The Town of Huntington's new website, after 15 months of research and building, made its debut Monday.
The redesign and technology upgrades promise to be user-friendly, chock full of information and fun, officials said.
They tout the ease of navigation and the design, set up in the way people look for information, not how government is organized.
"I'm hoping that the better organization will allow residents to get a fuller appreciation of the many programs we have to benefit them," said Town Supervisor Frank Petrone, who with town board member Mark Cuthbertson, spearheaded the upgrade. "People are so website sensitive that the more interesting it is and the less bureaucratic and governmental official it looks, the more they are apt to explore it."
Town officials said the website's last major update was in 1999. Some of the highlights of the site include quick links to social media and multimedia features, improved organization of news items and links to town museums, historic sites, villages, libraries, fire departments and business groups.
"We're hoping the public has a better experience with accessing services," Cuthbertson said. "One of the key upgrades is the integration with the website and the use of smartphones and tablets."
A team of town employees researched other government websites from states that included Arizona, Colorado and Kentucky to find ideas to create Huntington's site, developed with the assistance of QScend Technologies, which will host the site. The video archiving and indexing of public meetings is provided by Granicus Inc., which signed a two-year contract of $9,500 for each year.
"It's user-friendly, it provides residents with easier viewing," town board member Mark Mayoka said. "I'm very happy with it."
Town board members Susan Berland and Gene Cook also applauded the new site.