Public Information Office Receives Three NACo Achievement Awards
Montgomery County’s Office of Public Information received three National Association of Counties (NACo) Achievement Awards this year for outstanding programs. The following programs received awards: Montgomery Al Dia, Emergency Medical Services Transport Reimbursement Law Public Education Campaign and MC311 Customer Service Center and Website.
Montgomery Al Dia (Montgomery Today), hosted by Lorna Virgili, is a new weekly half-hour Spanish language radio show airing on Radio América 1540 AM and County Cable Montgomery (CCM). The format of the weekly show includes interviews, news, PSAs and public call-ins. County Government departments, County Council and other County agencies collaborate to provide guests, news and information to the County’s fast growing Hispanic community. The show airs live on Radio America every Tuesday at 2 p.m. and is recorded live-on-tape and airs on CCM several times during the week. Check the website for the show schedule and to watch archived shows.
The Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Transport Reimbursement Law Public Education Campaign was initiated to educate the public about the facts surrounding the new EMS transport fee that went into effect on January 1, 2013. The public education campaign aggressively and proactively reached out to County residents to ensure that they were not concerned about calling for an ambulance because of cost, as they will never receive a bill for ambulance transport. The campaign explained how the law works and how it is benefiting the County’s Fire and Rescue Service.
Montgomery County’s MC311 Customer Service Center and website was launched in June 2010. Now after three years, the center has logged more than 1.75 million calls and its website receives more than 20,000 unique visitors every month. The call center has extended it hours over the past year to meet the increased demand for services after normal working hours. Overall, the MC311 call center has been an enormous success and meets one of the County Executive’s goals of providing “A Responsive and Accountable County Government.”
“All three of these programs deserve recognition,” said Patrick Lacefield, director of the Office of Public Information. “I am proud of the work of our staff to meet the needs of all our residents in the County. Whether it’s the Montgomery Al Dia show reaching out to the Spanish-speaking community, or our EMS campaign educating residents about the new ambulance law or our MC311 system making it easier to reach County Government, we strive to provide unique programs and useful information to all of our residents.”
For more information about any of these programs, call the Office of Public Information at 240-777-6507.