KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Residents rely on their local government to step in when an issue arises, whether it be a street maintenance problem or concerns over health code violations.
From fraudulent activity by a business or contractor, to zoning violations – Kansas Citians rely on the city services to listen, take action, and follow up with resources intended to better assist in resolving their concerns.
But some may not realize that the first step to getting a problem resolved and receiving assistance is by reporting the problem to the city, and others may simply not know how to go about submitting this request.
“By having the requests all in the same system, we can easily access the information for reporting, planning, and budgeting,” John Baccala, spokesman for the city, said in an email. “For example, when reports of downed limbs/trees were received during the last storm, we continually reported and mapped the location for the City Manager and the departments.”
“We could track where we received the most damage and could allocate resources to those areas.”
How to submit a 3-1-1 request
When alerting the city of an issue, residents are expected to submit a 3-1-1 request through a self-service web and mobile portal, by calling 3-1-1, or by visiting City Hall. Each request or complaint is submitted into a system that allows city staff to collect information and effectively pass it off to the appropriate department.
“The 311 system shows residents where issues have already been reported so they do not need to enter a duplicate report,” Baccala, said in an email. “When the request is created, it provides the resident a tracking number, and if they use the app or provide an email, they will get updates when the departments add information to their request.”
The city’s 3-1-1 tracking system, which can be viewed publicly online, grants community members the ability to report problems, request services, check the status of previously submitted service requests, as well as obtain information regarding city programs, services and events.
Baccala said the city urges residents to use the 3-1-1 system so that staff can respond in a timely manner, as well as track the locations of reported issues.
“We also use the reports from the 311 system for some departments to route their crews,” Baccala said. “When reports of missed trash are received, Solid Waste uses the information to route the locations and send a truck on the best route to collect the misses.”
Once a request is submitted, the city reviews the request and determines how to best assist each person with their issue, whether that be sending a maintenance worker out to make repairs on damaged property, requesting a tow truck to remove an illegally parked vehicle, or connecting someone with legal counseling.
“The system also sends the requests to the departments in real time and, in many departments, automatically creates a work order in their specific system,” Baccala said. “ Photos can also be attached, and departments are finding this option very helpful.”
What problems can I report to Kansas City 311?
Kansas City accepts 3-1-1 requests for the majority of concerns residing within city limits, including concerns related to:
- Animals and pets
Residents experiencing a problem with a stray, lost, aggressive or deceased animal can report this matter to the city.
Individuals can request repairs and maintenance to bridges within city limits, including but not limited to issues related to graffiti, potholes, pavement repairs, guardrails and more.
- Contract and labor violations
A city complaint can be submitted if you are a victim of fraudulent contractor or business practices, human trafficking, workplace discrimination, unfair pay and working conditions, an employer that neglects federal labor standards, or a company fronting as a Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE).
If you believe you have fallen victim to human trafficking, employment discrimination, lending, credit or banking discrimination, tenant and housing discrimination or disability discrimination, you can submit a complaint to the city.
- Food safety
Those concerned about food safety should submit a complaint to the city, if it pertains to food handling at a convenience or grocery store, event, food truck, restaurant, school or any other location where a food handler is present.
- Health code violations
Individuals can request inspections and submit complaints for suspected health code violations, including concerns related to air quality, housing, rodents and bugs, swimming pools and aquatic facilities, noise, childcare facilities, and beekeeper registrations.
- Healthy homes
Residents concerned about the health and safety of their lodging can request a Healthy Homes Rental Inspection, as well as report any problems a tenant is facing with housing.
- Illegal dumping
A city complaint can be submitted if someone suspects illegal dumping or excessive littering, whether it be in an alley, the street, or at a rental property. Residents can also submit requests for illegal dumping cameras, along with requests to set out trash and bulk items prior to trash pick-up day.
- Land bank issues
If you have a concern regarding illegal dumping on private property, trespassing and open entry, weed maintenance, or sidewalks and stairs, a city complaint should be submitted.
- Lead poisoning prevention
Residents who want to learn more about lead poisoning prevention can request information through 3-1-1. Requests for lead testing and complaints regarding lead poisoning violations can also be submitted.
- Parks and recreation
Anyone experiencing problems with an aquatic facility, athletic field, community center, scheduling reservations at a facility, fountains, lights in a park or facility, playground equipment, homeless camps in parks, trees in parks or boulevard medians, and the trolly track trail should submit a complaint. Residents can also submit complaints related to general maintenance, graffiti violations, mowing, weed maintenance, and trash or dumping.
- Property violations
Concerns related to an unregistered vacant property, graffiti, litter and trash, trespassing and open to entry, property maintenance issues, outside storage of inappropriate items, and/or weeds should submit a complaint to the city.
- Public safety
Residents can report ambulance and EMS billing concerns, homeless camps, illegal burning of materials, submit ambulance and EMS service feedback, schedule fire appearances or station tours, as well as report malfunctioning weather sirens, suspected drug houses, illicit serving and selling of liquor, request records from the police department or submit a community complaint to the police.
- Sewer or stormwater
If you suspect environmental noncompliance, a sewer backup, leak, manhole issue, sewer odor, storm drain problems, or a sinkhole, residents should submit a 3-1-1 request. Residents can also submit requests for storm investigations.
- Sidewalk and Right-of-Ways
Individuals can submit complaints related to curbs that are not accessible to people with disabilities, curbs that need repaired or replaced, damaged sidewalks, sidewalk obstructions, damage or obstruction caused by a utility or contractor worksite, as well as report advertising signs in the street and requests for a new sidewalk.
Residents can request snow and ice treatment for streets and bike lanes, along with any other snow concerns.
- Solid waste services
If you need assistance locating blue bags, dropping off leaf and brush, requesting a dumpster, requesting a bulky item pick-up, requesting assistance stops, obtaining a medical tag, or for information on the waste-tire drop off program, submit a request.
- Street maintenance
Any issues pertaining to ditch cleaning, utility and contractor worksites, guardrails, potholes, street plates, and cracks in the pavement can be addressed. Requests for speed bumps, mowing on the streets, resurfacing alleys and streets, and any other street maintenance requests should also be submitted.
If a resident notices a street light out, or multiple street lights, a report should be submitted. Residents can also report blinking lights, day burning, damaged poles, or the visibility of a street light due to trees.
- Traffic signals
If a traffic signal is damaged, malfunctioning or undergoing an outage, submit a report.
- Trash/recycling/bulky services
Residents can report overflowing city-owned trash cans, missed trash, missed recycling and missed bulky items. A request should be submitted for blue bag pick ups and the trash holiday schedule.
- Trees (city owned)
Residents can report issues with city-owned trees, whether the trees are dead, declined, vandalized, causing visibility concerns or in need of insect and disease treatment. Residents can also submit requests for a new tree, limb and stump removal, permits to remove or plant a tree on a city street, and trimming.
- Vehicles and parking
Individuals should notify the city regarding abandoned vehicles, illegally parked vehicles and concerns related to towed vehicles. They can also obtain tow lot information, information on how to reclaim a towed vehicle, and report parking meter concerns.
- Water services
Residents should submit a 3-1-1 request when they come across a leaking fire hydrant, have concerns regarding seasonal hydrant painting, water quality and water theft. Residents can also report having no water, water pressure issues, along with meter leaks, and street and yard leaks.
- Zoning and permits
Residents should report construction related issues, zoning violations, and submit short-term rental applications.
To submit a 3-1-1 request, use the city’s 3-1-1 request portal online, call 3-1-1 or (816) 513-1313, or visit City Hall in person. Download the myKCMO app to submit and track 3-1-1 requests anywhere.