Each Sunday we will feature a project going on within the city, happenings within a department or someone who works hard to provide services to the community. This week looks at the efforts and the city and her various departments' attempt to communicate with residents.
Letting residents know what's happening in the city -- whether its the latest parks program coming up or a heads up concerning an emergency situation -- is important. The more residents know, the more they can become engaged in their community.
In addition to this City of Portage Facebook page, did you know that several of the city's departments have their own independent Facebook page? Those pages focus on specific department-centric information for residents.
The Portage Police Department, Portage Fire Department, Portage Streets and Sanitation Department, Portage Department of Parks and Recreation, Portage Event Partnership (PEP) and City of Portage Storm Water Board - Field Forces all have their own Facebook pages. If you haven't visited and "liked" those pages, please do so.
The city's website at portagein.gov also offers a plethora of information for residents on a variety of topics. Find the city's code, calendar of meetings/events, department-specific information, forms, contact information, services and more on the website.
To improve communication with residents through the website, the site is currently undergoing a "renovation" of sorts to allow it to contain even more information and be more useful and interactive for residents. Look for the launch of the new and improved city website sometime this coming summer.
Mayor Sue Lynch launched Hyper Reach, a new "all-call" system last year to better communicate with residents. Residents may sign up for the system which offers notifications through telephone calls, emails or texts -- or a combination -- of city events and activities or emergency events.
Residents can still sign up for the Hyper Reach system by registering on hyper-reach.com/inportagesignup.html or by calling or texting 219-203-1861.
The city also continues to offer live streaming of most city meetings. If you want to know what's happening at the City Council, Board of Works, Redevelopment Commission, Planning Commission or a handful of other city meetings, you can watch them live via the city's Facebook page. The live streaming also allows residents to interact, make comments and ask questions, in real time through messaging. The meetings are also "rerun" on the city's Facebook page if you can't watch them live.
Local media continues to serve a role in communication with residents. The city provides press releases and information through local print, web-based and radio outlets to try to reach as many residents as possible.