I am from a great state in the middle part of the United States, Wisconsin. It is a cold place. It snows a lot. I mean, a lot. The city services to clear roads is incredible. And when it is slow, even a little bit, the political repercussions are immediate. You have to keep the roads clear.
I moved to Seattle. They are not so familiar with snow here . Last year we had a good sized storm. Paralyzed the city. Shut down schools. Affected public safety. And, arguably, cost the mayor his job.
We just got hit with another good sized snow storm. The coverage has been good. And so far the services have held up. But as the Times reports, this is a big one and is shutting down schools and services. So, it is a good time to remind folks that all politics is local and if we cant deliver services that our citizens expect, we can expect to be thrown out of office.
We are kicking off a great GovCamp in Portugal today and fully expect that the incredible speakers and elected officials will covers incredible topics like the economy and the environment, but I challenge them all to keep a close eye on their streets as they pull their way out of this recession.
And in case folks don’t see the connection between snow and open government, see the multiple instances of local councils tweeting their snow plow locations and routes, SMS solutions for weather warnings like the one we stood up in Jamaica to warn of hurricanes and multiple 311 systems including the City of Miami and San Francisco that now allow citizens to track their complaints directly. These just touch the surface, what else is out there?
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