Westlake to use GoGov app to improve communication

Published 1:00 pm Monday, September 26, 2022

The City of Westlake is preparing for emergency temporary housing and shelter assistance in case of a future disaster, Ratcliff construction will be doing repairs or other needed work on still damaged hurricane city facilities and the council approved an agreement with GoGov at the Monday City Council meeting.

GoGov is an app that will make sharing information, including timelines, between citizens, officials and employees more convenient, according to City Clerk Andrea Mahfouz.

“Let’s say you want us to see how your neighbor’s grass is overgrown and get something done about it,” Mahfouz said. “Generally, you’d have to call here during office hours unless you wanted to leave a message, which would delay the work, then we would figure out when we would be able to send someone out in response to the complaint, draft and mail an official notice, give the owner time to mow the grass and if they didn’t, send someone out to take care of it.”

The app will eliminate visits to the property and cut down on time between complaint and resolution.

The Council can see where a matter stands in the process and will be notified of expiration dates.

The app can be used to notify citizens in case of an emergency or of a need of a boil advisory, for example.

Ratcliff Construction was awarded the remediation, abatement, stabilization and temporary facility work for hurricane-impacted city facilities per recommendation of the city’s consultant handling FEMA hurricane claims.

Council voted to opt out of the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Temporary Housing and Shelter Assistance Program, thereby maintaining land use regulations relative to permitting for temporary housing.

Cathy Denison-Robert introduced herself to council and administration as a new Westlake citizen, the executive director of Business & Workforce Recovery Solutions and as a private consultant.

“Any nonprofits, workers and families that have been devastated by or will continue to be impacted by the COVID crisis or hurricanes can apply to Business & Workforce Recovery Solutions. It’s free because of funding from the United Way,” she said.

Cathy Dennison and Associates is her consulting business. For over 20 years, she has been doing grant writing, strategic grant consulting and training.

Dennison-Robert said that the United Way funding will only allow a certain number of nonprofits and individuals to be reached for case management. She can be reached at 337-502-1911.