County Wins 56 National Awards for Programs, Services

The Military and Veterans Resource Centers, Regional Fire Prevention Program, Vector Control Response to Invasive Aedes Mosquitoes and Zika Virus and the Honey Bee Protection Program were among 56 programs awarded by NACo.

San Diego County received 56 Achievement Awards from the National Association of Counties, which recognizes innovative, efficient programs.

“It’s great to see the County earn national recognition on so many critical fronts, from veterans affairs to fire protection,” said Supervisor Dianne Jacob, chairwoman of the Board of the Supervisors. “The awards validate our efforts to better serve the public and speak to the hard work and cutting-edge approach among our employees.”

San Diego’s 56 awards were the most given to any county in the country. The recognition spanned numerous categories, including Health, Financial Management, Human Services, Community/Economic Development, Information Technology, and Emergency Management and Response.

A few highlights among the award-winners:

An outreach program to provide active duty military, veterans and their families with federal, state and local benefits counseling and assistance with completing forms. Since the program began, outreach increased to over 1,070 new veterans and helped submit over 360 disability claims.

A regional fire prevention program to provide consistent fire safety standards across jurisdictional boundaries. The program improved coordination, increased firefighter safety, eliminated duplicative costs, and improved the Insurance Services Office ratings, which could result in lower fire insurance costs for nearly 75 percent of residents in the County’s primary service area.

The County’s quickly developed plans and rapid response to invasive Aedes mosquitoes and increased travel-related Zika cases. Following the County’s treatment of affected areas, there were no locally acquired cases of Zika in 2016.

The electric vehicle program. Since the first charging stations were installed, the County has been able to avoid the emission of 23 metric tons of greenhouse gases.  The charging stations are available to both staff and the public. Since December 2014, the stations have been used for over 7,100 charging sessions, with 3,500 charging sessions at the County Operations Center alone.

A youth internship program for at-risk youth in partnership with the local Workforce Development Board. The goal for the program is to prepare youth for high school graduation, post-secondary education and, ultimately, a career. At the completion, the interns said that the knowledge, skills, and abilities obtained during this experience will assist them in getting future jobs.

The complete list of winning programs were:

  1. San Diego County Fire Authority – Regional Fire Prevention Program
  2. County Security Initiative
  3. Spanish Public Information to Bridge a Crisis Communication Gap
  4. Advanced Recovery Initiative – Speeding Recovery from Disasters
  5. Child Support Services Job Court Leads to Employment for Customers
  6. District Attorney’s Office Conviction Review Unit
  7. Trauma Responsive Unit in Juvenile Hall
  8. County Probation Officers Co-located with the City of Escondido Police Department
  9. Supporting Electric Vehicle Use by the Public, Employees and County Fleet
  10. Owner Controlled Insurance Program
  11. Encouraging Support and Inclusiveness with the LGBTQIA Community
  12. Digital Literacy at San Diego County Library
  13. Mail Ballot Drop-Off Partnership
  14. Employee Resource Group Council
  15. Beating Zika to the Punch: Open Communications to Defuse a Health Scare
  16. Active Shooter Drill
  17. Aging Backwards: Essentrics Fitness Class
  18. Custom Medical Waiver Form in PeopleSoft
  19. Diversity Dashboards
  20. Diversity & Inclusion Marketing and Branding
  21. Dynamic Out of Pocket Calculator in PeopleSoft
  22. Employee Bike Program Tour de San Diego
  23. Healthy Cooking Demonstrations
  24. Risk Assessment Collaboration
  25. Youth Internship Program Connect 2 Careers
  26. 401a Enrollment Communications
  27. San Diego County Continuity of Operations Plan
  28. Leveraging Tablet Technology for Process Automation
  29. Online Grant Cost-Effectiveness Calculator
  30. Automating Inspection Reports
  31. Honey Bee Protection Program
  32. Maintenance Gardner Outreach Pilot Program
  33. Certified Farmers’ Market Roadmap: Navigating the Journey
  34. Compliance TEAM approach: Maximizing Our Collective Impact
  35. Vector Control Response to Invasive Aedes Mosquitoes and Zika Virus
  36. Ranger Academy
  37. New Parks and Recreation Website
  38. Nature Explorer Program
  39. Pedestrian Gap Analysis
  40. Watershed Protection Mobile Application
  41. Multi-Year Road Resurfacing Program
  42. Expedited Hiring Event
  43. Online Document Library
  44. LUEG Enterprise Asset Management System (LEAMS)
  45. First 5 San Diego Offsite Oral Health Services
  46. Social Worker Initial Training Simulation Day
  47. Veteran Service Representative (VSR) Outreach Program
  48. Military & Veterans Resource Centers (MVRC)
  49. Child Welfare Services Continuous Quality Improvement Implementation
  50. Polinsky Children’s Center – 10-Day Temporary Shelter Care Facility Model
  51. Using Social Media to Promote SNAP/ CalFresh Participation
  52. Utilizing YouTube for Public Assistance Training
  53. Homelessness: Let’s Talk About It
  54. Commercially Sexually Exploited Children – Services in Detention Facilities
  55. Probation Behavioral Health Running Program 
  56. Vet-Connect Program
Yvette Urrea Moe is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact