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Information and General Services

Posted on: July 27, 2023

Nevada County Wins Fifth Place in Center for Digital Governments “Digital Counties Survey”

DC Award

Nevada City, CA – Nevada County’s Information Systems department has been awarded fifth place for its 2023 submission to the Center for Digital Governments Digital Counties Survey.

Each year the Center for Digital Governments in partnership with the National Association of Counties surveys counties across the United States and honors winners for their innovative use of emerging technologies, enhanced cybersecurity and strengthened digital equity initiatives.

“This year’s survey results highlight how counties continue to use digital tools to respond to top priorities by providing comprehensive access to services, expanding opportunities for economic development, and ensuring the ability to be resilient in the face of unexpected crises,” said Todd Sander, Vice-President, Center for Digital Government.

As part of this year’s Digital Counties Survey submission, the Nevada County Information Systems Department highlighted its new 2023-2025 IS Strategic Plan (nevadacountyca.gov), which informs the County’s long-term technology objectives based on feedback from our county-wide business partners. The submission also brought attention to a newly formed Business Relationship Management Team dedicated to interfacing with customers with a focus on developing and sharing ideas, strategies and initiatives. Over the past year, the Team was instrumental in working alongside Nevada County Behavioral Health as a key contributor to a group of twenty-three California counties as they selected a new Electronic Health Records system. The new records will integrate technologies to deliver mental health support services in a timely and comprehensive manner to those in need.

“We are committed to providing a strong and secure technological foundation for county departments and our community. Receiving this Digital Counties Survey award is a great indicator that our Information Systems team is on track with our goal,” said Nevada County’s newly appointed Chief Information Officer, Landon Beard.

Nevada County’s use of technology during the last year has driven advances in many areas including in the Office of Emergency Services. This year, the office partnered with the Geographic Information Systems team on a field maps application allowing defensible space inspectors to collaborate with the Fire Safe Council increasing defensible space services to residents who are low income, elderly or disabled. The Geographic Information Systems team also partnered with Ladris Technologies and OES on an AI-driven evacuation route planner tool enhancing the existing Ready Nevada County Dashboard (arcgis.com).

Another example of how Nevada County has leveraged the use of technology during 2022 was its use of data-driven efforts to keep people with mental illness out of jail and connected to treatment. Since 2016, Nevada County has been collecting accurate baseline data on serious mental illness issues within its jail, this data is analyzed to reveal the drivers behind this problem. Nevada County’s success in using this process to connect individuals to treatment services led to it being recognized as a Stepping Up Innovator County in 2022.

In the area of cybersecurity, 2022 efforts included the implementation of a National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Cybersecurity Framework self-assessment. The assessment will be used to guide the Information Security Program in short- and long-term planning, outlining the current state and a target state as well as track progress over time.

“The Information Systems Department views technology as a critical component in achieving the Board's objectives and the County's general mission in delivery services to our community. We are thankful for our Board of Supervisors continued strong information technology investment policies which are key to the County's success”. said Information and General Services Director Steve Monaghan.

Nevada County has been a top performer in the Digital Counties Survey for almost two decades.  Within its population category of “Up to 150,000” Nevada County has placed in the top five each year since 2004, winning first place six times.

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