Chelsea, MA (August 30, 2011)- Non-emergency complaints can now be delivered with the click of a mouse thanks to a new service being offered by the City of Chelsea. This week, City Manager Jay Ash and members of the City Council announced that the City had entered into a contract with SeeClickFix to provide a place-based reporting platform that allows residents to document neighborhood concerns and needs, like potholes, graffiti, trash and overgrown vegetation.
"This is another great use of technology to help us connect with and better address the needs of residents," stated Council President Vega.
"We continue to look for ways of connecting government with the governed, and SeeClickFix offers a great tool to engage residents and others in helping government to be more responsive and efficient," added Manager Ash.
SeeClickFix allows citizens anywhere in the world to report and monitor non-emergency community issues ranging from potholes and planted trees to garbage and graffiti. Launched in 2008, it empowers citizens, community groups, media organizations, and governments to work together and improve their neighborhoods. Through mobile web, web, iPhone, Android, and Blackberry apps, the SeeClickFix platform is the most widely distributed citizen reporting tool in the country. SeeClickFix is pleased to be offering the service in Chelsea.
"With this announcement, we're honored to add Chelsea to our growing list of municipal partners in the commonwealth and across the nation," said Ben Berkowitz, SeeClickFix CEO. "Our decentralized platform will help connect the city's residents with each other and their government'strengthening the lines of communication and transforming quality of life for everyone along the way."
With the online reporting platform, individuals can report quality-of-life concerns through custom service request categories via SeeClickFix.com, Facebook, or a mobile application. Those reporting can simply click on one of the options to report a problem, and can also provide more details and even an image of their observation. Once someone submits an issue, the reporter and the City will receive email notifications. The City can then acknowledge the service request, route it to the proper department, and update the issue page once it has been resolved. Throughout the process, the reporter is kept notified of the progress the City is making to resolve the complaint.
"SeeClickFix is one way that we can improve our communication with the people we serve while also addressing issues in a timely fashion as they arise," said Councillor Leo Robinson.
"By allowing the public to email us issues with pictures, our DPW or ISD can quickly assess the priority of the issues. This will help us be better informed and quicker to respond," added Councillor Calvin Brown.
The partnership allows residents to not only report community issues, but also view, comment on, and vote to fix problems submitted by others. Citizens can even create their own "watch areas" to receive notifications about issues reported throughout the city or just in their neighborhood, enabling them to follow the progress of all service requests.
"This is another way we're empowering the public to help us identify issues and hold us accountable for our actions," suggested Councillor Brian Hatleberg. "It's exactly what a transparent government should be doing more of."
Over 40 percent of issues reported on SeeClickFix are ultimately resolved. Ash says the City will strive to do even better.
"Our department heads will prioritize the resolution of issues raised through SeeClickFix. Some will take longer to resolve, but all will get our attention," concluded Ash.