Interfacing with the city

The city bureaucracy performs very important services for residents, but is often very difficult to navigate. Requests for help often result in being passed from clerk to clerk at various phone numbers; it’s difficult to track the status of a request over time, because very little is in writing and there is no clear reference number; and unless a citizen knows someone within the city administration, the entire process can often be too opaque. Council members often try to help, but the real authority resides in the Mayor and the staffers below she or he.

I propose that the city adopt a unified web-based customer service platform to track all requests from the citizenry. Each request should have a ticket number, and residents should be able to log in and view the status of their request as it moves through the bureaucracy.

These types of systems are very common in the cloud and are quite inexpensive to utilize. It’s a simple innovation that will make the city more effective.