, we’ll get it done at the end of the day.

Evaluate local government’s willingness to embrace new technologies.

I think most local governments are very willing to embrace new technologies. The questions lies in whether there is funding to support those new technologies.

Wave a magic wand – what three wishes would you grant local government?download (2)

  • New streets for all! 
  • Locked in Healthcare rates forever! 
  • Fully-funded OPEB Fund!

Give a brief evaluation of your state government and the Federal government.

Two words: Republican Majority (and all that that implies).

What question(s) should we have asked?

How awesome is Ted Cruz?

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