Page 4707 - Week 13 - Tuesday, 31 October 2017
assured that we will continue to improve the service so that our passionate and committed residents continue to participate in the delivery of services throughout the city, ensuring that the city that we are building remains a great place to live.
MS LE COUTEUR (Murrumbidgee) (4.08): I thank Ms Cody for raising such an important issue in the Assembly, and I thank the government for its efforts in this regard and, in particular, for the improvements to fix my street. It is probably the most loved of all the ACT government services. I used the new version of it, the new front end, at lunchtime to report some non-working streetlights near my house in Woden. It seemed easier to describe exactly where they are—these ones are not on a street—and to be precise about it.
The new suburb landing page is definitely prettier, with the pictures of garbage collection, mowing and street sweeping. But I think it is the interactive map that is the real winner in this reiteration. It is not just a novelty feature and new; it is something which will enable people to much better report the issues that they may have in their local communities and also, importantly, to see what other issues have been reported so that they do not feel they have to report what has clearly already been reported.
Certainly I found it a lot easier to pinpoint where the issue was, compared to a street address, which is not always an adequate description of problems. Anything that makes it easier for people to accurately report problems is a good idea. The accurate part is quite important. We do not want the ACT government to waste its time trying to find things which are a couple of hundred metres away and they are not going to fall across.
Another way fix my street could be improved is better integration with some of the existing smartphone apps. I am sure the people who have worked on fix my street are aware of the large variety of smartphone apps on this council services subject. I am not sure how well they all link into the ACT government’s processes, but I hope that there is some sort of Australian group of councils who work on this subject, and hopefully fix my street is being plugged into that.
Minister Ramsay talked about this working on smartphones. I admit that I have not tried the new version on a smartphone. If it is anything like NXTBus, which is available both as a website and as an app, I would say the website is great but, when you are on your phone trying to navigate around, the native smartphone app works a lot more easily. That is something the government can take on board.
The other thing to take on board is that some of us are not very computer literate. Maybe we could have a process whereby a few smart devices were available at Access Canberra and libraries, with signage as to how to use them. I note that the government yesterday announced the tender to roll out devices to all our high school students, which is great. There are people, generally speaking a lot older than high school students, who have not really gotten into the smart device age, and it might be good to have some of these devices in community facilities.
Looking more broadly at community participation, we are making some progress, although I do not feel we are making enough. Some of the progress is due to the