Today I signed a procurement document that will impact every constituent of the agency for the next decade, and most of them will never ever know it. This document was the final step in a long process to changing how GeoStor will exist in the future. Now comes the hard work of platform, interface, and data migration. We held these GeoStor concepts as major cornerstones for the new version:
- Responsive Design
- Content Management
It is bold and ambitious. GeoStor has been the same since 2006 and it is past time for a makeover. I expect when we roll the whole thing out it will fall into the age old adage; “You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all of the people all of the time.” But that activity was Bureaucratic, perfunctory. I was pleased but not fulfilled.
I will tell you what really fulfilled me today. Earlier this week a constituent in a County had corresponded with our office about a recurring problem we hear, “all the time,” her physical address had been rejected by another government agency, a property insurance company and an online seller. She wondered, “If all these entities claim they can’t find me, then will 911 service be able to find me when I really need it?”
Staff did a bit of research and concluded, the authenticated local data, supported the constituent’s claim and her physical address was legitimate and had been assigned. Unfortunately, corporate USA is too reliant on too many commercial products that are rooted in data sourced from the Postal Service. Corporate USA doesn’t have time to deal with roughly 3,000 counties in the US who, mostly, could supply them with authentic data. Thankfully, I do with 75 of them. We’ve had a decade long relationship with the 911 Coordinator in this County. I knew exactly who to dial. She confirmed the physical address on County letterhead in less than 15 minutes and I was then able to forward it to our colleague who I know is authorized to correct the Postal Service record. [By the way, the constituent receives mail at a Post Office BOX back in town, which is unrelated to her Physical Address. Her Physical Address is assigned by the 911 who might send a law officer or a fire truck to the address. ]
Dealing with this one single address took longer than the signature process on the procurement for GeoStor but it was far more fulfilling. We helped one person know that in the future her Physical Address can be served by both the fire truck and Corporate USA.
It is called GIS Coordination. It is all about location. It is what we do for individual constituents and it means more in the right way.