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Pothole? Dumping? D.C. mayor has ‘an app for that’

WASHINGTON – Disgruntled residents and commuters to the District have another tool to lodge their complaints.

D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray announced the launch of a new smartphone app version of the city’s 311 hotline Wednesday. Those with gripes about potholes, unshoveled snow, graffiti or other municipal issues can now forgo a phone call in favor of an online report. “DC311,” which is free for iPhone and Android, allows users to snap a photo to attach to their complaint.

“With this emerging technology, we continue to ensure that the District is a safe and beautiful place for all of our residents and visitors by giving them a tool for real-time collaboration with our government,” Gray says, according to a city release. “Now there is, literally, an app for that – and within 30 seconds you can be on your way to a resolution.”

Users can track a report after filing it, and follow it through the process to resolution, the release says. When choosing to report a problem, the user can move crosshairs over a map to specify its location, or use GPS. Another feature — perhaps to capitalize on the Instagram social media vacuum — allows a user to see and interact with other users near their phones, and to see how many “Civic Points” they’ve earned.

A map shows all of the reports from a certain area.

WTOP’s Paul D. Shinkman contributed to this report. Follow Paul and WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)