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Rosemount rolls out innovative public engagement system

Rosemount City Hall. File photo

The City of Rosemount has launched a new service to collect opinions of its citizens via Polco, an innovative engagement platform where residents can directly influence the community decision-making process. Through insights using Polco's civic analytics website and apps, the city will post questions directly to residents and receive insightful data on local policy decisions.

By increasing civic engagement through web-based polling, the Rosemount City Council believes there is an opportunity to improve policies and services. The council values the wisdom of Rosemount citizens, and the city is committed to improving communication channels to receive feedback and influence decisions.

"When all constituents feel a part of the decision process, communities inherently become more resilient to future challenges," said Nick Mastronardi, Polco's founder and CEO.

Residents become active users by visiting and creating an account. Polco's platform is available via web, mobile, email and any place Polco e-ballots are found online. The service is free to all constituents.

Polco is committed to a strict privacy policy in which the system only shares aggregated results without personal identifiers. Participants' detailed data and votes are never shared. Users may choose to make additional comments on the posted topics available to the public using their names.

The introductory questions posted today ask whether residents feel satisfied with city government and what areas need improvement. More questions will be added about every two weeks.

The city tested the system during last summer's Leprechaun Days community celebration to collect opinions from visitors to the City Council booth. The test was well-received by those who participated.

Rosemount City Administrator Logan Martin shared his excitement with usage of the new tool.

"With local government's main purpose being to serve its residents, Polco will help us receive more real-time feedback from folks on issues that matter to them," he said. "This is an exciting advancement in how government interacts with residents in a more convenient way, and we would love to hear from you, so please plug in and participate."