Harlingen city commissioner uses smartphone for public works issues, says residents can do the same

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas (ValleyCentral) — The City of Harlingen’s mobile app has been able to address public works request faster. One city commissioner has been on a mission to make the city more beautiful, starting with the potholes.

“What I started doing was called ‘project pothole’. All I was doing was cruising around my district and searching for any type of potholes to basically record it and open up a work order,” said City Commissioner District 5 Rene Perez.

Perez wanted to set an example for residents so they can see how easy it is to submit public works requests. He said many people tell him they did not know the app existed.

“It’s a lot faster because it automatically generates a work order and they receive it and just start working on it,” said Perez. “Because a lot of people here in Harlingen didn’t know they could do that.”

The city’s technology department said that by taking a picture of the problem, it automatically sends the latitude and longitude to help direct public works to the issue.

“My recommendation to the community would be instead of making a phone call use the mobile app because that it is a for sure way to take care of it,’ said Sergio Mujica, Management and Information Systems Director.

Mujica said that these requests will alert and escalate to upper management until the problem is solved.

“It will escalate, it will get email notices sent to supervisors all the way to the city manager,” said Mujica.

Mujica said in August potholes were the highest request submitted. He added residents can also request other services through the app such as overgrown grass, public works requests, and mosquito complaints.

Other cities like Brownsville, Mission, McAllen, and Edinburg have this service as well, but Perez said it is his priority to make sure that residents know it exists and to continue to make Harlingen beautiful.

According to Perez, so far he has been able to successfully submit 26 pothole requests through the city’s app.

“And that’s just me by myself! So I can just imagine if everybody else downloaded the app there’s no limit to what we could accomplish here in Harlingen just to make it look better,” said Perez.

Perez said you can find this app on any smart device’s app store.

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