In a bid to improve citizen engagement, Aiken, S.C., has unveiled a new texting platform, TextMyGov. In a press release, the city said the platform offers a simple and convenient way for residents to connect with the city using keywords and key phrases in text messaging. TextMyGov also offers residents the opportunity to opt-in to select lists to receive information via their cell phone.
“The introduction of this platform provides another valuable communication tool for our City and our community. It allows residents to conveniently connect with City departments, access information, and explore City offerings,” said Gary Meadows, City of Aiken Media Coordinator.
City officials explained that the new platform enables instant and personalized communication, which the city says will “[empower] residents to actively participate in local government affairs.” The city said that by texting specific keywords or key phrases related to their interests, such as “Athletics” or “Parks,” residents can access the information and resources they need quickly, and outside of traditional business hours. TextMyGov also provides real-time updates, informing residents about important announcements by opting into established city text lists.
“Acquiring this texting platform demonstrates the city’s commitment to enhancing communications with our citizens. It encourages residents of all ages to engage with their municipal government and helps us build a more vibrant and inclusive community,” said City Manager Stuart Bedenbaugh.
Aiken residents can start utilizing TextMyGov immediately by texting their interests or questions to 803-989-7779. The city noted that the system only recognizes keywords and phrases and said that for best results, residents should not send lengthy questions or statements.