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City Beat   Technology Brings Increased Efficiency T he City of Gilroy has instituted a new software package that will make the preparation of staff reports and agendas for the City Council and Planning Commission a much more efficient, less time-consuming and near paperless process. The software package is provided by Accela. Staff training began in October, and the system went live for the November 21 st Council meeting. The process automates the entire staff report preparation, circulation and approval process for better work- flow and productivity. The system then creates the agenda and meeting packet — completely eliminating paper. Past Mayor Perry Woodward stated, “This is an excellent example of the City using technology and new software not only to improve staff efficiency, but also to further our citywide goal of environmentally sound best practices by reducing paper use.” “What used to take 4-5 hours to accomplish with a manual paper process now takes 10 minutes to complete – with just a click of a button we have a council packet ready for distribution,” stated City Clerk Shawna Freels. The City of Gilroy is also preparing to release a new website module that will update residents on local projects including housing construction, High Speed Rail and local roadway projects. This new website will also allow residents to make suggestions and comments on these projects, thus enabling staff to hear the opinions of the public on important projects. Downtown Paseo Panels Installed T he idea of building two downtown paseos to connect parking on Eigleberry with shops and restaurants on Monterey began in 2013. Then Mayor, Al Pinheiro championed the project and with Joan Buchanan brought together a group of volunteers to help make it a reality. The late Claudia Salewske was also instrumental in the completion of the first historical paseo which is located between Fifth and Sixth Streets. Seven panels highlighting the local historical perspective on agriculture, hospitality, the cowboy era, business, garlic, the early settlers and community border the walkway. Landscaping, seating and over 125 engraved donation bricks are scheduled to be installed soon. A second paseo between Fourth and Fifth is still in the planning stages. GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2017 17