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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Southern California

Mayor Villaraigosa Unveils 'MyLA311' Smartphone Application

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa unveiled MyLA311, a new citywide smartphone application for Angelenos on Monday.

A tree falls in Los Angeles and needs to be immediately removed. There's an app for that.

The MyLA311 smartphone app lets Angelenos pay bills and voice city complaints. (Neon Tommy)
The MyLA311 smartphone app lets Angelenos pay bills and voice city complaints. (Neon Tommy)

Starting Monday, Los Angeles residents will be able to voice city complains regarding crime, potholes, graffiti, fallen trees, and more using MyLA311, a new application for iPhone and Android smartphones.

They simply add a geotag with their location, attach a picture and hit "submit service request."

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced the application's release on Wednesday.

"Silicon Beach has raised the game," he said, "and the city of L.A. needed to raise ours. And we did."

The application cost $130,000 to develop, which Villaraigosa considered "very reasonable."

The app also allows residents to pay their water and electricity bill using the "Pay My LADWP Bill" function, and features a "City Hall News" option that keeps residents up to date with information about the latest city programs and links to City Hall's Facebook, Twitter and Youtube feeds.

By utilising the phone's GPS system and camera, the app strives to make local complaints a simpler process in one of the nation's largest cities.

City councilman, Eric Garcetti, advocates for the app. "We've got to get into the 21st century in terms of being more efficient in running city operations," Garcetti said.

Although the number of reports and complaints is likely to increase, Garcetti believes that the city staff will be able to handle it.

A 2.0 version of the app is scheduled to be released, featuring the addition of a Spanish language option, as well as the ability to pay for parking meters.

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