You might remember me heading to Kansas City last June for the All-America City Awards. It was a real honor to be a part of the team from Rancho Cordova due to my involvement with Project 680. Anyway, the National Civic League interviewed me via Skype last week, so I wanted to share it with you in case you might be interested to hear some of what I think about local government and civic engagement. Enjoy.
Does the city you live in have an online system set up for residents to ask questions, report code violations or send in suggestions or complaints? Are you familiar with how to use it? Have you seen any results from using a system like this?
Yesterday I wrote about the life cycle of neighborhoods, and I’m convinced that one of the most important pieces of the puzzle to see a neighborhood enter a phase of “renewal” is grassroots activity among residents and a city encouraging these efforts. If there is poor communication between residents and City Hall, then that’s going to show up in many potential ways – unenforced codes, unkempt properties, lack of pride, loss of hope… Moreover, I sincerely believe there is a correlation between the level of civic engagement in a neighborhood and property values. Do you agree? Disagree?
Anyway, I thought it would be useful to make a brief video for my area to show others how to use the “My City Hall Online” system for the City of Rancho Cordova website. This system is also referred to as the “Comcate” system, and is a very useful tool for us residents. My take and experience is that the more we communicate with City Hall, the greater the chances are of obtaining the results we want to see.
I’d be very curious to hear your stories. Comments are welcome below.