City Innovations to be on Display at Conference
BELLEVUE – More than 800 city leaders from across the country are expected to gather in downtown Bellevue next June for the Transforming Local Government conference.
The conference, held annually in a different locale by the Innovations Groups, will provide the city with a unique forum to showcase recent innovations that have earned it national attention.
“Bellevue’s reputation nationally as a city dedicated to developing innovative ways to improve the delivery of city services continues to grow,” said Innovations Group President Bob Hart. “The 2007 conference will give the city a chance to display some of these initiatives, as well as explore new ones with some of the best municipal leaders in the nation.”
The three-day conference also is expected to generate substantial business for the city’s hotels, restaurants and other businesses, particularly those located in the downtown core near the Meydenbauer Center, where most convention activities will take place.
“Meydenbauer Center and the Bellevue Convention Sales Group are pleased to help bring this conference to Bellevue in 2007,” said Stacey Graven, the center’s executive director. “We expect the event will generate nearly $1 million in economic impact for our community when conference attendees and their guests dine in our restaurants, stay in our hotels, shop and enjoy the many other amenities Bellevue has to offer.”
Innovations Group, based in Tampa, Fl., is a professional organization comprised of a consortium of 347 cities and counties. The group, founded in 1979, works with local governments to solve problems by developing new ideas and approaches.
The theme of the 2007 conference will be leadership. Representatives from local governments are expected to showcase efforts in their communities to apply emerging technologies to improve municipal services, community and environmental leadership, economic development and citizen engagement.
Bellevue City Manager Steve Sarkozy said that the conference program is still being developed, but it was likely the city would present case studies on several successful city initiatives including:
- Development Services Initiative (DSI): How has the city kept pace with the estimated $3 billion of commercial development now underway or in the planning stage? DSI has played a major role, bringing all the city’s development services functions into a single line of business spanning multiple departments. The result has been faster, predictable results utilizing the latest technology.
- eCityGovAlliance: Bellevue has played a leadership role in the development of the alliance, an inter-local partnership with other cities that provides cross-boundary web services including MyBuildingPermit.com, NWMaps.net, MyParksandRecreation.com and NWProperty.net.
- Service First: When the city’s new City Hall opened last winter, an innovative approach to customer service delivery debuted with Service First. Residents, visitors and other stakeholders coming to City Hall can get all their needs met working with a single staff person in a single location.
- Wrap-Around-Services: Partnering with the Bellevue School District and United Way, the city has created a unique service delivery program that brings social agencies, neighborhood groups, faith communities and families together to support elementary school children on a variety of levels using schools as the focal point.
“Bellevue has had a number of noteworthy successes in recent years in developing new and more efficient ways of delivering traditional city services,” Sarkozy said. “We’ve accomplished this through the hard work of a lot of creative employees who haven’t been afraid to apply new approaches to the challenges at hand.”
Persons interested in learning more about the conference or registering can do so at http://tlg.bellevuewa.gov. Or they can contact Charlie Bush at (425) 452-6837.