Middletown Springs will use its official municipal website to serve long-term, seasonal, new and potential residents and other visitors: connecting them to town government, community information, events and important factual information.
The website will include:
- Easy to find and retrieve municipal information such as meeting schedules, official announcements, minutes, policies, plans, bylaws, emergency contact information, etc.
- Access to complete and clear answers to frequently asked questions.
- Contact information for town officials
- Printable PDF’s for basic town forms and transactions.
- Access to a comprehensive community calendar, local business information and local organizations.
- Links to important regional and state websites.
Goals and Objectives
Middletown Springs has identified the following strategic goals and objectives for the website.
Goal 1 – Ensure the quality and ease-of-use of the municipal website.
- Objective 1a — Make it easy to find the most used or requested information.
- Objective 1b — Establish a governance process for posting of content in a timely and accurate manner.
Goal 2 – Make it easy for users to get municipal information.
- Objective 2a — Online calendar listing all public meetings & Town Office hours.
- Objective 2b — All meeting minutes online in a timely manner.
- Objective 2c — Online access to official municipal documents such as Town Plan, Town Report, budget, deeds, land records, etc.
- Objective 2d — Make it easy to contact municipal officials & emergency personnel.
Goal 3 – Provide 24 hour access to important municipal information.
- Objective 3a — Provide online forms where possible and information needed for various licenses and registrations.
Goal 4 – Make it clear that Middletown Springs’ municipal website is the official website for the town of Middletown Springs.
- Objective 4a — Use www.MiddletownSprings.vt.gov as the official website domain name.
- Objective 4b — Middletown Springs’s official municipal website will be separate from the Middletown Springs Library, Middletown Springs School, and other town organizations’ websites to ensure clear governance structures.
Goal 5 – To utilize the website for community development and connections.
- Objective 5a – The Middletown Springs website will foster community development by making connections between people, local business, organizations and town government.
Website Management and Governance
- No advertising will be allowed on Middletown Springs’s website to avoid any conflict of interest issues.
- Ensure continuity of operations during emergencies; develop emergency procedures.
- Avoid redundant content on the site.
- Create operating procedures to manage the site and all the functions that support it: everyone in the governance structure knows and understands the policies and procedures.
- Establish responsibilities for each person that is involved with the website: everyone should know and understand their roles and be accountable for their content areas.
- Establish a policy for content approval with roles for staff that will approve and manage content.
- Management controls identified to ensure the town’s website and web operations are protected from fraud, waste, abuse and mismanagement, and the controls are reviewed regularly.
- The town website will not host pages for community organizations, but can link to them.
- Establish a linking policy. Add a disclaimer stating that Middletown Springs is not responsible for another website’s content.
- Website will be fully-accessible/handicap accessible.
Roles and Responsibilities
Website Administrator – Determines high-level technical tasks such as website configuration changes, programming, and working with contractors on website enhancements.
Town Website Management Committee – made up of Town Librarian, Select Board member, Planning commission member and members at large.
Website Content Manager – Review and approve website content. Ensure compliance with website content guidelines.
Town Librarian, (Kimberly Mathewson)
Town Clerk, (Laura Castle)
Content Editors – Edit web pages and submit content changes and additions to the Content Managers for review/approval and posting to the website.
Town Officials (Clerk, Treasurer, Listers, Auditors, BCA)
Select Board Chair/Clerk
School Board Chair/Clerk
Chair or designee from various town organizations, commissions and committees
Content Management Guidelines
- Content must be approved by Content Manager before posting.
- Ensure content is current and accurate.
- Organize content based on audience needs.
- Follow handicapped accessibility guidelines for text and images.
- Write for the Web in plain language.
- Documents posted as PDFs
- Use appropriate image resolutions and format for the web.
- Avoid clutter on the home page.
- Use basic common content, terminology and placement.
- Contact Us page (contact information)
- About Us page (organization information)
- Site map or A to Z index
- Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Proposed Content for Middletown Springs Website
[in no particular order]
- Town committees [Planning, Conservation, Energy, etc.]
- Town officers [Clerk, Treasurer, Selectboard members, Listers, Auditors, Trustees of Public Monies, Road Commissioner, Library Trustees, and other elected town officials]
- Select Board information [Members, Agenda, Minutes, Info, Protocols, etc.]
- Ordinances and Policies
- Emergency information/ Emergency Management Plan
- Meeting agendas and minutes
- Events calendar
- Deeds and Land records
- Links to other Middletown Springs sites (Library, School, FrontPorch Forum)
- Town history
- Pay taxes, fines and license fees with printable forms
- Middletown Springs businesses [list & links]
- Town Organizations [list & links]
- Recreation [Springs Park, Sullivan Woods, Bone Builders, etc.]
- Solid Waste Management / Transfer Station information and schedules
- Town Meeting / Election Information
- Property Tax information
- Maps [parcel, flood plain, historic district, etc.]
- Visiting Middletown Springs / Moving to Middletown Springs