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Schipske Announces Innovative On Line Way for Residents to Vote on Budget Cuts

Schipske Launches Another Innovative On Line Way for Residents To Vote on Budget Cuts – IdeaScale Allows People to Engage in Discussion About Other Ideas Too

August 15, 2012 – From the moment she posted her Council calendar on line and set up her blog six years ago, Fifth District Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske has brought one innovative way after another to open up Long Beach city government to its residents.

So when she looked how to combine “crowd sourcing” with citizen engagement, she found a perfect source with IdeaScale.com.

“I talked with Josh Folk, VP of Government Relations at IdeaScale and he walked me through how this could work to get residents to go on line and actually rank and discuss the proposed budget cuts,” explains Schipske. “When I found out IdeaScale is used throughout the federal government and by Fortune 500 companies such as Avid, Xerox, SAP, Wired Magazine, Choice Hotels to get feedback from citizens and customers I thought why not here in Long Beach.”

Schipske, who has made cuts to her own council budget and staff, took time to input the proposed cuts and information herself into http://5thdistrictbudgetchoices.ideascale.com/ . “That’s the kind of work I do in the middle of the night.”

“I do hope residents will take time to use this tool,” says Schipske, who also urged the City to utilize the interactive budget challenge made available by Next10. (It can be viewed at www.longbeach.gov/budgetchallenge ). “If this works, I can see using this on many policy issues facing the City Council as a way to get residents engaged. I also think it can be used to solicit city employee ideas on how to save money and make their departments more efficient.”