The staff at OC Public Works did it again! The OC Watersheds team, a division within OCPW’s Environmental Resources, was recently honored for its “Overwatering is Out” program, a water conservation effort that is linked throughout all of Orange County. The award in the category of Technology and E‐Government was bestowed by the Association of California Cities – Orange County (ACCOC) at its annual Golden Hub of Innovation Awards on June 25th. When it comes to water conservation, OCPW is helping shape a positive impact on residents’ behaviors in the community. Overwatering is Out is an effort to engage residents in every city across Orange County and aims to reduce pollution from residential water use by delivering rebates, event notices, and simple tips that homeowners could act on to protect the environment. To reach that goal, the program was designed as an automated system to learn about residents as individuals, tailor content to address their unique needs, and deliver the timely messages. Over 1,500 residents have actively followed the effort and over 50,000 messages have been delivered. So how does that help OCPW – and residents? Using these automated tools through Overwatering is Out enables OCPW to track online activity and deliver personalized content to residents, which in turn keeps residents updated on information that’s important to them. Information is customized for the public –Overwatering is Out delivers messages that residents want to read and when they want it. This has led to longer engagement, higher viewing/reading rates, and higher site click‐thru rates. Without automation, this level of personalization would be impossible, requiring thousands of labor‐hours. Knowing the level of interest among Overwatering is Out followers also helps OCPW identify “community champions” who are the most active in this important water conservation effort. Automated tools like the ones used by OCPW are nothing new. Private sector companies like Target and Amazon have been using such tools for years. Yet, OCPW is taking a leading role among public agencies to use these innovative tools to provide a higher level of customer service.
Environmental Resources Data Portal Wins 2015 NACo Achievement Award
The Environmental Monitoring Division's "Environmental Resources Data Portal" has been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). The national achievement award honors to innovative, effective county government programs that enhance services for residents. NACo recognized the Environmental Resources Data Portal in the category of Information Technology for the design and launch of a web-based data portal intended to provide County staff, other agencies, and the general public with improved access to data products and environmental information. The portal is a gateway to multiple interactive maps with spatially represented data enabling users the freedom to explore data sets and download data layers in a variety of different formats.
Founded in 1935, NACo represents the nation's 3,069 County governments in support of the pursuit of excellence in public service. Started in 1970, NACo's annual Achievement Award Program is designed to recognize innovative county government programs. Each nominee is judged on its own merits and not against other applications received.
Ten County of Orange programs were selected to receive a 2015 Achievement Award by the National Association of Counties. "We are honored to have been recognized by NACo and appreciate the opportunity to share innovative County programs that best demonstrate our efforts to provide efficient, quality services to the residents of Orange County," said Chairman Todd Spitzer, Orange County Board of Supervisors. "I thank all the employees for doing a great job and congratulate them on this well-deserved acknowledgement from NACo."
The awards will be presented at NACo's 2015 Annual Conference and Exposition July 10–13 in Mecklenburg County, N.C. Feel free to discover and share the data maps in the Environmental Resources Data Portal located at ocenvironmentaldata.giscloud.com using "ocstormwater" as both user name and password. Please use Google Chrome browser for best map performance.
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