Public Information Office


Description

The role of the Public Information Officer (PIO) is to plan, coordinate, and manage the operations and activities of the City of Fredericksburg’s Public Information Office to assure the City’s key messages reach the public by coordinating dissemination of news by way of all media outlets utilized by the City. The PIO provides advice and counsel to City staff and officials in the management of community relations issues and serves as the City’s primary media liaison. The PIO also serves as the Public Information Officer in the event of the activation of the Incident Command System.


The Public Information Office is responsible for disseminating accurate, reliable, and timely information to employees and the public. The City utilizes several methods to communicate with employees and the public. These methods include email, the City website, social media channels, Constant Contact distribution, the local newspaper, and the local radio station.

Goals and Objectives

  • Continue efforts of transparency
  • Keep citizens, visitors, and employees informed
  • Better engagement of citizens
  • Disseminate information that is clear, concise, and accurate
  • Have more conversations and gather more feedback from citizens
  • Increase public participation
  • Identify new channels to distribute information
  • Put a human face on local government

In order to meet these goals, we will

  • Work together to continue to provide excellent customer service to our customers, both inside and outside the city offices

What we accomplished in 2022-2023

  • Published City Updates and Employee Newsletters
  • Continued to utilize a Comprehensive Communication Plan that highlights goals, objectives, and specific actions that staff will take to assist the organization in connecting and engaging with citizens, visitors, and employees
  • Provided press releases to local and area media concerning information and developing situations
  • Grew Facebook and Twitter presence with information regarding City programs, special events, meeting reminders, and emergency notifications
  • Increased Facebook audience to over 13,100 followers
  • Increased Instagram audience to over 2,130 followers
  • Continued utilizing the City of Fredericksburg YouTube channel with 400 subscribers currently
  • Utilized additional social media platforms to reach additional demographics in the community
  • Maintained internal communications with employees through newsletters and emails
  • Participated in all emergency exercises including pre-planning activities
  • Incorporated more video into communication efforts
  • Utilized alternate methods to keep the public involved in public meetings including setting up and live streaming the majority of the City Council and City board meetings
  • Updated the City’s website to make it more user friendly and appealing to the end user
  • Continued the promotion of the City of Fredericksburg’s International Dark Sky Community designation

What we plan to accomplish in 2023-2024

  • Develop new social media policies
  • Develop a style guide for all City
  • Participate in all emergency exercises including pre-planning activities
  • Expand use of video in communicating information on City projects and events
  • Monitor the analytics of the City’s website to make it more user friendly
  • Prepare the annual report on the City’s accomplishments
  • Utilize appropriate social media platforms to engage with the public
  • Develop social media campaigns and educational materials to promote City services and City departments
  • Provide relevant, concise, and timely information to the public, media, and City staff regarding services, activities, project updates, disruptions in service, and City accomplishments
  • Utilize YouTube and Live Streaming capabilities for City Council and City board meetings
  • Meet with each department (Director and staff members) to determine how their communication needs have changed
Promote the City of Fredericksburg’s International Dark Sky Community designation
  • Launch a new mass notification system to enable citizens and visitors to receive urgent notifications, emergency instructions, warnings, and routine communications via email, text message, and voice alert to keep the community safe and informed