Community Innovation Challenge Grant

The Town was awarded a $46,000 Community Innovation Challenge (CIC) Grant by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in 2012 to increase efficiency in the DPW's centralized maintenance efforts through the use of field technology, to encourage public participation in the maintenance of Town assets through the use of smart phone technology, and to educate the public through informative web sites on the processes and costs involved in managing town assets.  This web page is dedicated to informing interest parties of the ongoing efforts to meet the goals of the grant as well as to describe for other communities the Town of Hanover's progress in consolidating municipal maintenance services.

The development of the Hanover DPW's website was a direct result of this grant.  Public works personnel applied for the grant six months prior to the Town's transition to centralized maintenance to enhance the Town's efforts in delivering high quality operation and maintenance of all of the Town of Hanover's facilities and infrastructure as efficiently and transparently as possible.      

Through this grant we hoped to show the work that is completed each week, the work that is planned, and the cost of operation and maintenance of each building in an easy to read format..  The grant funded the expansion of the DPW's work order management system, the pushing of IT hardware into the field for greater efficiency, and the integration of the Town's facility and infrastructure work management systems with the DPW's financial management systems.  

YourGov Smart Phone Application

The YourGov smartphone application that we implemented in 2013 as part of the CIC grant  is an an innovative citizen request application that allows community members to conveniently report non-emergency issues and service requests using the web or a smartphone. Unfortunately the initial implementation did not meet our expectations due to technical issues on the DPW's servers that limited the application's availability. The second generation of the platform which we rolled out on April 1, 2014, is a hosted system that is much more reliable than the intitial installation.  We have reassigned administrative staff to handle YourGov requests with the hope of providing better servicing of requests and better feedback to residents who submit requests.  While this project is in relative infancy, we invite users to check this page for updates on how the app is progressing.  

Lessons Learned, Platform Updates, and Social Media

Through our work in building this website we have learned what it takes to build and maintain a website and have had some setbacks.  We are about to implement the second generation of our software platform and expect that this will allow us to provide better access to information for our staff and greater transparency for the public.  We are also working on changes to the format of our facility pages to provide longer financial history for the public.  In addition, we realized through our initial efforts that we needed to dedicate staff time to website updates in order to make the website timely.  

One lesson learned by this project has been that many residents of Hanover increasingly look to the internet as their primary source of information.  Social media services such as Twitter and Facebook are often the go to source for information for many individuals.  The information available from these sources can often be second hand and inaccurate.  The Town of Hanover recognizes this and has recently reallocated staff time to support interaction with our residents through such services in addition to delivering news through traditional media channels.  The What's Happening at the DPW link on the menu bar to the left is a direct result of this effort.  The link will bring up a page showing interesting activities of the department. Our goal is to change this page weekly to keep it interesting for users of this website.  The News, Notices, and Projects  page will continue to provide a longer view of activities of the department.

We invite you to watch this website as well as the Town's main website for further development of these activities.

Transparency in Local Government

One of the Hanover DPW's ongoing goals and a primary goal of the CIC grant was to educate the public on what they own,  the challenges of  operating and maintaining the Town of Hanover's infrastructure, and the cost of operating and maintaining the infrastructure.  Government and the people we serve have to make choices every day.  We believe that an informed citizenry will make better long-term choices about their community.  We have recently added pages for Stormwater and Drinking Water Quality, two large, expensive issues that impact the quality of life in the community.  We have also added a Budget and Capital Plan page where we intend to post detailed budget data, including long term history as well as a complete description of our equipment and long term capital needs.  Finally, we are working on a DPW Open Data Project page where we will make data available in for people to download and use as they see fit.  The work on these pages and these projects are on-going and we invite you to check back often to see our progress. 

Developments in Centralized Maintenance

This section is currently under development

Statistics on transparency, the use of technology, and the use of this website

This section is currently under development. 

Please visit the following link for specific  details on the Community Innovation Grant Program.   Grant Announcement