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    Date submitted
  • 03-Jun-2018

CivicPro

Abstract

COMPANY VISION

Our goal is to provide residents and professionals who lobby local governments with the tools necessary to effectively participate in the policymaking process.

PROBLEM

Local governments all still communicate to the public through lengthy notices and agendas. These documents amount to thousands of pages of information published on a regular basis. It’s impossible for the average person to pour through this information to participate in the process of making the local laws that affect their communities. Even for a professional, it can easily take over 300 hours each year just to read the legislative materials for only one city and one county.

SAAS SOLUTION

We built CivicPro to transform voluminous legislative documents into useful knowledge. CivicPro uses technology to collect, sort, and simplify targeted information about local policy-making at the city, county, and special district level - removing the need to sift through complex documents. It offers both free and premium services to monitor public meetings and legislation across cities and counties. With hundreds of local governments in each state, and almost 90,000 nationwide, CivicPro provides an easy-to-use roadmap of the issues that matter most.

Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

Primarily law firms with municipal or development-related practices, lobbyists, government relations teams, and civil engineering firms.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

Local governments all still communicate to the public through lengthy notices and agendas. These documents amount to thousands of pages of information published on a regular basis. It’s impossible for the average person to pour through this information to participate in the process of making the local laws that affect their communities. Even for a professional, it can easily take over 300 hours each year just to read the legislative materials for only one city and one county.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

Both professionals and the general public typically rely on word of mouth or the painstaking, manual process of reading dense government documents to stay apprised of local government. For residents, there is no other tool that enables them to easily prioritize and understand local policymaking. We want to help them make their voices heard. Similarly, professionals currently spend hundreds of otherwise billable hours each year tracking local government information in assorted municipal websites. Our legislative management dashboard will enable these professionals to effectively track the most relevant information across various cities in the least amount of time. Furthermore, we will offer users unique insights on local legislative and decision-making trends with descriptive analytics. Government affairs teams currently rely on anecdotal knowledge of the legislative process to inform their decisions. Our analytics platform will help break this over reliance on hearsay, political rumor, and insider knowledge.

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

We feel we are uniquely qualified since we are led by former Miami assistant city attorney, Matt Haber, and, policy analyst, Jorge Damian de la Paz. CivicPro has significant domain expertise in local government. Matt used to advise city boards, and after numerous public meetings, noticed that even three residents with informed comments could make a difference. Jorge has appeared before local government boards numerous times and helped manage successful advocacy efforts at both the city and county-level. As professionals who regularly monitored (and sometimes wrote) local legislation, we know from experience how difficult and time-consuming it is to keep up with the cities, counties, and special districts that make policy affecting our communities, our lives, and businesses.