Poughkeepsie… Dutchess County Government has once again been ranked among the nation’s best in the Digital Counties Survey, for its use of technology to improve services and boost efficiencies to better serve residents. The annual survey, conducted by the Center for Digital Government (CDG) and the National Association of Counties (NACo), ranked Dutchess County 2nd in the nation, in the 250,000-499,999 population category, for its use of information and communications technology. Dutchess County has consistently ranked in the nation’s top ten for each of the past 14 years.
Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro said, “The continued recognition of the dedicated work of our County’s Office of Central and Information Services (OCIS), led by Commissioner Glenn Marchi, further demonstrates our efforts to create a more open and engaging platform for our residents to readily access information and communicate with county government. We will continue to build upon our existing infrastructure and innovative technology to make retrieving information and resources easier and more efficient.”
“Congratulations to Dutchess County Government for receiving this noteworthy and deserving recognition. The services and information Dutchess County OCIS provides to residents is paramount in a day and age where technology is rapidly evolving and we must find new and innovative ways to adapt to change. This award further demonstrates Dutchess County’s commitment to providing transparent, accessible and open communication tools and information to its residents and visitors,” said Dutchess County Legislator Alan Surman.
Below are some of the County’s initiatives highlighted in the various Digital Counties Survey categories:
Transparency, Open Data, Data Governance
- Dutchess County continues to enhance its presentation of budget information to the public, with content readily available offering a big picture of the County’s financial condition with budget video presentations, Budget-in-Brief documents, and detailed graphs and departmental line-item budgets.
- Dutchess Dashboard is a “one-stop information source” for the public to monitor the key economic and service indicators impacting Dutchess County Government’s programs and services, as well as its fiscal position.
- Streamlined and enhanced information to the public through the Enterprise Content Management system including direct access to County documents and data such as Legislative Resolutions, County Clerk Document, Ancient Documents, and Class Specifications/Job Descriptions Search features.
- Meetings of the Dutchess County Legislature are webcast live and the webcasts are then archived along with meeting agendas and resolutions, making it easy for residents to stay up to date and informed about legislative actions.
- The County has redesigned many of its web applications including the County employee intranet, Environmental Division Information Tracking System Project Review and Permit Status and municipal websites using a “responsive” design making these applications easier to use and to access on mobile devices.
- County employees, including Adult and Child Protective Service workers, public health nurses, and case managers, who engage with the public in the community, utilize iPads and tablets to streamline operations by performing assessments in the field. These mobile tools enable them to have key information readily available and complete necessary reporting with clients quickly and easily.
- Mobile messaging and field reporting allows public safety employees to remotely have a text conversation with the E-911 Communications Center or perform field reporting remotely from a law enforcement patrol vehicle.
- The County’s Aerial Access web application enables the public to view multiple years of aerial photography while also giving the user the ability to identify their location and start aerial views.
- The HELPLINE mobile app and TEXT to 911 are critical mobile applications available to provide residents in crisis and/or emergencies direct access to County service providers.
Social Media/Portal/Citizen Engagement
- Dutchess County Government is active on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to inform and engage residents.
- The County’s Dutchess Delivery service allows residents to subscribe to more than 60 broad-ranging topic areas. Updates are automatically distributed to subscribers via email or in some instances, text message. Some municipalities have incorporated a shared services offering of Dutchess Delivery including Beacon Delivery and East Fishkill Delivery.
Shared Services/Collaborative Initiatives
- Dutchess County Government has continuously worked to create shared services, consolidation and cost saving opportunities. OCIS has taken the lead on this effort, providing responsive website redesign and development, technical services such as personal computer PC/server support, network services, software development, consulting services, and IT assessments.
- OCIS plans and coordinates the annual Shared Services Summit bringing together close to 100 state, county and local officials to discuss and brainstorm shared services opportunities.
- OCIS has partnered with numerous local municipalities and government entities, including the City of Beacon, Town of East Fishkill, and the Arlington Fire District to redesign and host websites, as well as streamline information technology services, providing cost savings and greater efficiency in service delivery.
- Dutchess County Government is persistent in its efforts to confront cybersecurity threats and ensure continuity of operations in the event of an emergency. OCIS promotes security awareness training with alerts, best practices and tips on the County intranet and OCIS staff attend annual security awareness training.
- Security systems are utilized to log, block and detect botnets, malware, phishing, spyware and viruses.
OCIS Commissioner Glenn Marchi said, “We are fortunate to have such a talented and dedicated team at Dutchess County OCIS who work each and every day to develop and provide innovative technology and information services to our residents and County departments. As we look to overhaul the County’s website, we will strive to continue in our efforts to present information and County resources in a way that is user-friendly and easily accessible to the public. Additionally, we will advance our partnerships with our local municipalities to create new shared services and cost saving opportunities.”
“As technology continues to grow in all facets of our lives, county governments are adapting and innovating,” said NACo Executive Director Matthew Chase. “The Digital Counties Survey spotlights how counties deploy technology to enhance services and benefit residents while being responsible stewards of taxpayer resources.”
To learn more about the Digital Counties Survey, visit: http://www.govtech.com/cdg/