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Digital Update: Canal WiFi, the Public Safety Center move, and more

Posted on July 24, 2020


Omar and Anthoney prepare a root access point

Canal WiFi Network

Installation is underway for the Canal WiFi network. The County was able to secure additional equipment through a grant as well as another substantial donation from a private donor. We are starting to move into phase 2 which will be working with property owners to install equipment within buildings which will extend the network to more people. While equipment is being installed, we have experienced a delay with regards to the circuits that are needed to support the network. We hope to get this work completed soon but are waiting for final confirmation from AT&T.

Thank you to Public Works and an extra thank you to the facility division for their support and assistance. This project continues to be an incredible cross-sector collaboration of departments, agencies, and private companies. We’re so grateful to everyone who has contributed their time and money to this effort.


The Big Move Begins

This week Digital has started working with Police and Fire in the first phases of moves into the building. Xantrion spent Wednesday through Friday working with Police staff to unplug, plug, set up, and test computer workstations from the Police Department Annex. Next week our team will continue to move more Police employees into the building and support the move from temporary Fire Station 51 into their new home.

Through the next month our team will be working at a sprint as Police and Fire continue moving into the building in phases. Even though people are starting to occupy the new building there are still a few technology projects to be completed to meet everyone’s needs. We are looking forward to working with Police and Fire as they settle into their new home and start learning how they can leverage the new, modern capabilities of the Public Safety Center.


Word on the Street

In June, over a third of the conversations online in our community has been related to our local economy. Following the announcement of “Dining Under the Lights”, about 58% of the local economy conversations have been related to restaurants and bars. The remainder of the discourse was about Retail (23%) due to the cancellation of the Farmers Market, and Business Affairs (17%) due to the announcements about delays in the reopening of businesses. The second most discussed topic was Public Health, comprising 29% of the discourse. This discourse was driven by reports about confirmed cases, as well as posts about public testing and inviting people to get tested for free.

This month, the topic of Public Health has comprised 34% of conversations driven by the coverage of a recent COVID outbreak at San Rafael nursing homes followed by messaging encouraging our residents to get tested. Although topics around our local economy dropped in recent weeks, the “Dining Under the Lights” initiative continues to be well received by residents.


Looking Back at 19-20

Let’s just say that this last fiscal year didn’t exactly go as planned. Since the pandemic hit, most of our work has been redirected to meet new community needs around public information, access to the internet, and working remotely. We’ve calibrated to these new needs and are continuously adapting to a new normal which requires us to think very differently about our priorities and how to get work done. You can check out the status of our 19-20 workplan here: employees.cityofsanrafael.org/digital-work-plan


New Cybersecurity Newsletter Coming Soon

The County of Marin and the Marin cities and towns have formed the Marin Information Security Collaboration (MISC), with the goal of sharing cybersecurity best practices and resources across multiple Marin agencies. The County’s Chief Information Security Officer Jason Balderama will be creating a newsletter that will be shared with City of San Rafael staff with relevant information regarding current cybersecurity issues, and resources and best practices that can be used at home and in the workplace. We look forward to this new partnership with the County and are grateful for Jason’s expertise and efforts.


Stay Sane with New Settings

Microsoft has two settings that may help you with the plethora of video calls you are on throughout the day. One setting you may want to consider is to add a default that makes sure that every meeting you create is a Teams online meeting. Another default you can add is to end your meetings with a buffer, so you can have time to stretch and avoid back-to-back meetings. These and other features can be found in your Calendar settings.

calendar settings

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