"Pierce County Takes National Awards for Parks, Juror, Community, and Confirm/Strike Programs"

“Pierce County has won a number of National Association of Counties Achievement Awards.The awards recognize the efforts of counties to promote responsible, responsive and effective government. Award winners will be recognized July 16 during the 65th annual NACo Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina. The county’s winning entries are:- Sponsorship Executive Summary: People, Parks, Programs, Partnerships.Parks and Recreation staff contracted with SponsorVision, a local marketing company, to create a business strategy that offers partnership opportunities between the private sector and the department. The new sponsorship program is aimed at providing more effective partnership initiatives and generating dollars to maintain or increase service levels in spite of budget reductions.Other departments have expressed interest in using the parks and recreation sponsorship model for their purposes.- Reducing Juror Mileage Costs with GIS Data.Superior Court replaced its jury management software as part of Y2K preparations. Jurors receive a daily fee and mileage reimbursement equal to their round-trip from home to the courthouse.The former software calculated mileage based on the most distant point in the juror’s zip code. While this system overstated mileage reimbursement, it required no staff data entry. Superior Court Administration worked with Information Services/GIS to develop a more accurate mileage reimbursement process and reduce costs accordingly.It was important the new system calculate mileage reimbursement without staff intervention, because entering roundtrip mileage for 275 people every two weeks would require large amounts of staff time.The new software added functionality and a user-friendly interface. Court employees operate the application with a few clicks of the mouse.The result has been more successful than expected. During the first six months of use, mileage costs went down 24 percent. Annual savings are projected at $82,000.Juror mileage-reimbursement complaints dropped substantially.- Upper Nisqually Valley Community Plan.Pierce County Planning and Land Services worked with a citizen advisory board from the communities of Ashford and Elbe to form the plan. The plan balances the need for improved economic opportunities with the desire of citizens to maintain their natural heritage and environment. Economic opportunities are increased by directing growth into three community centers, increasing housing choices by introducing an employee housing program, and coordinating public infrastructure projects with the National Park Service, the US Forest Service, and local business owners.The community’s natural heritage and environment are preserved by using design standards that emphasize the turn-of-the-century building architecture that is characteristic of the area, reducing population densities in volcanic hazard areas, and pursuing opportunities to preserve open space.- Internet Confirm/Strike Process.A new Internet application developed by Pierce County Information Services in conjunction with Pierce County Superior Court Administration allows authorized attorneys to confirm or strike civil proceedings on commissioners’ calendars through a secured interface.Once an attorney is approved by the court and given a secure Personal Identification Number, he or she may confirm a proceeding at any time up to two days before the court or strike the proceeding up to midnight the day before the court date. This allows attorneys to do business with the court at their convenience on a 24-hour-a-day, seven-day-a-week schedule, eliminating court business-hour limitations.Attorneys have the convenience of doing this in accordance with their own schedules. They can get immediate confirmation and verification that their confirm or strike request has been processed and accepted. They also can be confident they are dealing with a secure web site.County Webify WinnersA team from Pierce County Information Services has been announced winner of the Webify Your HP3K Contest sponsored by MB Foster, a Canadian company that provides client server technology for the HP3000.The contest required a demonstration of excellence in developing a web-based application using company technology and was open to an international audience through the Internet.The Pierce County team, led by Raymond Odem and including Linda Daisey, Doug Becker and Charlene Sugahara, submitted the PALS Online Permit Information site as its entry.We felt that this site demonstrated the ease with which MB Foster’s technology allowed access to and from the HP3000 and enhanced the website by making information available in an efficient manner, Odem said.As grand prizewinner, Pierce County receives $10,000.00 in prizes, including a $5,000 cash award, and a trophy. Odem will be attending the HPWorld 2000 Conference in Philadelphia in September and will have an opportunity to demonstrate the application.”