The Danville City Commission heard a proposal for a project with The Idea Farm to create a landing page for Danville websites at its meeting Monday.
Emma Jackson, CEO of advertising and marketing agency The Idea Farm in Danville, gave a presentation about the site. She said Danville has no central location on the Internet, no organization of essential resources, and no software to manage data and communicate with citizens.
Danville has six different major city partner websites, in addition to major community organizations such as Ephraim McDowell, Center College and the Arts Center of the Bluegrass.
“We’re severely lacking in our online presence,” Jackson said. “As much as we’d like to think that doesn’t matter, unfortunately we all know that this is the first place people look when evaluating our community and what we offer.”
The six websites are the City of Danville (danvilleky.org), EDP (developdanville.com), CVB (danvillekentucky.com), The Heart of Danville (downtowndanville.com), The Chamber of Commerce (danvilleboylechamber.com), and Parks and Recreation ( danvilleboyleparks.com).
The landing page would connect all of these websites into one central hub while providing the individual identities of these organizations. It would organize links to the websites in a way that both residents and visitors could easily find different information.
“Our community has so much to offer for a small community, but we need to be able to create those avenues online so that when people go to a show at the Norton Center, they can see what else Danville has to offer has,” Jackson explained.
The Idea Farm will also develop a Citizen Relationship Management (CRM) system, an online database that governments can use to store citizen information and documents.
It would allow the government to respond quickly and accurately to citizen inquiries, requests and information about policies, practices and procedures. There could also be a web chat for city officials to quickly reply to citizens.
City Manager Earl Coffey said citizens had asked for a better, more user-friendly website for Danville.
“The city’s website is very mechanical, we want you to do business with the city, it’s not necessarily a recruitment or marketing tool,” Coffey said. “What we would like to do is propose this as a project to work with partner organizations like the CVB and the Heart now that they have directors.”
If approved, the landing page can be online until the end of 2022 and also has the option of combining different websites.
“We’ve been looking for this for a long time,” said Commissioner Kevin Caudill.
With support from the arts center, the city was looking for an artist to create a sculpture for the Memorial Plaza in front of the fire station.
They nominated four artists, who then made design suggestions. The city approved the choice of artist Guy Tedesco, who lives near Louisville and specializes in metal sculpture.
The sculpture will use a piece of 9/11 steel owned by the city. The project budget is $19,000.
In other matters, the City Commission:
• Appointed Sarah Berry to Cemetery Committee. She is also on the Ethics Council.
• Approved a project to assess and resolve water issues in the parking garage elevator shaft. The city has carried out extensive maintenance on the shaft over the years due to water ingress.
• Approved the hiring of Ronnie Yates as Assistant Maintenance Supervisor at Parks and Recreation.
• Approved promotion of Daniel Grigsby to police detective.
• Authorized counsel to initiate settlement discussions with Core and Main regarding potential breaches of contract related to a piping bid without initiating legal action.
• Wednesday budget meeting postponed in deference to death of former Mayor Bernie Hunstad. The commission asked people to keep Hunstad’s family in their thoughts and prayers.
Commissioner Denise Terry said: “He has spent his life serving this country and this community and we just have to make sure we acknowledge that. I actually spoke to him about a month ago and he wasn’t well but he was in good spirits. Thoughts and prayers for his family.”