Don’t know who to call to complain about graffiti or abandoned cars or other urban nuisances? Well, there is a “app” for that. The app is provided through PBOT so the reports are limited to abandoned autos, debris in the road, graffiti, illegal parking, park maintenance needs, plugged street drains, potholes, sidewalk complaints and failed or failing streetlights.
You are asked but not required to provide your name and contact information with each report in a “contact” screen, although it isn’t obvious to me where that screen is so I use the “comment” section. If people don’t provide valid contact information the value of the app will be significantly reduced since it will allow unstable people to harass their neighbors, so I strongly recommend you provide contact info. As an example, there is an individual who has filed over 1,000 sidewalk complaints in Irvington and I understand someone similar in Northwest. The Irvington person is known, but BPOT says they have to take the complaints seriously, so they have an inspector following up on each one. That is really a waste of time since many of the complaints, even if they are legitimate, are for minor cracks and bumps – mostly caused by tree roots, which if disturbed to fix the sidewalk often harm the tree.
I also have to say, my experience filing complaints the “old” way rarely led to any action, so I don’t know that this will be an improvement, but it saves me hunting for that phone number or writing a letter, plus the instant gratification for filing a complaint feels great!