So I thought we'd look into this a little. Let's use the words "public safety" as an example of a possible CoSM website search. According to the website U.S. Legal.com (link), the definition of "public safety" is as follows:
Public Safety refers to the welfare and protection of the general public. It is usually expressed as a governmental responsibility. Most states have departments for public safety. The primary goal of the department is prevention and protection of the public from dangers affecting safety such as crimes or disasters. In many cases the public safety division will be comprised of individuals from other organizations including police, emergency medical services, fire force etc.
On November 25th of this year Sierra Madre Chief of Police Larry Giannone gave a presentation to the City Council on the possibilities of establishing a Public Safety Commission. The term "public safety" was at the heart of this City Council deliberation, as becomes obvious when reading the following passages from the Chief's report.
Now let's say you are working on your own report to further investigate the possibility of reorganizing the Police, Fire and Paramedic Services of Sierra Madre in a more proactive and community oriented way. Perhaps you favor the "Public Safety Commission" idea, but feel you need more information in order to understand the issues a little more clearly. Obviously the City of Sierra Madre website would seem to be a good resource for such a search.
Using the keywords "public safety" for your search, here are the results that turn up:
Nothing much there, right? You can try this with any number of topics and I think you will find that more times than not the results you get are random and not readily organized into any easily defined categories, and therefore not very useful.
Compare the above results with those you can find on the City of Monrovia website (link), the City of Pasadena website (link), and the City of San Dimas website (link). Obviously it can be done.
So my questions are these. What methodology was used for codifying information searches on the City of Sierra Madre website? And assuming that the information is there, how might it be made more readily accessible to site users?
Considering the taxpayer money that was invested in this site, things should be a lot better than they are.