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5 Tips for Next Gen Disaster Preparedness for Health Departments

Hana AlBarazi
environmental-health-flood-protection
Disaster response is top-of-mind for health departments across the country. To help agencies be prepared ahead of a disaster, we’ve compiled some important tips and tricks. 1. Track & report – When the pressure is on to gather resources and information to respond to a disaster, and when agencies like FEMA or the Army Corp of Engineers need your data, you don’t want to be combing through spreadsheets from multiple computers, doing data cleanup and filtering out irrelevant information. The best way to avoid this scramble is to have a data system that compiles all your health data across programs. If you already have a system of record,… Continue reading

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Smart City Policy Summit Roundup: The Advantages of Short-term Rental Regulation

David Maxwell
Last week, on a sweltering August day in Austin, Texas, nearly 200 participants gathered to discuss one of the hottest topics facing local governments today: short-term rentals and the opportunities and challenges they present. Hosted by the Smart City Policy Group, the summit brought together stakeholders across the spectrum of the short-term rental industry, from local government officials, vacation and tourism boards, online rental platform representatives, and owners/hosts of short-term rental properties. Accela was a sponsor of the event and I had the pleasure of participating in the summit as a subject matter expert on short-term rental registration and licensing. In opening remarks at the summit,… Continue reading

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Building Capacity to Leverage Reports

Darryl Booth
microsoft power bi
An example of Microsoft Power BI, one of the industry leading analytics tools for reporting. (Microsoft) Editor’s Note: This article was originally published by the National Environmental Health Association’s (NEHA) Journal of Environmental Health in its April 2019 issue that can be found here. A sure measure of software satisfaction is getting out more than you put in. The MyFitnessPal app on my phone is great. I tap in my meals, snacks, and work-outs. It’s a small chore. Maybe I should invest those slivers of time elsewhere? But I don’t. I keep inputting those meals because I get predictions and motivation when I look at the positive trends…. Continue reading

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Leadership in 2019: Why Cities Need to Rethink Digital Services

Gary Kovacs
Leadership in 2019: Why Cities Need to Rethink Digital Services

An Open Letter to Mayors and Local Leaders: Leading the Decisive Shift in Government Innovation

Editor’s note: The National League of Cities published this article originally on its CitiesSpeak blog in advance of its 2019 Congressional City Conference in Washington, D.C., from March 10-13. The original post can be found here. With changing technologies and higher constituent demands, cities and state leaders are trying to move faster to build more intimate and meaningful relationships with their constituents. There is pressure to deliver digital services more effectively as a result of online consumerism. Technological change is accelerating at an exponential rate due to industries built around innovation…. Continue reading

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Trailblaze the Uncharted Territory of Cannabis Regulation

Accela
cannabis
How often do you take a large black market, flip a switch and turn it into a highly regulated one? When Colorado legalized retail sales of cannabis in 2014, license applications poured into the City and County of Denver. While city officials had spent months preparing, they still faced the mammoth task of managing the demands of a novel regulatory program that came with unforeseen, real-time challenges and a high degree of outside scrutiny. Responding to those demands involved a coordinated effort across multiple city departments utilizing industry-leading technology to streamline application intake, back-office workflows, field inspections and community engagement. As cannabis continues to emerge from the shadows,… Continue reading

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How Digital Transformation Can Spur Economic Growth

Accela
economic development, permitting
Late in 2014, Boston Mayor Martin Walsh announced the launch of Boston 2030, a 15-year strategy to create 53,000 units of housing across demographics and neighborhoods, and effectively plan for anticipated growth at a scale the city has not seen for more than 50 years. Boston isn’t alone in anticipating growth. According to Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn, his city permitted a record $2 billion in development in 2014. Additionally, according to the U.S. Conference of Mayors 2015 Metro Jobs Forecast, all 363 metro areas in the U.S. will see future job growth. Meanwhile, the National Association of Counties (NACo) reports that job growth accelerated in 2014,… Continue reading

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Digital Transformation’s Impact on How We Govern the Future, Today

Heidi Lorenzen
Heidi Lorenzen
Governing the Future
Over the last decade, emerging technologies have ushered in the need for governments to approach accelerated change and challenge in new ways. The impact of increased urbanization and shifting citizen expectations, combined with the ways technology is reshaping cities, is creating a call to governments and city leaders to evolve their role and shift their mindset around how to effectively govern into the future — not a simple task. The demands of the new mindset are twofold: a curiosity to identify the opportunities and challenges that a technology-enabled future holds, and a creative approach that seeks the right mix of tools and partnerships so governments are empowered with technology to meet new demands.Whether an elected official,… Continue reading

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What Really Makes Cities Smart: Understanding the Citizen Experience

Heidi Lorenzen
Heidi Lorenzen
Editor’s Note: This is a guest post by Heidi Lorenzen, vice president of marketing for Accela that was originally posted in CitiesSpeak, the official blog of the National League of Cities. Cities are laboratories for democracy where residents can directly access their local elected leaders to make their concerns known. While federal regulation and legislation moves at a seemingly glacial pace, cities have to act nimbly and continuously evolve to maintain a well-functioning community. Cities all across the country are navigating emerging regulatory challenges that include ride sharing registration in New York City to e-scooters in San Francisco, to cannabis regulation in towns coast to coast…. Continue reading

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6 Accela Customers Win Route Fifty’s 2018 Navigator Awards

Accela

The Awards Spotlighted Individuals and Organizations that Delivered Transformative Services in 2018

The 2018 Navigator Awards were held on the first night of the National League of Cities 2018 City Summit. (Accela) Accela customers took home a sizable share of this year’s Route Fifty Navigator Awards, representing six out of the 10 winners.Coinciding with the first night of the National League of Cities City Summit, Route Fifty presented the awards at a special ceremony in the GRAMMY Museum in downtown Los Angeles. The event honored the Accela customers of California; Tennessee; Boston; New York City; Arlington, Texas; San Jose, California; and St. Louis, Missouri for their transformative efforts and initiatives in their communities…. Continue reading

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El Paso County Fights Food Poisoning with Data

Accela

The Colorado County Uses Accela for Environmental Health to Inform Residents About High Risk Restaurants and Spot Food Inspections Issues

(Alpha / Flickr) Whether it’s craft beer at Oskar Blues, rigatoni at Red Gravy or gluten-free sweets at Coquette’s Bistro and Bakery, the cooks in Colorado Springs have a dish for almost any visitor. Yet with roughly 23 million tourists visiting the mountain town each year, food inspectors have made safety a top priority by using smart city tools like data analytics and mobile technologies to monitor compliance.Sitting near famous outdoor sites like Pikes Peak and Garden of the Gods National Natural Landmark Park,… Continue reading

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