By Amanda Amsel
In an effort to keep residents informed, a local township has launched an innovative new website that will be the eyes and ears of the community.
On Oct. 10, Prairie Township launched its new website, www.prairietownship.org.
“We redid our website from the ground up,” said Randi Good, administrative assistant to the township. “We hired a whole new company to completely redesign our existing site, the only thing that is the same is the actual web address.”
In the spring, township trustees approved spending approximately $17,000 on redesigning the township’s website. In May the township hired the company CivicPlus and the project began.
“We ended up spending $16,665,” Good said. “However, now that the site is done, it will only cost $2,499 a year for maintenance. This includes a free redesign in four years.”
Prior to the redesign, content on the website was done in house. However, as technology moves into the digital age the trustees agreed it was time to update the site.
The new site will keep residents more informed about what is going on in the township and give them more access to township officials. Some of the new interactive features of the site include reporting a nuisance complaint, reporting a streetlight that is out and letting the road department know about potholes.
“Before people had to call or email the township if they wanted to report an issue,” Good said.
“Now people do not have limited access to the township and can report issues anytime.”
According to officials, as business continues to grow in the township residents need to be more informed about what is going on. The new website fills that void by providing a place where residents can read township news, file a complaint and view upcoming events.
“People can also sign up for alerts that they will get via email or text,” Good said. “These alerts are useful if a water main breaks and shuts down a road, there is a boil water alert, severe weather or a variety of other emergency situations.”
Via the website, township residents can also learn about the new Prairie Township Community Center. At the new website they can sign up for classes, view the construction progress and look at the center renderings.
“We are trying to be more proactive with township residents,” Good said. “I think once they are aware of how much they can do they will really appreciate it.”
Residents can also view current township job openings, apply to jobs and read township trustee meeting minutes. In the future visitors will also be able to sign up for the township’s newsletter.
“We have never had a website of this caliber before, so we are really excited,” Good said. “If you want to stay updated on township news I really invite you to check out this site.”
To view the new website, visit www.prairietownship.org/131/Community-Center.