College Park's excellent city services have been a source of pride and deep appreciation for many years now. The dedicated men and women of the Department of Public Works and the Department of Public Services work around the clock to make sure our trash is picked up, our city streets are plowed, our parks and buildings are kept in top condition, round up stray animals, and enforce our city's laws. Despite our City's high level of service, residents find low staffing in some city departments concerning, and have experienced frustrating delays and incomplete information in areas where the city's responsibilities overlap with those of the county and/or the state.
As a member of city council, I will seek to support and enhance our excellent city services:
Creating a "single point of entry" for city services. This could be either a service hotline and/or a phone app (such as that pioneered by the City of Seattle) which would allow residents to avoid the run-around when they are trying to report an issue with the city by quickly routing the request to the correct city, county, or state agency for resolution. Crucially, reporting an issue would create a "trouble ticket" via a process similar to IT call centers. Tracking this ticket would permit residents to receive updates about the status and resolution of their request.
In-sourcing some permitting. Residents and business owners complain consistently about the slow timelines and bureaucratic red tape associated with going to Prince George's County for common permits. On the other hand, our city staff are widely appreciated by College Park residents for their customer service orientation, responsiveness, and can-do attitude. If re-elected, I will seek to build on this culture of customer service and seek to in-source some permitting functions to the City of College Park, so that residents no longer have to depend upon the long wait times and arbitrary treatment from Prince George's County.
Live monitored cameras in Old Town. Until 2020, public safety cameras in Old Town (and a few places in Midtown) were live-monitored by the University of Maryland Police. Unfortunately, council support waned due to a perception that any benefit from live monitoring principally helped one area of our city. If re-elected, I'm committed to finding a way forward to have those cameras monitored once again.