The City of Springfieldís public safety departments: Police, Fire and Emergency Management, have all reached quality standards high enough to receive national accreditation. Many cities have strived to achieve this. Most have failed. We didnít stop there.
Our Public Works and Environmental Services departments, and Dickerson Park Zoo have also received national accreditation by their respective associations. We believe this means our services are provided at the highest level of quality, meeting national standards and benchmarks in a way that surpasses the ordinary.
Our Parks and trails system has been named a National Gold Medal Award Winner, proving our commitment to provide top-notch leisure opportunities, to offer programs for relaxation as well as stimulation, and to encourage personal and community enrichment.
But we are more than a just a safe and fun community.
We are also nationally recognized for our economic resiliency.
The Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce has been chosen as the national Chamber of the Year and its collective efforts with the City, County and business members, have helped us become a national leader in job growth with an unemployment rate far below the national average.
Because we work together, and work together well, we are able to boast of this wide array of accomplishments. And we believe that makes us like no other city in the nation.
Miami-Dade came close.
And we believe the beach is over-rated, anyway.
The men and women of the Springfield Police Department are not only known for quick-solving crime skills and catching the bad guys. They are also accredited by the Commissioners for the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA), which means the department has achieved a level of recognition only the elite in law enforcement achieve. Itís an honor theyíve garnered 15 years running.Fewer than 5 percent of law enforcement agencies in the country have successfully applied and received this accreditation.
Springfield firefighters will tell you itís true. They actually run toward danger, while others run away. The Springfield Fire Departmentís accreditation by the Center for Public Safety, proves that the department has enviable response times, high-caliber training, efficient resource deployment and excellent public education.Only 120 fire departments in the country has successfully received this accreditation.
The City of Springfield Public Works and Environmental Services Departments are accredited by the American Public Works Association (APWA). The association recognizes governmental agencies that go beyond the requirements of the management practices established nationally in the public works industry. Fewer than 1percent of all agencies qualify for this accreditation.
The video above shows just one situation in which City departments go above and beyond to help the citizens of Springfield.
The Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce won the 2012 Chamber of the Year award, the nationís only award recognizing the dual role chambers have in leading businesses and communities. The award was presented by the American Chamber of Commerce Executives to top chambers that have not only demonstrated success in community leadership and organizational strength, but also have made an apparent impact on key community priorities, such as education, transportation, healthcare and cultural vitality.
Only zoos and aquariums that meet the highest standards, are accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums. To become accredited, Dickerson Park Zoo underwent a thorough review to ensure it has, and will continue to meet, ever-rising standards. Accreditation also allows the zoo to participate in the coordinated conservation programs among other accredited North American zoos.
Springfield-Greene County's emergency management program received national accreditation from the Emergency Management Accreditation Program (EMAP) in April 2012. EMAP is an independent and voluntary evaluation of state and local emergency management programs based on national best practices. At the time of our accreditation, Springfield-Greene County was one of only 13 local programs in the nation to be accredited by EMAP.
A nationally known organization, the Springfield-Green County Park Boardís efforts were recognized by the National Recreation and Park Association in 2000 when named a Gold Medal Award winner. The most prestigious award of its kind, the Gold Medal Award honors communities throughout the U.S. that demonstrate excellence in long-range planning, fiscal resource management, citizen support systems, environmental stewardship, preservation, technological integration, program planning and assessment, professional development, and agency recognition.
E.Republic's Center for Digital Government and the Digital Communities Program Nov. 7 announced the top-ranked cities in the 2013 Digital Cities Survey. Springfield, Mo. ranked 10th among cities with populations of 125,000 to 249,000.
Top-ranked cities improved transparency with open government initiatives and access to city services via mobile apps. They eliminated waste and enhanced service levels using agile project management, and reduced costs and improved services through advanced analytics and performance measures, according to e.Republic.