Arlington, Chesterfield named top digital counties in U.S.
Survey identifies best technology practices in the U.S.
Chesterfield and Arlington counties (along with three California localities) tied for the top spot on the Center for Digital Government (CDG) and the National Association of Counties (NACo)’s 18th annual Digital Counties Survey, which was released Tuesday.
The survey identifies the best technology practices among U.S. county governments by evaluating initiatives that streamline delivery of government services, encourage open data, collaboration and shared services as well as enhance cybersecurity and contribute to disaster response and recovery efforts.
“Chesterfield leadership recognizes the value of technology and has invested at the enterprise level to equip all county departments to improve service delivery to the residents of the county,” Chesterfield County Chief Information Officer Barry Condrey said in a statement. “Our IST department, working in partnership with customer departments, has implemented systems and technologies to rival any in the private sector, all to raise the level of service to our residents.”
CDG and NACo recognized Chesterfield County for its StratIS (Strategic Information Sharing) data program and the county’s chatbot, ChesterBot, which allowed the county to manage a surge in call volume related to the pandemic. The county has also worked to adapt to telework by doubling its VPN capacity and implementing Microsoft Teams across all county departments.
Arlington was recognized for its digital equity program, through which it provides digital connections for disadvantaged populations. The county offers education, training and programming for residents and county facilities offer outdoor, drive-up digital hot spots.
“Technology plays an important role in nearly everything we do at the local level, especially now with the challenges of the pandemic,” Arlington County Manager Mark Schwartz said in a statement. “It’s an honor to be recognized for our efforts this past year to provide the digital solutions and critical connections using technology that will benefit our community the most.”
Several other Virginia counties placed in the top 10 for their population sizes, which includes:
- 1,000,000 or More Population Category: No. 10, Fairfax County
- 250,000 – 499,999 Population Category: No. 8, Loudoun County
- Up to 150,000 Population Category: No. 2, Albemarle County; No. 4, Montgomery County; No. 7, county of York; and No. 9, Franklin County
Conducted annually in the spring, the Digital Counties Survey is open to all U.S. counties.