Troy rolls out 311 application

Published 7:22 pm Monday, August 25, 2014

The City of Troy is officially rolling out a new 311 app to make it easier for Troy citizens to report issues.

“Anything they could call in to the city, they can submit for a service request with the app,” Janet Marshall said.

The app is free and available on both the Apple App Store and Android Marketplace. The app can even be used to take photos and submit them with a service request, according to Marshall. After registering and confirming an email address for verification, it is ready to use.

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“If you see overgrown weeds in your neighborhood and want someone to respond, you can take a photo and send it with the app.” Marshall said.

The 311 call service has been in operations since October 9, 2013. With the service, citizens of Troy can call to report issues such a power outages, potholes, litter and other issues dealing with the city departments. Residents can also use the service to ask questions, such as which district they live in and when their garbage is scheduled to be collected.

Mayor Jason Reeves said the goal behind the service was to make accessing city services and asking questions easier.

“We want them to get information as easily, quickly and painlessly as possible,” Reeves said. “If they want to call on their home phone, cell phone, access online or on the app, they can do that. Troy is a diverse, varied community and we want to provide an easy way to access information. If they aren’t comfortable getting information, we will have a hard time getting it to them.”

The new app has been in the works for six months, while the City worked out kinks with terminology used in the application.

“From a city standpoint, we think differently about an issue, “ Marshall said. “For example, what we call garbage, other people call trash.”

Officials worked to make the app service-oriented instead of department oriented, so that it would be easy for users to classify service requests.

Since its inception, the service has received an average of 29,000 calls a month and has initiated and completed at total of 4,500 service requests. There are three 311 phone operators that keep the line open from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. The service is also available during emergency situations, such as the ice storm last winter.

Twenty-four iPads have been dispersed to in-the-field responders throughout the city departments to help them respond quickly to service requests. Marshall said this has helped reduce down time.

“They can instantly get service,” Marshall said. “It cuts out middlemen and gets responders to the issue much quicker. You can submit a request 24 hours a day with the app.”

To use the service download the app or call 311 or (334)-566-0177.