New hours, expanded online options coming to Minneapolis 311

For four years, residents have called 3-1-1 to get a burned out streetlight fixed, to ask questions about their drinking water service, to report a stray dog to animal control, or to contact the City about the many services it provides. Now, cuts in State funding are prompting Minneapolis 311 to change its call center hours. At the same time, the City is making it easier to get assistance on the Web.

Starting on April 12, the hours for Minneapolis 311’s call center will be 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday. Callers after 7 p.m. can leave a message, and a call center agent will help them the following business day. This change in hours affects only 5 percent of the call volume that comes into Minneapolis 311 on a daily basis.

At the same time, Minneapolis 311 is improving its online service. There will be more things folks can do at Minneapolis 311 than ever before, making it possible for more people to request service themselves. This improvement should help Minneapolis 311 continue to provide the same access to help in the face of State funding cuts.

The online resources of Minneapolis 311 are available 24/7. One of the new Web features will let residents report graffiti online. People will be able to take a digital photo of the graffiti and mail it into the City. Along with being even more convenient to residents, this will help Minneapolis tackle graffiti in town by tracking any emerging patterns.

As with all branches of City government, Minneapolis 311 is dealing with budget cuts following a dramatic reduction from the State in Local Government Aid. In order to provide the same level of service with fewer resources, Minneapolis 311 needed to put those resources where they’re needed the most.

Published Mar. 31, 2010