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December 05, 2007



Centralizing this kind of data isn't rocket science. The hard part is getting everyone to the table to figure how who has what data, and how to join it.

IMO, it's better to use existing staff so that you develop some institutional knowledge. Typically, a big government initiative translates into cutting a big check to IBM or some consulting company, who swoops in, does a half-ass job, and swoops out when the money is gone, leaving a 75% completed project to a bunch of employees who don't know what the consultants did.

Having your regular staff do the work sometimes leads to unforeseen benefits as well... whenever people are encouraged to talk to each other, useless or duplicated processes are identified and streamlined.

Miriam Axel-Lute

You make a good point about using existing staff for this. I agree--I didn't mean to imply that there out to be some fancy outside consultant. It's much better to have someone internal to tweak the database based on ongoing actual practice and needs. But I do think giving the process enough respect that someone isn't trying to a half-assed job over their lunch break in software they don't really know is important too. The folks I've talked to in other cities who've started to get a handle on their abandoned properties emphasize good, well-organized, accessible, and constantly updated information above all else.


Considering how six or more months have passed since Tuffey first announced the Albany Police Department would begin mapping the location of crimes committed within the city and would have that information reported on their website, and that nothing has yet appeared there, I feel we can expect the same result.


After all, didn't he say 'Block by Block' would not be something that was going to happen overnight, that it would take 2 years before it was actually initiated?

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