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City Of Dallas Debuts New 311 App

Bud Gillett, CBS 11 News | CBSDFW.COM
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DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) - People who live or work in Dallas that have a complaint about potholes or high weeds have a new weapon in reporting those kinds of offenses. It’s a new Dallas 311 Application for smart phones.  See it, snap it, send it.  It’s the mantra at Dallas City Hall
now with a new 311 app.

“We know people are proud of their neighborhoods, and when they download this app they’re going to be demonstrating that,” Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings said as he announced the app’s formal roll out.

The application lets people who see graffiti, potholes or litter and the like, to snap a picture and file a complaint on the spot.  It’s free and users can report and track complaints anonymously.

It’s faster than phoning or reporting on a 311 website because it bypasses call operators and goes directly to the appropriate city agency.

CBS 11 News randomly chose one location and found a large pile of trash overflowing a local dumpster, just as an unhappy resident had reported using the new 311 app.

Yessenia Aranda says her husband made the 311 app contact.  “I’ve lived here for five years and I’m done with this.  I’m fed up,” she said of the trash.  Now her family is adding it to their 311 reporting arsenal.   “Very constantly I report these (trash locations) on my computer.  Now it’ll be more than convenient to stop, take a picture, and report this on the spot.”

While reporting time is shortened, follow-through can still be a challenge. Aranda says she’s complained before. In fact a city citation was delivered today.  But only to one of the businesses that shares the building.

App or no app, the endgame still finds the city sorting out who did what.

Mayor Rawlings is not worried.  “It’s going to be harder, but just because it’s hard doesn’t mean you lower the bar,” he said adding, “Management is going to be able to track that in a much clearer, more immediate fashion.”

The city receives more than 376,000 requests annually, 40,000 submitted online.

The mayor says the program will also help is “Grow South” initiative.  “Having roaming dogs out there and trash is not acceptable in any part of this neighborhood,” he said.

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