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Fremont Introduces New Paperless Council Agenda Process - New Technology to Provide Cost Savings, Efficiencies

September 14, 2011
Original Publication by City of Fremont
City of Fremont

The City of Fremont is pleased to announce its continued commitment to driving citizen engagement, transparency, and process efficiency by automating the City Council meeting agenda process. Through a competitive purchasing process, the City selected the IQM2 Software Suite, a hosted service for the full agenda management software and citizen portal distribution. The interface on the City’s website, www.fremont.gov, to view Council agendas, minutes, and webcasts will change beginning with the Oct. 4 City Council Agenda.

“We are continually looking at ways to more effectively reconnect with our citizens while using technology to drive efficiency. We are excited because we are accomplishing both of these objectives with this software,” said Mark Danaj, Assistant City Manager.

In addition to empowering our citizens with complete visibility into the legislative process, the agenda automation software enables the City to replace paper-based, time consuming, and redundant processes. The City produced 100 printed copies of the agenda for each City Council meeting with an average of 45 pages for approximately 175,500 pieces of paper in a year. The City estimates the current cost of the manual agenda process (including printing costs and labor hours) at roughly $59,000 per year. The one-time cost to implement the agenda automation system was $16,000 with on-going annual hosting and support costs of $16,224. In addition, the use of electronic tablets at the City Council meetings enables the City to go paperless and achieve more significant cost savings. The one-time cost to acquire the tablets for the Council, including warranty and essential accessories and software was approximately $4,516, and the on-going data plan cost will be $2,280 annually. Not only does this new automated process equate to significant annual savings for the City, over $40,000 annually; it is more efficient, and promotes easier access by the Community. It is also consistent with our “green” initiatives and is part of the Strategic Sustainability improvements.

“We urge our citizens and businesses to visit the City’s website, where they will be able to access City news and activities as well as stay connected to the issues that are scheduled for Council consideration. There is also an option to sign-up for e-notifications. It is a wonderful way to stay informed about what is going on in the City,” said Nadine Nader, Assistant to the City Manager/City Clerk.

“During the course of this evaluation, I had the pleasure of collaborating with a number of the stakeholders at the City of Fremont. Their commitment to using technology to drive efficiency and citizen engagement is truly refreshing. We are delighted to be working with them on this critical initiative” said IQM2’s COO Doug Eden.

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IQM2 is a market leader in furnishing end-to-end public meeting and Open Government software solutions through their award-winning Open Meeting Management System applications including MinuteTraq (agenda process improvement), MediaTraq (Live/On-Demand Video Streaming) and E-Boardroom (electronic voting).

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