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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Monday, November 28, 2016

Bethlehem Tp Using Social Media to Increase Transparency

In an effort to reach out to the community, Bethlehem Township is increasing its use of social media. This is from Manager Melissa Shafer's latest monthly report:
• Township Website and Social Media

The Dashboard is up on the front page of the Township website. Now you can go to one spot to get up-to-date information about Township departments and finances.

We launched the Bethlehem Township YouTube page with our first video on the Township’s Leaf Collection Program. The goal is to complete a video for each of the Township departments by the end of next year, showcasing a different service that we provide.

We have also expanded our social media outreach from just Facebook to other platforms including Snapchat, Instagram, and Twitter. Our goal is to improve communication and citizen engagement and we are working on ideas for some interactive programs with the BTCC staff and Police Department.

Thanks to the hard work of our Finance Department, you can know pay your sewer bill online through a program called Invoice Cloud. A flyer is being sent with the next round of sewer bills with more information for the residents.

• Nixel

We have recently upgraded the Nixel platform for emergency alerts to allow us to take advantage of unlimited text and email alerts, social media posting, Google public alerts, anonymous tipping, severe weather alerts, and emergency voice calls. The Board may wish to consider adopting policies and procedures for the emergency voice calling component.
There is also a fairly active Bethlehem Township Police Department Facebook page, which from time to time includes pictures of people that police are trying to contact, as well as invaluable traffic information.

Above you can see the township's first video (featured above), focused on leaf collection from 9,000 properties.

As a matter of constructive criticism, I'd suggest links to the Facebook page, Youtube channel and other social media on the Township web page. It only links to the police department Facebook page.


Anonymous said...

Instead of spending time and money playing on the internet because we all know the the work is going to get done just collect the leaves! The Township needs to spend time cutting costs and paying down debt instead.

Anonymous said...

So will the department heads be taking their staff out to lunch on the taxpayer dime to discuss their video's?
Will the twp manager stop the free lunches and free for all spending by department heads?

Anonymous said...

Mind boggling that above people complain about this.

Anonymous said...

People complain about everything. If there was no social media presence, the twp would be accused of not being transparent, and failing to present itself in a technologically savvy means. When it shows employees at work, they complain about the person taking the video or photo not working. Some folks cannot just say "thank you" and be on their ways.