Those who haven’t yet seen it should take a few minutes out of their day to visit www.davidcityne.com.
Simply typing in the URL will take users to a new, revamped, user-friendly page that is completely different than the previous outdated one that simply wasn’t fulfilling its job any longer.
Months ago, the David City City Council started the process of contracting a company to provide city officials with the new page – and updated technology – that would best allow them to interact with residents, and vice versa.
The new website, designed by Lincoln-based nonprofit Foundation for Educational Services (FES), was launched earlier this month and has been well-received, according to Deputy City Clerk Tami Comte, who along with City Clerk Joan Kovar and Account Clerk Lori Matchett, will manage the new platform, at least for the time being.
“We have heard a lot of really good feedback,” Comte said. “One of our planning commissioners called us the day after it went live and said, ‘wow, this is really cool!’ And we have heard a lot of other good things, too. So that was kind of fun.”
With council’s approval, the city purchased the site software for $3,450 upfront and will continue paying a lower yearly fee for maintenance and other site-related work, Compte said. That upfront fee also enabled city officials to offer a free smartphone application to residents that enables them to easily access anything they would need off of the site in a format tailor-made for their handheld devices.
Similar setups designed by FES can be seen in Nebraska cities like Beatrice, Neligh, Crete and Wahoo.
The new site enables users – on a computer or cellphone – to access the city’s Facebook page, allows city administrators to provide up-to-date alerts and notices and provides ample space on the home screen for local photos, videos and other information selling David City as a great place to live, work and raise a family.
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While the site was being developed, Comte said she went around town taking pictures of the David City Park, pool and other local staples that officials wanted to incorporate in one way or another on the page.
“It’s just a great way to promote the city,” Comte said of the site’s new look. “… The old one had pretty much just stopped working and we couldn’t get anything uploaded to it. It was just time to move on … And with some of those pictures were just wanting to convey what we have and show David City as being a great place to live.
The site allows for utility and other bills to be paid, shows local job openings, and soon, will give users the means of wading through old council meeting minutes at least 10 years back in a much easier fashion. For Ward 1 Councilman Skip Trowbridge, this was one of his main goals with getting a new site launched.
“We are a litigious society today and people are always saying they are going to sue you for one thing or another,” Trowbridge said. “This will provide a paper trail from the city to the public. It will show people what your council did for the past 10 years. And if you want to prove somebody right or wrong, then you can go back through those minutes and prove them right or wrong. And I really think that’s what transparency is all about.”
For residents to get fully involved, Comte encourages those who have the ability to download the app to visit their Android or Apple app store and searching ‘City of David City.’
“We have the app now and it’s free for anyone to download,” Comte said. “I think it’s just a great tool for people to have and you can literally just download it."
Sam Pimper is the news editor of The Banner-Press. Reach him via email at email@example.com.