The SLC recognizes that state employees work hard, not only to provide outstanding services to their citizens, but also by striving to develop and adapt new and improved programs to make their states a better place to live. Such efforts should be recognized and rewarded, and innovative ideas should be shared among colleagues.
The SLC STAR program represents an opportunity to highlight successful programs implemented within your state, especially those that can be replicated across state lines to improve the region as a whole.
Stephanie Noble, Research and Publications Associate
The submission period for the 2014 SLC State Transformation in Action Recognition (STAR) has passed.
The STAR program identifies and promotes innovative ideas and programs from the Southern region’s best problem solvers: the states themselves. The SLC welcomes applications from a wide array of state agencies, departments, and institutions operating within the executive, legislative, and judicial governmental branches. Following a review process, finalists are invited to present at the SLC annual meeting, and two exceptional programs will be selected by a board of experienced policy professionals as models of efficiency and effectiveness in state governments in the Southern region.
Creativity – Does the program represent a new and creative approach to solving common problems or issues?
Effectiveness – To what extent is the program successful at addressing an issue, and how efficiently does it operate?
Impact – How far-reaching are the benefits and solutions of the program?
Transferability – From a logistical and fiscal standpoint, could the program or practice easily be transferred to other states?
Virginia | DMV Connect Program
Virginia’s DMV Connect Program recognized the problem of offender reintegration and those with limited mobility and created a portable camera system allowing DMV personnel to go into facilities, such as prisons and assisted living sites, and process ID cards in real-time for populations that might not otherwise have access or face impediments that would deter them from acquiring a state-issued ID. Working with state agencies within secure parameters, DMV personnel access birth certificates and other confidential records and compile all necessary documents to complete an ID application. For those in the prison population, this is pivotal in reintegration as an ID is required to rent property, cash checks, or apply for a job.
West Virginia | office of child nutrition
The Feed to Achieve Act establishes a public/private partnership to address the needs of West Virginia school children who are unable to routinely access school meal programs. With no need for additional funding, the program operates in concert with federal school nutrition programs, existing state and county programs, along with private donations. The Feed to Achieve Act directs that a restricted account be created for which gifts, grants, and donations received by schools may only be designated for the increase of participation in the nutrition programs outlined in the Act. Donations are tax-deductible and funders are able to direct the use of their donations to the school nutrition program of their choice, such as the Backpack or Summer Feeding Program, and to explore other meal alternatives using locally sourced produce. With donations restricted to specific purposes, public/private partnerships and donor awareness have increased funding, which is then partnered with current federal allocations.
Additionally, the West Virginia Office of Child Nutrition, under the auspices of the Act, was able to identify more families and expanded eligibility through the use of a web-based interface that identifies which children are eligible for meals based on family income, as well as monitor the increase/decrease in participation. In reviewing these statistics, it was found that, by creating alternatives to before-school meals, such as grab-n-go or eating breakfast during first period, more children would have access to meals and perform better in the classroom.
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