We’ve got high hopes for where we’re going with some new software modules that we’re slowly purchasing (it’s expensive) that will give us a lot more technological horsepower so that you’ll be able to pay your water bill or permit fees or even your taxes on-line — and with a credit card! Imagine that.
I know that’s not exactly state of the art technology but considering how little (both cash or IT staff) resources we have available to devote to this we’re actually working wonders. Years ago the City Clerk saw the writing on the wall and she got the City on the web train by scraping together enough cash to hire an outside firm to give us a functional web site where people can take care of basic City business. That got us in the game but it’s been hard to do much more without any in-house IT staff or IT budget. That being said, we are making progress.
I launched the City into the blogosphere with Kent360 three years ago and that’s turned out to be a great ride as we put a lot of information out there for people to keep them engaged in their community.
We’re proud of these initiatives but we’re still frustrated by how much more we could be doing if we knew how or had the cash to pay someone to do it for us. In the meantime, we’ll keep taking small baby steps towards our goal of being a ubiquitously on-line City.
One small step for Kent-kind was taken last week as we added a new on-line form — Life Safety Pre-Inspection Checklist. It’s not quantum mechanics but it should definitely be useful for those businesses that are preparing for their annual fire inspections. See for yourself.