Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone today announced the support of U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer for the Suffolk311 system that will go live next month.
“Across New York I have seen how 311 has modernized constituent services. It’s why I secured federal funding for the Town of North Hempstead to get their system up and running,” said Senator Chuck Schumer. “As the first county in the state to establish a 311 call service, Suffolk is leading the way in streamlining government and making public resources more accessible to taxpayers. I thank Suffolk County Executive Bellone and the County Legislature for their support of this critical endeavor so that county government becomes more efficient and effective.”
311 was originally developed as a non-emergency alternative for police departments to reduce congestion on 911 call centers. Suffolk311 will improve public safety by reducing the burden on 911 county emergency call centers that receive tens of thousands of non-emergency calls each year. This will allow emergency call centers to be better positioned to respond to true emergencies.
U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer was instrumental in providing the seed money for the creation of the Town of North Hempstead 311 Call Center in 2005 through a $500,000 federal grant. The Senator was on hand to celebrate the Town’s millionth call into its 311 call center in 2013. The call center launched in 2005 and is credited for being the first of its kind for a suburban community on Long Island, which receives hundreds of thousands of calls annually on everything from potholes, building permits, to taxi rides for seniors.
Earlier this week, a bipartisan group of local government officials, business advocacy organizations and civic leaders across the state offered similar praise to implement Suffolk311 including:
- Michael Bloomberg, Former New York City Mayor
- Martin O’Malley, Former Governor and Mayor of Baltimore
- Michael Balboni, Former New York State Deputy Secretary for Public Safety
- Nassau County Comptroller Jack Schnirman
- Smithtown Town Supervisor Ed Wehrheim
- Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman
- New York City Councilman Justin Brannan
- State Senator Anna Kaplan
- State Senator Jim Gaughran
- Kevin Law, President and CEO of the Long Island Association
- Kyle Strober, Executive Director of Association for a Better Long Island
- Dr. Jim Malatras, President of the Rockefeller Institute of Government
The Suffolk311 system will improve residents’ interactions and overall experience with county government. In addition to connecting residents to the government that serves them, the 311 system is a premier management tool, which will help officials to better allocate resources and taxpayer dollars by capturing critical details on each call, question, or request, allowing the county to gather valuable insight into the issues communities across the county are facing in real-time.