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The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 provides over $1.9 trillion in additional federal assistance for COVID-19 relief and response efforts. 

For state and local governments, there are several provisions built in including $350 billion in direct aid for recovery initiatives such as housing assistance, small business credits, provision of government services, water and sewer infrastructure improvements and to support impacted industries like tourism. An additional $10 billion is earmarked for Coronavirus Capital Projects to “...carry out critical capital projects directly enabling work, education and health monitoring including remote options, in response to the public health emergency with respect to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19)”.

How Spatial Data Logic Can Help

Spatial Data Logic offers reliable and innovative solutions to help local governments modernize while tackling the lingering challenges of the pandemic. Our software includes a variety of tools that increase operational efficiency, help disseminate information to the public and offer municipal services online to keep your staff and community members safe. 

  • Remote Access – As the need for remote access grows, SDL Hosting enables your staff to work efficiently from any location. Our hosting services eliminate the need to have and maintain in-house servers by moving the SDL Desktop into our Google Cloud environment. 
  • Municipal Websites –With many municipal buildings closed to the public, websites play a critical role in disseminating timely town and COVID-19 information. Municipal websites can also be used to offer online services to the public, providing a simple way to maintain cash flow and keep critical processes in motion. Spatial Data Logic’s sites deliver a unique web experience where visitors can access personalized information and take actions such as applying for permits, requesting inspections, filing complaints and more.  
  • Citizen Services – By enabling citizen platforms, you can provide the public with a safe and convenient way to engage online. SDL offers 3 different platforms where residents, businesses and community members can access public information, submit requests and check the status of their requests online. 
  • SDL Forms – With SDL’s form builder, municipalities can create simple, streamlined forms to collect information and respond to the public health emergency. These digital forms are integrated with SDL’s citizen platforms and municipal software meaning they can be completed online and will automatically feed back into your town’s software for processing. 
  • Remote Inspections – Our remote inspection tool offers a safe and friction-free way for departments to complete video inspections from a web-browser. The inspector has full control over the process including verbal directives, visual cues and the ability to document their findings with time-stamped photos and notes. The inspector also can access plans, applications, checklists, statutes, and other helpful documentation during the inspection. 

Additional Considerations

  • $350 Billion in aid will be distributed across states, cities, tribal governments, and U.S. territories. The federal government has specific formulas for both state and local governments that will determine the amounts allocated.
  • $10 Billion will be allocated to states, cities, tribal governments, and U.S. territories for critical “Coronavirus Capital Projects”. Each state will receive a minimum of $100 million. The remaining funds will be allocated by the Secretary based on factors such as population, rural representation, and household income.
  • Before utilizing these resources it is important to understand the reporting and qualification requirements.

To access the American Rescue Act of 2021 in its entirety, visit: https://rules.house.gov/sites/democrats.rules.house.gov/files/BILLS-117HR1319EAS.pdf

 

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As we take a look back at 2020, we are thankful for the opportunity to do what we do best: help municipalities thrive. This year alone, we’ve onboarded over 35 new municipalities and expanded our relationships and usage with over 45 of our existing clients. We’ve also been able to help our clients navigate the unique challenges of 2020 by developing new tools that enable them to work efficiently from any location and keep critical tasks in motion. 

With over 200 clients served in the state of New Jersey, you might be asking why so many municipalities have trusted Spatial Data Logic to streamline and automate their daily workflows. There isn’t just one reason, it’s truly a combination of an unparalleled software solution, 23 years of experience and a backend team dedicated to ensuring our clients success.

We look forward to continuing to serve our clients in 2021. 

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In the state of New Jersey, property taxes are among the highest in the nation. In an effort to reduce costs for municipalities and their tax payers, Governor Murphy appointed two “shared service czars” in 2018 to provide support and help secure funding for local governments looking to implement shared service agreements with other town and county agencies. 

Yesterday, Spatial Data Logic had the pleasure of joining the “czars” and the Morris County Chamber of Commerce to review shared services in depth. When executed correctly, shared services not only quell the need to raise property taxes, they also increase operational efficiency and can help secure higher-quality services. 

Did you know Spatial Data Logic supports shared services?

Spatial Data Logic has worked with a number of municipalities throughout the state of New Jersey to implement shared service agreements. We support can support your efforts in one of two ways:

 

Shared Services For Departments

For municipalities that offer shared services for Building, Fire Prevention, Public Works and other departments, Spatial Data Logic offers a special agreement that permits the licensing to be used in up to 5 towns. A handful of clients take advantage of this option.

 

Shared Services For Municipal-Wide Software

Municipalities can also pool resources to purchase and share software licenses. For example, Chatham Borough and the Borough of Madison entered into a shared service agreement for SDL’s municipal management software.

By working together, Chatham and Madison not only received cost savings, they also were able to purchase a larger number of licenses allowing them to extend the software to more departments within their respective towns. The boroughs received the 2020 Municipal Innovation award in recognition of the cost savings they achieved by creating a shared-service agreement with Spatial Data Logic.  

To learn more about shared services, click to watch the full session:

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We invite you to watch the latest installment of Morris Chamber TV’s “Let’s Talk” where Jack Flood and Mike Stanzilis discuss the importance of digital adoption, gaining alignment and simple steps that New Jersey municipalities can take to make that leap.

 

Some key take-aways include:

Adopting technology helps save time and money

  • Municipal software centralizes your data, allowing staff to quickly locate information, take action and field resident questions.
  • Eliminating paper, automating processes and enabling access for residents frees up time for staff to focus on other tasks.

Citizen portals promote open government

  • Municipal software helps provide the online services, accessibility and functionality your residents have come to expect.
  • Opening up your citizen portal creates a level of transparency. The public can submit requests and check the status of their requests 24/7.
  • Technology has also become the answer to never-ending OPRA requests. By enabling your citizen portal, the public can access the information they need online.

Municipal alignment is critical for success

  • To get the most out of your software, it’s imperative to get your elected officials, department managers and end-users onboard to ensure your staff will use the solution.
  • Without their full buy-in, your municipality will just end up with a shiny new toy that sits and collects dust.

Are you ready to join the 190+ New Jersey municipalities who have trusted Spatial Data Logic to streamline, automate and digitize workflows? Contact us to learn more.

 

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SDL had the pleasure of sponsoring the Morris County Chamber of Commerce's Municipal Forum on Thursday, July 30th. 

During this session, Mayor Mike Stanzilis (Mount Arlington), Mayor Sam Morris (Mine Hill), and Councilwoman Jocelyn Mathiasen (Chatham Borough) shared how their municipalities have embraced technology to adjust to a remote work environment and better serve their constituents.
 

We have shared the recording and hope your town can benefit from hearing their experiences and insight firsthand.
 

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