Lexington, KY - Lexington is one of 10 local governments nationwide chosen to be part of the 2014 Code for America program, where local governments team with civic-minded technology experts to improve government service.
At the Code for America Summit in San Francisco this morning Code for America announced the winning governments, along with the 31 Fellows who will work with them.
Working with the governments, the Fellows will explore new approaches to resolving local challenges by building computer applications to engage the community and collaborate with other local governments. Over the past three years, the Fellowship program has produced more than 75 web apps in collaboration with 20 municipal governments. Three of the code writers will work with Lexington full time for around 11 months, according to the mayors office. The coders may not always be located in the city during the fellowship, but they will be working with city officials including two members of the mayor’s staff, the city’s planning commissioner and two local “captains,” Chase Southard and Nick Such, who will ensure meetings of the group’s "civic hackers."
Each year-long Fellowship project costs $360,000, which is funded through a combination of local government resources and community matching grants and donations from a number of foundations, companies, and individuals. Lexington’s fellowship includes $180,000 in private funding.
"Each of these 10 governments has a remarkable commitment to innovation and is supported by forward-thinking and dedicated staff,” Code for America Co-Executive Director Bob Sofman said in a release. “This top-notch combination of Fellows and governments ensures a productive year and long-lasting partnerships.”
“This project is all about continuous improvement. Setting the bar high,” Mayor Jim Gray said. “That's what Lexington is all about. Getting up every morning and thinking, 'How can we improve today what we did yesterday.' Citizens of university cities like Lexington want a high quality of life, and Code for America helps raise the bar through innovative solutions and improved services."
The 10 governments for the 2014 program were selected from a pool of 50 applicants. In addition to Lexington the governments are: Atlanta; Charlotte, N.C.; Chattanooga, Tenn.; Denver; Long Beach, Calif.; Mesa, Ariz.; State of Rhode Island in partnership with the City of Warwick, R.I.; San Antonio, Texas; and San Juan, Puerto Rico.