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practice NL: ‘Waterschappen’ enhances the availability of geo-information for citizens

NL: ‘Waterschappen’ enhances the availability of geo-information for citizens

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Posting Date
12 October 2009
Last Edited Date
27 January 2010
Country
Netherlands
Domain
Submitted By
ePractice Editorial Team (EUROPEAN DYNAMICS SA) | Belgium

Aiming to make geographic information (geo-information) regarding the condition of the water accessible to the citizens, an agreement has been recently signed between the State Secretary Bijleveld and the member of the Governing Board of Veluwe, Mr. Verwolf, on behalf of the 'Waterschappen' (Unie van Waterschappen, UvW).

According to the agreement, the 'Waterschappen' will provide geo-information to citizens who need them, charging them with a distribution fee. All consumers will have unlimited access to this information online by post or by phone. Moreover, a certain number of scientists will post the available geo-information on their websites.

The 'Waterschappen' contains data regarding the location of water-channels, and of the various structures, as well as the areas water is stored in case of floods. Thus, before buying a house, citizens are able to know whether this is built in a water storage area or not. Students may also use the information available for school projects on the structuring of geographical areas.

The agreement contributes to the evolution of the national policy and to the improvement of the services provided to the citizens. Moreover, a pilot project has been initiated last August for applying, within the next year, the service of automatic dispatching of this information, aiming to reduce administrative charges for the inhabitants and, eventually, the number of complaints.

The project in question is part of the Enhanced Services program coordinated by the Dutch State Secretary. In the framework of introducing the electronic services to 19 building blocks, authorities work closely together, as it is one of the 10 most pressing problems in the public service to be resolved.

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