311 number coming to Manatee County to help residents with non-emergency needs

311 Information call center

BRADENTON, Fla. (WWSB) - People in Manatee County will be able to dial 311 soon for any important questions they may have that’s a non-emergency. County officials say it’ll be a one stop call center for residents.

“If you have any questions, complaints, reports in the government, instead of trying to know which department you need to call, what number you need to use, it’s one number to get you to the government and hopefully they can answer your questions right there without a transfer," said Jake Saur, Director of Public Safety for Manatee County.

Currently the more than 700 calls a day come in on at least 15 different main numbers for the county. Art Stadlin is the Project Manager for Information Technology at the Manatee County Public Safety facility. He says the trained 311 operators will be working in the same room as the 911 operators.

“With 311 when we get there, finish all the consolidation we will be able to simplify how our residents and visitors can contact county government for business purposes,” said Stadlin.

The 911 center is already a busy facility with 380,000 calls a year and 311 will add to those numbers. Saur says 311 is still months away. There’s work that has to be done to get the system up and running and and also training the operators.

“As the county continues to grow, along with it so does the government," said Saur. "We wanted to make sure that the visitors and the residents of the county could have one phone call that they needed to contact the government and get a resolution to whatever their concern was.”

Officials are expecting 311 to be ready to go by the end of the year.

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