Los Alamos County rests high in the mountains of New Mexico and has two town sites of Los Alamos and White Rock. Both town sites are separated by Federal and tribal lands and though Los Alamos desired to place fiber which would connect the two town sites for many years, no placement had occurred. Additionally, Los Alamos County only had one fiber pathway off the mountain and when that pathway was cut, Los Alamos residents, schools, governmental agencies and businesses were left without connectivity until repairs could be made.
The situation in Los Alamos is not unique to the region. To look at these and other issues, Los Alamos County provided funding in 2008 to start a program called the Regional Economic Development Initiative (REDI). This program was charged with determining the greatest barriers to economic development in Northern New Mexico. As the tribal, local government and public utility entities came together, lack of telecommunications infrastructure was identified as the greatest challenge faced. A plan developed to create an open network which would:
The REDI Net middle mile fiber network was designed to meet these needs and bring connectivity to Community Anchor Institutions within Northern New Mexico communities. In particular, high speed broadband was identified as a need to meet educational, health care, energy, public safety and economic development needs. When the possibility of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding was announced, the REDI partners came together and applied for funding to create a regional middle mile fiber network designed to bring connectivity to anchor institutions within Northern New Mexico communities.
In August 2010, the partners secured grant funding and worked together to build a fiber optic middle-mile network across multiple tribal and local government boundaries. The network began provisional operations in the fall of 2012 and began providing full services in February 2013. This network is a successful example of multi-jurisdictional partnership across tribal, county and municipal government lines.
The recent influx of high technology start-up firms to Santa Monica’s Silicon Beach has created a demand for a highly-skilled workforce. To help local youth prepare to compete for these well-paid careers, the City of Santa Monica sought to stimulate interest in technology careers and training among local high school graduates by creating the Youth Tech Program. The Program is a partnership of the City, school district and local tech companies to give local teens a dose of working in the real world.
Youth Tech is a six week technology training program available to recent high school graduates and select juniors. Students form teams and develop a project that has a community focus. They are trained by Information Systems Department staff and representatives from local technology firms. The program is conducted at Coloft, a startup incubator in Santa Monica.
Recognizing the success of the program, Coloft now offers its own training program. Firms working in the shared space have expressed interest in offering internships to Youth Tech Alumni and the City plans to offer a limited number of internships to alumni who will help mentor program participants in future years.
Blackberry phones have been the City of Scottsdale standard for over ten years. The Blackberry Enterprise Server platform has provided the City with a secure platform for mobile phone access to employee calendars, email, and contacts. However, consumer-based smartphones have taken over market share and offer a multitude of features and functionality desired by Government workers.
To make these changes, not only was a new City-based smartphone platform required including a new Mobile Device Management (MDM) software platform, but the processes, policies, and support structure also needed to be changed for how IT conducted the support of this entire system.
Apple iPhones were adopted as the new City smartphone standard and the Good MDM platform was selected as the software platform located on-premise to enable secure access to the City’s email, calendar, contacts, and Intranet. City policies and Administrative Regulations are in frequent review as the City’s requirements and the consumerization of IT dynamically change providing us more opportunities to use technology to continue to improve our ability to support City staff and the citizens.
The challenge: How to address the issues of an aging printer fleet in times of cost reduction – yet provide new printing technologies (such as wireless and secure print) to all employees? The answer: Managed Print Services with a commitment to optimization and real hard dollar savings across the City!
In 2007, Miami-Dade County departments were faced with a huge challenge of replacing aging and out-of-warranty physical servers with a diminishing County budget. As a solution, Miami-Dade County’s Information Technology Department (ITD) used VMware server virtualization to design a Miami-Dade County Private Cloud. It was developed and implemented in a multi-phased approach with the collaboration and partnership of the ITD Storage Area Network (SAN) and ITD Network units. It used technology already in place as an enterprise solution across the County and resulted in hardware and software cost savings for Miami-Dade County departments.
The complete implementation expanded over multiple Miami-Dade County network zones, Miami-Dade County’s Metronet, Secure Access Zone (SAZ) and Demilitarized Zone (DMZ), and four physical locations, two of which are located inside Hurricane Category 5 resistant buildings. Miami-Dade County’s Private Cloud has been able to reduce the physical footprint of processing hardware at each major County data center by sharing physical resources.
The Aviation Shared Use Environment enables public airlines to operate their proprietary reservation systems on county owned and maintained equipment over a county provided network. The airline reservation systems require no modifications to operate in the Shared Use Environment. No periodic certifications of the applications are required and updates to the reservation systems can be applied at any time. Airlines are no longer responsible for maintaining the agent facing equipment.
100% of the airlines at Sacramento International Airport (SMF) use this system in their native environment. The network at SMF uses the Cisco MPLS dynamic VLAN switching methodology which allows for multiple airlines to use the same equipment at different times of the day. The login process dynamically switches the equipment into the appropriate airline VLAN.
In a major step toward improving public safety radio communications that help police officers, fire fighters and other municipal workers conduct public safety operations, two well-established Valley of the Sun radio systems have committed to unite, ensuring that public safety personnel continue to have robust radio communications readily available.
Encompassing over 26 members, the Topaz Regional Wireless Cooperative (TRWC), and Regional Wireless Cooperative (RWC), with close coordination with the Department of Homeland Security, State of Arizona and Maricopa County, have adopted a formal resolution to work together to share costs, enhance interoperability, and conduct joint strategic planning to broadly support their radio users throughout the Phoenix metropolitan region.
A workforce is crucial to any city or county, but an efficient workforce is even more important. With a large portion of budget dollars allocated to labor, it’s an expense that can’t be wasted. But with a lack of visibility into true labor costs, how can this be measured? Well, Denver had this same question and knew in order to save money and be more productive it would have to automate their workforce management processes including time and attendance, absence management, and scheduling.
As a result, it was able to see benefits quickly after implementation. This includes improvements in productivity, better visibility into labor costs such as overtime, and a wider adherence to federal and state labor laws with a centralized database. Not to mention, a $5.2 million return on investment.
In 2011, the City of Raleigh began installing a 125-mile fiber network throughout the city. This fiber network will not only meet the City of Raleigh’s needs, but also provide access for partner organizations to connect their facilities, connect to the Internet through our partners, and connect with each other.
The City of Raleigh, five other municipalities, four Gig.U universities and local chambers of commerce have formed North Carolina Next Generation Network. This collaborative is seeking proposals for disruptive network solutions and business models that prepare the region for the future while serving the needs of today and use existing public investments in government fiber and broadband assets to provide maximum benefit to the public.
This initiative exemplifies the business value of bringing together city and university CIOs, City Attorneys, City Managers and regional leaders to develop an approach to promote economic development, education, innovation, and community enrichment. The initiative has included a technological and economic assessment of the current circumstance that includes a mapping of existing network capabilities, economic and market assets, and a gap analysis to prioritize where to invest. Investment is planned with an eye toward stimulating and sustaining innovation, market development, and improvements in effectiveness of current lines of business, and connecting underserved populations.
The City of Raleigh has a long history of open, collaborative government by engaging with citizens to provide a high level of customer service. In February 2012, the Raleigh City Council unanimously adopted an Open Source Resolution. This was the first of many steps designed to make it easier to get information and interact with city government. Raleigh is committed to an open source strategy that highlights transparency, collaboration, and improved access to local government information and data.
Since the passing of the resolution, City staff has engaged with citizen groups, youth development programs, entrepreneurs, and businesses to create an open data roadmap. The open data roadmap was created as a living document under the guiding principles of availability and access, reuse and redistribution, and universal participation. The open data roadmap moves the City forward in creating a set of open data policies. These policies will be developed in an open and transparent way.
On March 15, 2013, Raleigh published a beta version of its open data catalog. The open data catalog allows access to city data sets in open and standard ways for technical and non-technical users.
The City of Raleigh is a partner in the open government community and strives to become a worldwide model for an open source city. Through the Open Raleigh initiative, the City strives to develop opportunities for economic development, commerce, increased investment, and civic engagement. This open initiative will be an ongoing citizen partnership offering more resources and data over time.
In July 2011, the City of Charlotte Office of Chief Information Officer (OCIO) began strategy design for enterprise telephony. The City of Charlotte telephony system is composed of multiple PBXs and key systems, voice mail systems, business lines and various phone models. Employee survey indicated only 72% of responders identifying current access to both a desk and mobile phone indicated needing access to both.
To maximize the City’s investment in telephony, the OCIO identified solutions to fulfill existing needs while meeting expectations from City management to move toward more centralized and consolidated systems while focusing on the future. This included designing a solution to drive cost savings, productivity improvements and long-term operational efficiencies. The initiative included determining best solutions and support strategies for delivery of multi-channel or unified communications for City end-users.
Staff from the City of Charlotte’s Finance, Shared Services, Charlotte Mecklenburg Utilities Department (CMUD) and CharMeck 311 departments collaborated to implement a new and improved comprehensive Outbound Courtesy Call Program (OCCP) for delinquent utility accounts.
The mission of the program is to reduce delinquent payments, provide alternative payment options, reduce service disconnections and decrease dispatched resources while improving overall customer service. The new program replaced an outdated dialer, and leveraged existing IVR technology to create a more robust, flexible process to inform citizens of their account status, provide options for payment, speak with a representative and provide actionable data to continually improve the process.
Data collected through 2012 demonstrates a positive impact. Significantly more accounts are notified and easier payments options are available. Delinquent service orders performed by CMUD in 2012 decreased by 22% or 15K less than in 2011. Securing a payment before the account is shut off eliminates this costly activity. Additionally, since the customers have the ability to connect directly to Western Union SpeedPay this eliminates using CharMeck 311 manpower to process a payment. Payment arrangement activity increased nearly 10%, positively preventing resources from being dispatched. This team actively participates and communicates with a singular goal in mind, to enhance the citizen experience and drive further program effectiveness.
As part of the regular process of accident reporting, the Houston Police Department is mandated to send a copy of any accident reports above $1000.00 in damage to the Texas Department of Transportation. This new electronic submission process has substituted the paper copies and mailing operations that were in use by the department saving in excess of 200,000 sheets of paper, and the printer supplies needed for such operation.
In response to County employee requests for enhanced mobile computing services support, and in an effort to be more responsive and accessible to County employees, the Department of Technology Services (DTS) instituted the Mobile IT Service Desk program. Under the Mobile IT Service Desk program, staff from the County’s DTS IT Service Desk makes themselves available to County employees on-site at various County facilities throughout the year.
Examples of services provided during each support session include: connecting a mobile device to the County’s e-mail system; connecting to the County’s wireless network and Virtual Private Network (VPN); password protecting a mobile device; and various other services.
Saving the County more than $1.5 million annually, the conversion of all phones to Voice Over Internet
Protocol (VoIP) eliminates aging legacy phone system infrastructure and dedicated voice network
Sacramento County’s strategic decision to converge Voice and Data networks was based on a Cost Benefit Analysis that revealed return on investment within the first three years of implementation. The Board of Supervisors approved a recommendation by the Chief Information Officer to adopt Cisco VoIP as a countywide standard and directed the Department of Technology (DTech) to lead a project to convert approximately 15,000 phones to VoIP and decommission the aging legacy phone system.
To expedite the implementation of the new VoIP system, the County Executive approved a funding plan that allowed departments to borrow the funding necessary to complete the project and pay it back through the cost savings generated by the conversion project.
This very complex project affects 184 County locations with about 15,000 phones. It includes the assessment and upgrade of the data network to ensure redundant connections are in place to each location and quality of service (QoS) is implemented across the County’s wide area network to provide 99.99% reliability. To date, 11,700 County phones have been converted to VoIP. 22 of the County’s 28 call centers and hundreds of auto attendant and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) applications have been successfully converted to Cisco’s Unified Contact Center Enterprise and Unity voice mail systems.
Cisco Emergency Responder has also been implemented to provide an enhanced 911 (E911) functionality.
The City of Altamonte Springs has recently completed an inventory of all City streetlights. The Streetlight Inventory included the location of each streetlight pole, along with the pole ID, type of pole, number of lamps, and type of lamp fixture. The project was conducted with a decimeter GPS device equipped with ArcPad software, and a menu system designed to streamline user input. Photos of the pole, pole id, and lamp fixtures were taken with the GPS’ integrated camera and linked to the Pole. The data collected will be used to ensure that the electric utility billing reflects the correct number and type of street lights.
The County Wide Construction Coordination system (CWCC) allows road and utility agencies in Hamilton County, Ohio, to communicate, collaborate and coordinate construction projects within a shared, integrated framework. The system, developed by the Cincinnati Area GIS (CAGIS), functions across multi-jurisdictional and multi-departmental boundaries to identify opportunities to coordinate development activities. The CWCC exemplifies the use of geospatial technologies to integrate business systems and provide a common platform for collaboration and coordination, leading to cost savings and significant process improvements within participating agencies and improved service to communities by minimizing disruption. In the near future the system will also be made available to all right-of-way management agencies in the county’s 48 jurisdictions through a phased expansion.
The system is unique in that it provides a single, shared system for agencies to coordinate projects throughout their entire lifecycles, from concept planning through permitting and construction. The projects in the system range from concepts/studies to funded capital improvements from various planning and design sections of the participating agencies, routine maintenance and repair projects, emergency works as well as permits issuance on all. CWCC is both a daily-operation business application as well as a long-term planning and collaboration tool.
Downtown Raleigh boasts numerous sustainability features that have garnered the City widespread recognition. The City attracts national conferences and convention focused on sustainability, technology and smart grid. Raleigh was featured in an international report because of its electric vehicle infrastructure, developed in preparation for the national roll out of electric vehicles, and was the first east coast city to host an Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) conference.
Raleigh has become a national model for Big Belly solar trash compactors based on the overwhelming success and savings realized from the installation of 38 units throughout the downtown area. Major corporations such as Red Hat are relocating to downtown Raleigh because of opportunities for economic development and partnerships. The City’s partnership with Cree, Incorporated to install light emitting diodes fixtures (LEDs) in a downtown Raleigh parking deck garnered Raleigh the title of “First LED City in the World.”
Raleigh residents and visitors curious about the successful efforts made to make Raleigh “green” can take an approximately two-mile, one-hour, self-guided walking tour of Downtown Raleigh using their mobile smart phone as a guide. The City developed the Downtown Raleigh Sustainability Walking Tour Google map spotlighting 28 sustainability concepts such as protecting the natural environment, employing local labor and local materials, repurposed architecture and construction, access to health and nutrition, the use of greenways and open spaces, and renewable energy. The map includes information, photos and video. The tour can be also easily accessed on any smart phone using a QR (quick response) code.
Houston Plat Tracker was created by the Planning & Development Department, City of Houston technical staff. Through the Plat Tracker, the Planning and Development Department and other agencies regulate land development in Houston and the extraterritorial jurisdiction and review, investigate and promote land regulation policies for the changing demands to Houston’s growth and quality of life. Development plats applications are reviewed by the Houston Planning Commission every two weeks.
This in-house developed, web-based system is a multi-faceted complex system, for which the GIS pieces add specific solutions. The Plat Tracker includes GIS solutions that improve the plat application and review process, which is all made possible by requiring a computer aided design (CAD) standard file. First, a GIS Plat Verification service was created to allow the applicant to load a CAD file to verify placement in the parcel fabric before submittal. Second, a CAD to GIS automated process allows for streamlined CAD to GIS conversion which was not possible before. Processing the CAD files into GIS makes proposed land development viewable by citizens quicker and more easily than ever before via GIS online applications. It allows automation of spatial intersection of other GIS data, which reduces human error and quickens the plat application and review process.
The new definitive source for online mapping for the City of Philadelphia brings together City department mapping in one location. Discovering and using City data could not be easier. Phila.gov/map features advanced search capabilities allowing the public and City government users to search by address or district, such as, zipcodes, council districts, police districts, fire districts, school catchments, etc. Access to www.phila.gov/map is available on all devices including smartphones, tablets and desktops without the need to download data or an application.
The City of Kansas City, Missouri maintains a fleet of over 3000 vehicles that travel the City’s 317 square miles to provide service to its citizens. Services are provided by multiple departments and include everything from public safety, animal control, street maintenance, water services, and solid waste pick-up. Supervision of trucks and staff as well as efficiency of service can be difficult to manage. The City has installed and implemented a fleet-wide GPS tracking and routing system. The City’s Bulky Item trash pickup program has experienced significant improvements in productivity and customer service since implementation of the system.
Maintaining the accuracy and relevance of an enterprise GIS geodatabase for over 300 users can be a daunting task for any GIS team. The data contained in that geodatabase must be solid and useful to the end user, or there is little point to the enterprise. The City of Fort Worth IT Solutions Department took on the task of automating data checks of our critical basemap GIS layers and of all of the data contained in our SDE geodatabase.
All municipalities encounter budgetary and staffing limitations, so we needed to find a way to increase our efficiency by making targeted corrections to data and avoid reviewing datasets in their entirety. The enterprise GIS data auditing project was designed to analyze the designated basemap feature classes for errors in geometry and attributes, and to generate regularly scheduled reports of errors that were found. This has allowed our team to proactively correct GIS data errors and provide a better product to the end users.
The Housing and Economic Development Department (HED) at the City of Fort Worth wanted a mapping site with enhanced features and ease of use. The main focus of the site was to modernize their Employment Incentives Report tool. This tool allows companies to enter and map employee addresses to qualify for various tax incentives.
City staff also needed a way to create and print GIS maps in a non-technical environment. The IT Solutions GIS staff set out to re-develop the existing external economic incentive mapping site, and to create a new internal mapping site for city employees. The internal mapping application was devised as a simplified GIS tool for HED employees, so they would no longer need to use a Desktop ArcGIS license. Ultimately this project helped the public with an easier interface to apply for economic incentives, helped City HED staff accomplish their work tasks with the aid of GIS maps, and saved money in reduced GIS licensing demand.
The City of Fort Worth’s Transportation Public Works, Storm Water Management Division (SWMD), bills property owners a utility fee based on impervious cover. All commercial properties are reviewed using aerial photography and the fee is calculated using GIS based on the square footage of impervious cover. Every year annual estimates were generated but these estimates were not easily defendable. In response, an internal review of the data was conducted and a new process was developed using GIS. The result was an additional $282,000 in annual revenue and a process that is repeatable and offers accountability.
The Montgomery County, Maryland, Department of Technology Services – Geographic Information Systems (DTS-GIS) developed and published a new and innovative Cloud based on-line tool that allows the County’s Department of Transportation (DOT) to collaborate with two organizations outside the County to research and identify potential bikeshare station locations in Montgomery County.
When the North Kingstown Fire Department’s ageing radio communications system was in need of replacement the department turned to the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program for help. After two years of applying to the program DHS responded with an award of $577,631 to replace this obsolete equipment.
After several months of research and going through a formal bid process the North Kingstown Fire Department awarded the upgrade project to Motorola Solutions. The new system design included the replacement of the department’s communication equipment with state of the art Project 25 compliant 800 MHz radios that are capable of operating on the Rhode Island Statewide Communications Network. Two major improvements provided by this project include the installation of vehicle repeaters to increase the coverage of firefighters radios while operating on a scene and the use of new Motorola Dual Band APX mobile radios that operate in two different bands, which allows for redundancy and interoperability with surrounding agencies.
The department was also able to replace its radio dispatch console with a new IP based system that allows for a new level of flexibility and interoperability. Since the implementation of this new system firefighters have seen a noticeable increase in radio coverage throughout town and have been utilizing multiple talk groups including a secure talk group that had not been available to them in the past.
Police agencies across southeast Michigan have been exploring ways to better analyze crime trends and strategically deploy critical police resources. The challenge is in dealing with large volumes of data that are difficult to convert into actionable information to focus on crime priorities and geographic areas of responsibility.
Several agencies were independently exploring dashboard technology solutions that are user-friendly, geocentric and empower staff to easily analyze data that traditionally was trapped in the “system.” Canton, Southfield, Pittsfield, Ann Arbor and the Washtenaw County Sheriff had all identified independent funding and grant awards to purchase a dashboard solution. As members of the CLEMIS consortium, they approached the CLEMIS Executive Board to discuss collaboration.
The result: A dashboard pilot project is now actively underway to deploy a turnkey dashboard solution implemented by The Omega Group in partnership with CLEMIS and member agencies. Upon completion of the pilot project in December, all participating CLEMIS agencies (nearly 85) will seamlessly be able to analyze near real-time crime data in exciting new ways across the political boundaries criminals typically like to ignore.
Major League Baseball had selected the City of Kansas City, Missouri to host the 2012 All-star game and related supporting events over a three day period in June, 2012. With heightened security a given for this event, and 2012 being an election year, concerns were at a very high level for fans from all statures.
Because of the disparate locations of these events, the City was tasked to provide logistical support to help facilitate visibility into these events. Video surveillance was requested throughout all venues, with many Not City owned, and dispersed across the city. Also, many diverse groups and supporting organizations were tasked with coordinating the interoperability of not only City provided resources but also the resources of the diverse supporting groups.
By leveraging current resources and incorporating new systems, the all-star game and events were able to be staged successfully, garnering comments of approval from MLB.
The Transitional Response Vehicle (TRV) and Mid-Level Care Program addresses the needs for non-emergency medical services by using cost-cutting measures while improving patient service. A Mesa firefighter/paramedic along with a nurse practitioner from a hospital respond to low-level 911 calls in a TRV, which frees-up firefighters and equipment for more critical, emergency incidents and costs are significantly lower.
The APD Digital Vehicular Video system provided the City of Austin Police Department (APD) with digital video/audio documentation of police interactions with the public by recording all traffic stops, police activities and other public encounters. The results provide transparency for the public by providing an unbiased account of events. A project team of cross-functional staff, from the Police and technical specialties was assemble to implement an in-vehicle digital recording system for 550 marked patrol cars and 75 motorcycles with automatic triggers so that the officer would not need to remember to turn on the video/audio, but could focus on the unfolding event.
From a survey of other law enforcement agencies, APD’s requirements go beyond current state of the art. For example, many of the agencies did not record and upload as much total digital video data as APD expected from its automatic trigger requirements. Many of these police agencies did not retain the video to align with State record retention guidelines, which can range in Texas from as few three years for arrests to as long as ten years for a DWI. In addition, in many jurisdictions, police officers take home vehicles while in the City of Austin a vehicle could be in use nearly 24 hours a day. Coupled with the video quality requirements, the number of vehicles in use simultaneously uploading data and the volume of data being uploaded, APD’s needs were orders of magnitude greater than other agencies.
Police departments face a daunting challenge in providing front-line personnel, investigators, and other key stakeholders with real-time data related to crime trends, person, vehicle, and address history, and other historical information that is crucial to active investigations and day-to-day operations.
Firebird is a mobile GIS mapping application that integrates with emergency 911 response dispatch software. Upon an incoming 911 dispatch, Firebird captures the location information and automatically zooms to the incident on the navigational computer located in the fire truck. The simple design and big buttons on the display make it easy to use in a moving vehicle. Quick digital display of map and location data gives firefighters the information they need to get to an incident as fast as possible.
En route to the location, fire vehicles are able to coordinate based on digital mapping of hydrant location, flow information and water service availability. Base map data including property lines, buildings, streets and aerial photography show the lay of the land. This information is particularly significant for mutual aid situations where neighboring fire department responders may not be familiar with an incident location. For many locations, additional information is presented such as hazardous materials, building hazards, building vacancy, emergency plans and site layouts/photos.
In 2007, the City desired to enhance its response to Police employment application and personnel tracking. The City invested in a contractor-developed system to streamline the Police Personnel Records department processes.
As the years went on, significant issues were found with the contractor developed system causing numerous frustrations that added inefficiencies into the department’s daily operations. In looking at the market, many commercial enterprise systems were available but they roughly cost $500,000, with ongoing annual maintenance costs of roughly $50,000. These solutions had more features than was needed, focused on an entire organization, and would require significant integration into existing systems.
Using our own knowledge of the Police Employment Process and the maintenance of Police Personnel Records, a cross-divisional team used development tools and techniques to build a system that enabled authorized users to import online employment applications, track employment testing and progress, and modify personnel records and work assignments. In addition, another system was developed to allow authorized users to quickly record, view, and search polygraph testing results. Finally, the all the existing Fire personnel records were imported and integrated into this new Public Safety Employment Tracking system.
This system costs a fraction of commercial systems; it follows and automates the processes of the department; its expandable; flexible, and completely within the control of the City of Scottsdale. The solution requires no upfront software purchasing fees, requires no fixed yearly maintenance fees, and it provides for a reduction in staff hours working on the same processes.
The East Valley Gang and Criminal Information Fusion Center (EVGCI Fusion Center) objective is to utilize a technology driven information sharing environment to effectively address regional crime issues. This includes using the EVGCI Fusion Center as a formalized communication point between its partnering agencies. Another objective is to utilize COPLINK as a technology tool to share crime information. Additional objectives to support this involved developing formal and informal relationships with multiple regional agencies to effectively communicate crime information.
The Mesa Fire and Medical Department worked with four neighboring communities to develop a contractual agreement with Southwest Ambulance creating an exclusive regional emergency ambulance transportation system to serve Mesa, Gilbert, Queen Creek and the Apache Junction Fire District. The Regional Emergency Transportation Services (RETS) contract is the first such agreement of its kind in Arizona.
The Sedgwick County Jail houses 1,354 inmates daily with an average stay of 19.6 days. Inmate movement is constant and a difficult task for the 315 Sheriff Detention staff to safely track and maintain under their old paper & vendor-provided system.
In a partnership with the County’s technical division, the Sheriff’s Office created a state of the art Adult Detention Administration Management system (ADAM) that easily tracks each inmate from a single computer screen, eliminating paper and mistakes common in the previous system. The County saves $70,000 in annual software maintenance costs as the County owns and maintains ADAM for the Sheriff’s Office.
In 2009, the Charlotte Fire Department embarked on an initiative that would keep the department progressive, rein in some of the disparate applications utilizing GIS, and create a common operating picture that would serve both the Charlotte Fire Department and the larger geography of the Charlotte Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI).
Over the course of the next two years these objectives were met. Then in February 2011, the Democratic National Convention’s location was announced to take place in Charlotte, NC. Everything we had accomplished in GIS was ramped up considerably to meet these new challenges. The use of a common operating picture took on a greater meaning as we shifted our focus towards handling information access and security for large event support.
The Office of Emergency Management (OEM), in its ongoing effort to assist the citizens of Fort Worth, partnered with DeafLink, Inc. to enhance its service to sensory disabled citizens (Deaf, Blind, hard of hearing or Deaf/Blind) with accessible emergency information and alerts.
The partnership is twofold. First, DeafLink’s Accessible Hazard Alert System- Individual Notification (AHAS-IN) and AHAS service, provides OEM with the 24/7/365 monitoring of Warn-2 (threat to life and property) alerts and warnings issued by the National Weather Service and monitoring of NIXLE alerts and advisories for events affecting the City of Fort Worth. DeafLink then produces and delivers, in broadcast quality format, an accessible version of the alert in American Sign Language video, English voice and English text to subscribers.
Fort Worth AHAS subscribers in an area affected by an emergency or disaster will be able to receive an alert message that could include information about the emergency and what actions to take. Second, working along with the city’s IT Solutions staff, DeafLink created a web portal for citizens to register as free subscribers to receive the alerts, which are accessible using smartphones, video capable PDAs, computers, tablets and Braille devices. Registrants are kept in a database, which is sent to OEM on a regular basis so that OEM staff can monitor and report subscriptions. DeafLink also created a web portal for authorized OEM staff to create adhoc alerts to be sent to subscribers as needed.
During an external audit of National Incident Management System (NIMS) training records the City was challenged to locate certifications in a timely fashion due to the files being stored within varying physical file systems by department.
The goal of the NIMS Training Compliance application was to provide employees the ability to upload their certificates to a system that would store them electronically and make them available for retrieval by the employee or Office of Emergency Management (OEM) when needed. In addition, reporting and search functionality provides the ability to validate training completion and identify training needs.
The Sacramento Regional Radio Communications System (SRRCS) is a regional public safety and public service radio system that was designed to provide participating agencies located in the Sacramento region a high quality interoperable radio system.
SRRCS supports the daily operation of more than 100 member agencies. The primary agencies have more than 14,000 radios in operation and sponsor an additional 1,400 radios with other local entities for mutual aid coordination covering more than 1,000 square miles of the Sacramento region.
SRRCS is owned and operated by Sacramento County under the direction of the County’s Chief Information Officer (CIO). The CIO manages the system with the advice from the Systems Management Group (SMG) and the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). The TAC is a forum where issues are discussed and consensus is established on the daily operation of the system. The SMG is the policy making body of SRRCS. Each Primary Participant is a member. Policy is discussed and approved for recommendation to the CIO. Decisions are made by consensus and a vote of the membership is required if the SMG cannot reach consensus.
Altamonte Springs FL (A) Time Manager – Citywide Time Entry Application
The Time manager project is a web-based application, which was developed entirely in-house to improve the city’s payroll process and completely eliminate human latency. The project was built using Linux, PHP and MySQL. The application allowed the city to streamline the payroll process and improve the business procedures that were currently being used in the city. The Time Manager application helped cut payroll processing time by two-thirds.
Johnson County KS (C) My Resource Connection – Collaborating for Success
The Human Service programs of Johnson County, KS, are actively engaged in a novel data sharing initiative that fosters collaborative case management, better understanding of human/social services provided by community organizations, and, most importantly, greater likelihood of client success.
My Resource Connection (MyRC), a web application developed by Johnson County staff, is the means by which the sharing of data takes place. MyRC allows a case manager to obtain information about other County services a particular client is receiving, contact information of other professionals serving that client, information about other individuals residing in the client’s home, and potential services from community-based organizations that might be of benefit to the client.
User surveys and anecdotes from case managers reveal that MyRC has improved caseworker efficiency and contributed toward improved outcomes for individuals and families.
Mesa AZ (C) Mobile Manager and InsideVIEW
Managing Mobile workers means seeking solutions that fit both business and employee needs, not just seeking to lock all employees into a technology model that fits the technology offering. Mesa needed the ability to potentially provide information and applications to all 4000 mobile employees in a cost-effective secure manner AND also provide more in-depth capabilities for our super mobile users and Managers. The result is a strategy and toolset that we call Mobile Manager and InsideVIEW.
Austin TX (D) Speak Up, Austin! (SpeakUpAustin.org)
The rapidly growing city of Austin is a very “wired” community—the vast majority of residents have regular, reliable access to online technology and utilize it daily. While the City of Austin makes regular and robust use of an array of “in-person” community engagement tools, including workshops, “on the street” surveys, and televised town hall meetings, an online home for community engagement would more directly find Austinites where they already are and capitalize on great ideas from a wider array of citizens.
SpeakUpAustin.org is a one-of-a-kind engagement hub, providing space for crowdsourced ideas, surveys, discussions, and alternatives analysis, all in an easy-to-use interface that has attracted thousands of users across the entire city and beyond.
Montgomery County MD (D) openMontgomery
The Montgomery County, Maryland Department of Technology Services (DTS), in close partnership with the County Executive’s Office (CEX), the Office of Public Information (OPI), and the County Council (CCL) recently launched the openMontgomery initiative to make County Government even more transparent, responsive, accessible and accountable to its residents and constituents.
openMontgomery is the County’s umbrella Open and Digital Government initiative that is comprised of four pillar programs:
Santa Monica CA (A) Local Voter Information: SMVote.org
A popular City election website, SMVote.org, used outdated technology, required a high level of human interaction to maintain, did not meet City accessibility standards, and did not work well on mobile devices.
A new site was built using modern technologies and responsive web design techniques. The result is a fast loading site that adapts itself to desktop computers, tablet computers, and smartphones. In addition, many functions are now automated, dramatically reducing human error.
The end product is a one-stop-shop for all matters pertaining to Santa Monica’s municipal election process, including information pertaining to candidates and ballot measures, links to find polling stations, and previous election results. This content includes a large number of video candidate interviews on various topics. These videos are especially popular immediately prior to an election as voters seek information about the candidates.
Mobile use of the site rose dramatically in the November 2012 election with 23% of page views coming via mobile devices.
Philadelphia PA (D) Philly 311 Mobile App
The City of Philadelphia has a far-wielding vision involving the integration of technology, citizen engagement, and government innovation to create a higher quality of life and world class customer service for the residents of Philadelphia. Philly311 is central to realizing several of Mayor Nutter’s five strategic initiatives including the City becoming one of the safest cities in America and making the local government work more efficiently and effectively, with integrity and responsiveness.
To fulfill this vision, Philly311 in conjunction with an innovative CRM software company PublicStuff, has developed a digital communication strategy that enables the City to provide improved customer service in a more efficient and cost effective manner as well as provide better access to key data about service requests received from Philadelphia residents. One of the key elements of the communication strategy was the launch of the Philly 311 Mobile Application. The Philly 311 app addressed changing demographics in citizens’ use of technology and the need find a way to better allow the city’s 21% of non-English speaking residents to communicate with City staff to help build a better community.
The app helps the City government to turn civic inquiries into tangible community improvements by connecting people directly to their city representatives from their computer, mobile phone or tablet. While improving citizen engagement and collaboration, this digital communications solution transacts service requests at a savings of at least 50 percent.
Sacramento County CA (D) Sacramento County: County Food Inspections Mobile App
Sacramento County has been nationally acclaimed for its green, yellow and red food inspection placard system that lets diners see whether or not a restaurant has passed its County food inspection on a sign on the front window. Now, through technology, Sacramento County is making consumer protection mobile.
The Sacramento County Environmental Management Department (EMD) and the Department of Technology (DTech) combined the ingredients of technology and restaurant inspection to provide a first-of-its-kind mobile website service. Specially designed for mobile devices, this new food inspection website lets the public easily learn about a food facility’s compliance; maps and facility lists provide the full inspection report that can be viewed on smartphones.
San Francisco CA (D) License and Permit Tool
Throughout its various departments, the City and County of San Francisco issues more than 90 types of business licenses and permits. However, entrepreneurs and small businesses often have a difficult time navigating the city’s complex requirements. In his efforts to improve economic growth and job creation in San Francisco, Mayor Lee helped San Francisco’s business community gain clarity and ease by engaging in a high-tech public-private partnership using License123, a private-label solution from California Internet company, Docstoc.
License123 acts as a do-it-yourself tool allowing users to instantly learn which business licenses and permits they need at local, state and federal levels – providing them detailed information, fees, instructions, and application forms. San Francisco opted to pay an annual license fee to make License123 – packaged as the San Francisco License and Permit Tool – available to its residents.
Although the site was launched only two months ago, San Francisco has received positive feedback from local entrepreneurs and the License and Permit Tool has become a resource for case managers at the San Francisco’s Office of Small Business when advising small business owners.
Aspen CO (A) Aspen Energy Assurance Plan
The City of Aspen is vulnerable to several types of natural disasters, including wildfires, blizzards and mudslides. While the City’s current Emergency Response Plan addresses some aspects of electricity service continuation, revisions were needed to create a strong Energy Assurance Plan.
Aspen Electric serves more than 2,800 total electric customers and has the responsibility to provide these customers, with reliable, efficient electricity. By creating and implementing an Energy Assurance Plan and providing Smart Grid technology training for staff, Aspen will become better prepared to deal with emergencies and outages, critical load customers will be better served and emergency response services such as the Aspen-Pitkin Communications Center will be better informed.
Bellevue WA (B) Containing an Emerging Environmental Threat – A smartphone mapping solution
In 2012, the City of Bellevue’s Information Technology (IT) Department delivered an innovative mobile mapping solution to Utilities Staff in response to an environmental threat posed to the City by the spread of New Zealand Mud Snails. This freshwater invasive species, while first detected in King County in 2009, became a threat to Bellevue’s aquatic ecosystem in 2012 when detected in one of the City’s tributaries (Kelsey Creek).
These mud snails posed a serious ecological problem for the City as they were hard to detect and track, highly invasive and easily transportable to other areas via people, pets, and equipment. As a result, there was an urgent need for the organization to respond with an effective process to track and contain the spread of this species.
The City’s Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Team in the IT Department (ITD) collaborated with Utilities Staff to deploy a simple but effective mobile mapping solution allowing field staff to record the location of the species and track and report their infestation levels. The mobile solution became a tool to quickly build a repository of mud snail observations in less than three months, whereas previously no data existed! The solution was also used effectively to educate field staff and the citizens of Bellevue on specific decontamination protocols. Today, the City is collaborating with other regional agencies and the State to share this solution regionally and contain this threat in the Puget Sound region.
Mesa AZ (C) Living Green
Living Green is a public education program to that provides the basic environmental, economic and social concepts of sustainability. The goal is to help residents gain the knowledge to be critical thinkers and to see their role in building a sustainable community.
Living Green is a program with Community Based Social Marketing concepts to encourage the adoption of sustainable practices, by pointing out savings and benefits to the consumer and the environment, and by modeling the behaviors by sharing city practices and programs.
Raleigh NC (C) BigBelly Solar Smart Grid for Waste & Recycling
BigBelly Solar uses technological innovation to transform the way organizations tackle public space waste and recycling, saving time, fuel and money while reducing their carbon footprint. The BigBelly Solar smart grid system (www.bigbellysolar.com) is dramatically reducing the City of Raleigh’s costs and environmental impacts for waste collection in busy downtown public areas and parks.
These smart self-contained units are a visible reminder of the City’s first widespread public recycling program. The 45 dual stations, with a recycling side and waste-only side, use solar photovoltaic panels to remove air volume of wasted space by compacting the waste and also to send a wireless signal to service specialists when a pickup is required.
Raleigh NC (C) City of Raleigh Police Vehicle Propane Hybrid Conversion
The City of Raleigh Office of Sustainability partnered with the Police Department to convert 20 Ford Crown Victoria patrol cars to propane hybrids. The technology used for the conversions allows the cars to run primarily on propane, reducing carbon emissions, and making the cars more efficient in major emergencies or disasters.
As an alternative fuel, propane has many benefits relative to gasoline, including: lower fuel costs and longer maintenance intervals; improved performance of the cars; reduced emissions resulting in a 20% reduction of greenhouse gases (GHG); and it is 90% domestically produced, which increases energy independence.
Onsite infrastructure allows convenient refueling that encourages use of propane over gasoline. The tank and pumping unit were installed by Alliance Gas, the propane provider. A FuelMaster Fuel Management System was installed to automate control and accountability of fuel. This technology allows fuel usage and savings to be tracked and ensures the more efficient propane is being used as the primary fuel.
City of Raleigh Vehicle Fleet Services employees were trained during this project, making the City Shop one of only a few in the nation certified to perform installation and maintenance of this technology.
Department of Energy grant funds from Triangle Clean Cities Coalition Blue Skies Grant and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant were used to fund this project.
Charlotte NC (D) Charlotte Green Tour
The City of Charlotte, North Carolina created the Charlotte Green Tour to convey the story of environmental sustainability investments in Charlotte-Mecklenburg. The Charlotte Green Tour, based on GIS technology, presents the environmental story within the context of a map as “themes” based on six categories:
The Green Tour implementation includes both a mobile tour that generates a walking route for use in Uptown Charlotte and a desktop computer story map version. The application detects the type of device from which the link is accessed and presents either the desktop or mobile version. A special “Green Star” theme highlights environmentally-friendly features along Tryon Street, Charlotte’s main central corridor, Visitors and residents taking the Green Star tour can visit sites such as LEED-certified buildings, electric vehicle charging stations, and recycling locations. The City of Charlotte collaborated with Mecklenburg County on content development for the environmental features.
Mesa AZ (C) Energy Efficiency Savings Fund
The City of Mesa Energy Efficiency Savings Fund (EESF) is a fund that uses documented energy savings from energy efficiency projects and leveraged funds from utility rebates to fund additional energy efficiency projects within Mesa. Documented monetary savings from energy efficiency improvements made to city owned buildings and facilities are deposited into a restricted account that is used for additional energy efficiency projects.
Mesa AZ (C) Solar Dusk to Dawn
The Solar Dusk to Dawn project leases solar dusk to dawn lighting to customers, rather than requiring a connection to local electric distribution lines for dusk to dawn lighting. Solar panels connected to the lights collect solar energy during the day are used to power the lights at night. The project reduces carbon emissions associated with grid electricity and takes advantage of the abundant solar resources of the region. The lights, poles and all other components are owned by the City of Mesa and leased to the customer for a term of 10 years, after which renewal is offered.
Kansas City MO (C) Enterprise Sustainability Platform – Facilities Management
Sustainability is a hot topic of this century and city governments have embraced this concept, but how do we accurately measure, monitor and verify our efforts?
The City of Kansas City Missouri (KCMO) answered these questions by partnering with service providers to create a single platform that leverages various technologies. Through a comprehensive energy conservation project, KCMO developed and implemented an Enterprise Sustainability Platform that has substantially changed the way the City operates its facilities. This platform provides KCMO’s Facility Managers the information they need to know, on a real time basis, allowing them to make critical decisions in a timely manner.
Using this new technology has improved occupant comfort, extended the lifecycle of building equipment, reduced energy consumption and controlled utility expenses. The use of the platform has also lowered the cost of space and increased revenues from space that is leased to outside organizations.
With this new technology the KCMO facility management (FM) division is able to accurately measure, monitor, and verify the full spectrum of facility management functions as well as sustainability efforts. Additionally, the FM division is now better able to communicate the triple bottom line success to the organization and to the citizens of Kansas City MO.
Raleigh NC (C) City of Raleigh Electric Vehicle Infrastructure
In 2009, Rocky Mountain Institute selected the City of Raleigh as one of three cities nationwide, and the only city on the east coast, to participate in the Project Get Ready initiative designed to help prepare for the national roll-out of plug-in and electric vehicles (PEVs) and the accompanying new PEV technology. Since then, Raleigh has served as a test lab, addressing and solving challenges that may have stalled the adoption of the emerging electric vehicle transportation. Raleigh’s efforts included developing the City’s fleet, developing the technology-based infrastructure for electric vehicle charging stations and operational expertise, along with removing and reducing barriers to electric vehicle adoption.
The result of Raleigh’s efforts is the successful installation of 30 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations; 18 public charging stations and 12 fleet charging stations. The public EV infrastructure is designed to allow consumers to “top off” the EV battery, not provide full charging – which is typically done at home. The City also worked with Progress Energy to install the area’s first solar powered EV charging station. The most recent project in our infrastructure effort is the installation of inductive, or wireless, charging stations in partnership with Evatran.
Raleigh uses a software system, Periscope, to monitor the use of the EV charging stations. Periscope monitors the Level 2 electric vehicle charging stations/charging points and measures daily, weekly and monthly totals of delivered kilowatt hours; CO2 offset; number of charges; number of online charging stations; and average charge time.