LOS LUNAS — The village of Los Lunas unveiled a new program so information can be more readily accessed by residents.
The “TextMyGov” service allows residents to text single words to a local number — 505-388-0798 — in order to get more information about certain issues or events.
“We’ve been always looking for ways to allow residents to communicate with the village and obtain information from the village in a timely manner,” Erin Callahan, Los Lunas village community development director, said in a presentation to the village council.
The service is not manned by a village staff member, but rather operated by a bot.
The bot being texted is pre-programmed with several one and two-word phrases that will take you to certain pages on the village’s website. If an unknown phrase is sent, then an automatic keyword search of the village website is done to get the resident closer to the information they are seeking.
“We’re still making a number of adjustments to the keywords. For example, with code enforcement we have a code enforcement service request app where somebody can go online and report a barking dog or an overgrowth of weeds,” Callahan said. “It’s a long length to send that to someone, so, someone can text this service and say ‘barking dog’ and it will turn a response that gives them that link.”
The service can also inform people of the time and place of events put on by the village, the crimestoppers app utilized by the police department, village hall hours, bill pay information and many other frequently asked questions.
“We’re continuing to try to get the word out to residents that this is a feature that’s available,” Callahan said.
To begin the service, text ‘HI” to the local number, 505-388-0798, and the sender will receive a welcome message with a brief description of how the service works.