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April 24, 2019

MISAC recently co-sponsored City Launch 2019, a three-day conference presented by Connected Communities Collaborative. The conference, held in San Diego, focused on “Smart Communities.” Greg Duecker,Director of Administration, Western Municipal Water District (WMWD) in Riverside California attended the conference representing MISAC and he filed the report below upon his return. Opinions in this piece are his own, and may not reflect those of WMWD.

What “Smart Cities” Means to a Special District
By Greg Duecker
Local government communities around the world have packaged some of their innovation, technology, education, and community engagement initiatives into frameworks called “Smart City”, “Smart Community”, or even “Smart Region” as far back as the 1990’s. However, innovation in cities actually goes back as long as there have been cities, usually with the most innovative cities being the most successful (such as aqueducts allowing the growth of ancient Rome).
“The concept of Smart Cities is not new, it is just new to us” (Bob Bennett, CIO, City of Kansas City).

March 20, 2019

Jim Madaffer sat down with the Western Riverside Council of Governments for their bi-weekly podcast series (COGCast) to talk about smart cities, connected communities and transportation technology.

As a former member of the California Transportation Commission, Jim brings a futuristic look to the world of transportation, goods movement, supply chain and more.

“There’s no question we are in a period of change today unlike anything we’ve ever seen,” Jim says. “Transportation, artificial intelligence, and wireless technology are some areas where we’re going to see rapid change and they’re going to affect how we govern, quality of life and how we operate day to day.”

With the right technology, smart cities can improve everything from public safety, citizen engagement, economic development, transportation, and more at a lower cost.

“Cities need to have a plan, and every city is different,” he says. “Cities need to start thinking about what outcomes they want to achieve, how to prioritize these items in a constrained environment, and who’s responsible for various activities. Cities that plan this way are truly on their way to becoming a smart and connected community.”

Smart cities also support:

– Bridging the digital divide
– Cybersecurity
– Public safety
– Social mobility
– Economic development
– Autonomous transportation
– Education and workforce development
– Improving environmental impact
– Sustainability


“We’ve worked with cities that didn’t have a plan, and now they do, and it’s ingrained in the way they do business day in and day out,” Jim says. “The region should band together and bring all smart city plans under one roof and think about what they can do to make Western Riverside the most connected and smart community possible. The vision is to figure out what can do where we’re all rowing in the same direction.”

COGCast is a bi-weekly podcast series featuring a variety of topics and issues relevant to the western Riverside subregion in 20-minute episodes. Every episode provides an opportunity for listeners to learn about agencies, programs, and/or issues impacting quality of life in the western Riverside region.

Click here or the button below to listen to the full episode.

March 1, 2019

In his capacity as the San Diego County Water Authority (SDCWA) Board Chair, Jim Madaffer led more than a dozen coffee takeovers last month as part of the Brought to You by Water campaign.

The water authority collaborated with local roaster Café Moto to select and roast a special blend as tribute to the importance of safe and reliable water supplies for the San Diego region. During the coffee takeovers, Madaffer shared samples and invited attendees to enter the Water Authority’s photo contest.

The SDCWA Board of Directors declared February as San Diego Brewing Month, in recognition of the significant benefits generated by the craft brewing industry and local coffee industry to the economic and quality of across the county.

Madaffer presented at several local organizations, including the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, Kiwanis Club of Tierrasanta, San Diego Regional Economic Development Council, San Diego Brewer’s Guild, San Diego Tourism Authority, San Diego Taxpayers Association and the Downtown San Diego Partnership.

February 15, 2019

What will our cities be like 10, 20, or 50 years from now? Considering the technological sea change we’ve experienced over the last decade, how will city leaders best manage the future? How will cities harness the power of innovation to improve quality of life?

Jim Madaffer moderated a panel on the future of cities during the League of California Cities 2019 City Managers Conference in San Diego on February 14.

The panel featured Southern California city officials, including Chula Vista City Manager Gary Halbert; Pismo Beach City Manager Jim Lewis; and John Keisler, Director of Economic Development at the City of Long Beach.

During the session, panelists shared perspectives on planning for the future, capturing and analyzing data, and building the appropriate technology infrastructure to achieve goals.

September 11, 2018

Are you a local government official attending the League of California Cities Annual Conference this week in Long Beach? This year’s conference features several interesting sessions on smart city strategies, technology and local government innovation. Check out our top picks and plan your day accordingly!

If you’re not attending this year’s conference, don’t worry – Madaffer Enterprises is working with League staff to put together a webinar on smart city strategic planning and the importance of creating prioritized roadmaps for civic technology transformation. Keep an eye out for an announcement with more details on our webinar later this month.

September 5, 2018

San Diego-based public affairs firm Madaffer Enterprises announced today that Anaheim Councilmember Kris Murray has joined its growing team of public affairs consulting professionals.

August 10, 2018

As dockless vehicles continue to proliferatecities across the U.S. continue to struggle with how to govern this new model of two-wheeled transportation. 

August 2, 2018

Research shows that Aug. 2 is the deadliest driving day of the year.

June 22, 2018

Communities can expect a rapid change in transportation in the near future. This will affect how we build, rebuild, and fund transportation.

May 31, 2018

Wireless connectivity is an issue currently confronting cities across the country. This isn’t something that is going to happen in ten years, but rather a revolution that is going on right now. No one could have predicted wireless to explode the way it has.

March 28, 2018

After the City of Atlanta’s computers were held for ransom in a cyberattack last month, many city governments are wondering if they face a similar risk of essentially being held hostage by profit-seeking hackers.

March 16, 2018
The sudden proliferation of dockless bicycles and scooters — from companies such as LimeBike, Ofo, Mobike and Bird — has taken San Diego by surprise, leading to excitement, confusion, frustration, and joy.
March 2, 2018
In his capacity as a member of the California Transportation Commission, Jim Madaffer moderated a panel on the future of autonomous vehicles during the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Leadership Delegation to Sacramento.
June 15, 2017
If you’re a resident of San Diego County, it’s likely you’ve been overcharged for water by the LA-based Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (MWD). Jim appeared on NBC San Diego’s Politically Speaking in summer 2017 to shed light on the overcharges and reckless practices of MWD.
May 23, 2016

Governments will need to modernize the way they raise money for transportation infrastructure in the 21st century.

October 26, 2015
Carrying a personal automated external defibrillator (AED) in the trunk of his car for 13 years finally came in handy when Jim Madaffer used it to save a man’s life.
February 17, 2015
Today, Jim was interviewed on KPBS for a piece called “California Committee Explores Road Usage Charge in Place of Gas Tax.” Why are the tax revenues that fund road repairs shrinking? What is California going to do about it? Is this a problem in other states, too?
February 7, 2015
By Jim Madaffer
The gasoline tax is archaic and no longer works. Replacing the gas tax with something more equitable — perhaps a tax based on vehicle weight and miles driven — needs to be considered.California has a serious problem. Our existing method of funding maintenance, repair and construction of our roadways cannot meet current or future demand.
February 1, 2015
By Jim Madaffer
Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Read the daily news and you will recognize these three words. Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA) kills an estimated 7 million worldwide and 460,000 people in the United States each year, according to the American Heart Association.
September 15, 2014
By Jim Madaffer
This sign should be plastered all over Washington, D.C., as lawmakers return from summer break. Congress has had the past five weeks to visit their homes and travel on America’s crumbling highway system.It is time for lawmakers to craft a long-term solution which includes multiple funding sources for transportation infrastructure, rather than relying on just one pot of money.
September 12, 2014
By Jim Madaffer
Years ago when the city of San Diego attempted to implement a water purification program, fear mongers were loud. The unfavorable “toilet to tap” term was coined and the City Council chose to halt the project.
That was in the 1990s and San Diego has since moved forward with its Pure Water Program.
September 5, 2014
By Jim Madaffer
“Serious drought. Help save water.”
We see lit-up signs with these five words everywhere in California. More importantly, we feel the effects of this “serious” drought and mandatory water restrictions that have come with the problem.
August 19, 2014
By Jim Madaffer
Uber, Rideshare and Lyft are filling a void the taxi industry has left wide open – that of consumer choice.
These services are all part of the growing “sharing economy,” a socioeconomic system built around the sharing of human and physical resources. They’ve caught onto the way to do business in the 21st century.
August 2, 2014
By Jim Madaffer
Chevron, eBay and Toyota are just three companies that have left California for Texas, taking hundreds of jobs with them. Headlines are chock-full of many other companies looking to the Lone Star State.
But it doesn’t have to be that way.