- Posted On: July 22, 2014
What are the most common problems your city faces? Maybe these will sound familiar: weed abatement, yard maintenance, stray animals, vehicle registration stickers, parking for recreational vehicles, abandoned vehicles, commercial vehicle parking and building inspections. A code enforcement officer is required to keep these issues from getting out of control – not an easy task.
Most city employees will tell you that their first line of defense against blight is the code enforcement officer who has to face the public on a daily basis and outline what is wrong and what must be done to fix the problem. It’s often a thankless, but extremely important job. The problem that compounds issues for code inspection tasks is related to antiquated workflow processes. City and community communication suffers as well, mostly due to a lack of technology that could improve the situation.
As an example of how things can go from bad to better, take the city of Lake Elsinore, CA. Five code enforcement officers oversee a workload that affects the 55,000 residents of the city. Like most other cities in the nation, Lake Elsinore officials are tasked with managing, reporting, citation and removing of abandoned vehicles. To cover the cost of this responsibility, citizens are charged a $1 registration fee. The problem was in managing and tracking the code enforcement duties related to dealing with all the abandoned vehicles.
In order to receive funds from the county, the city needed a more effective means of tracking and reporting every activity related to abandoned vehicle tasks. In 2013, city officials began to search for a method that would assist them in doing this. What they needed was highly configurable software that also had reporting features and case management tools that would allow them to track multiple vehicles.
Officers needed a mobile solution that allowed them to spend more time in the field where they could generate new cases, send reports and keep citizens updated on cases. With 100 cases being created a month, the old process wasn’t keeping up and a solution needed to be implemented quickly.
What the city found was a solution through Comcate, a company that believes government can be run more efficiently. Our solutions not only empower communities, they also bring the citizens into the mix to take an active role in improving cities.
Our platform enabled Lake Elsinore code enforcement officers to easily process citation fees and fines. Officers are now able to easily keep track of foreclosed properties, and managers can track an officer’s every move in the field.
Part of the reason the solution has been such a great success is that Comcate took an active role in designing a program that would fit the specific needs of the community. Clients also enjoy the mobile app that citizens use to generate cases. GIS integration helps pinpoint the issues identified by citizens, as does the photos attached to reports. Citizens also enjoy alerts they receive when their case has entered the system and finds resolution. For more information, contact us today for your free demo.