SOURCE: RDS (Revenue Discovery Systems)

RDS (Revenue Discovery Systems)

January 18, 2011 10:00 ET

The City of Guntersville Receives Smart Government Honor From Revenue Discovery Systems

Increased Recycling Efforts and "Paperless" Practices in the Police Department Spark Community Involvement and Increased Savings for the City

BIRMINGHAM, AL--(Marketwire - January 18, 2011) - Revenue Discovery Systems (RDS) announced today that its final 2010 Smart Government Award (SGA) recipient in the Small Municipality category is the City of Guntersville, Ala. Under the leadership and direction of Mayor Robert L. Hembree, Jr., the city expanded recycling collection efforts, implemented "paperless" practices in the police department, and motivated community members to contribute to litter prevention among other cleanup efforts.

RDS is a division of PRA Government Services, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Portfolio Recovery Associates, Inc. (NASDAQ: PRAA). For more information, please visit www.revds.com.

Smart Government Awards, sponsored by RDS since 2009, recognize municipalities, counties, and state agencies that are taking innovative steps to enhance growth, create cost savings and provide environmental benefits. The Small Municipality category is for municipalities with a population of 15,000 or less.

City of Guntersville officials made recycling and waste reduction a priority, RDS noted. Existing environmental efforts were further enhanced in a cost effective manner through revised procedures and practices. Many recycling programs have been in place for some time, including the collection of paper, beverage glass, aluminum cans, tin/steel cans, plastics, cardboard, motor oil, and scrap metal. Supporting organizations have partnered with the city, including the Guntersville City Tree Commission, City Horticulturist, the Tennessee Valley Authority, and Marshall County People Against a Littered State. 

The city also stepped up efforts with the "Recycling Away From Home" program by incorporating recycling containers into the Downtown Streetscape Renovation and placing containers along 10 miles of walking trails, recreation venues, senior centers, and near Town Hall. The community is proud to be one of the first cities in north Alabama to establish "litter-free events" in city venues. This effort has dramatically lowered the amount of city overtime through community volunteers who serve as the "Litter Patrol" during these events.

"These efforts are the living work of the Smart Government Awards mission," said Kennon Walthall, group chief operating officer and senior vice president, Operations, PRA Government Services, LLC. "They are touching so many areas of environmental stewardship, cost reduction, and strong leadership. It's an honor to present the Smart Government Award to the City of Guntersville and its officials."

Keep America Beautiful and the Philip Morris Corporation awarded the City of Guntersville grant money to implement the "No Ifs, Cans or Butts" campaign for the Cigarette Litter Prevention Program. The program focuses on reducing cigarette litter at the entrances of city buildings and park and recreation areas of the community. Since the program's start, there is a visible decrease in cigarettes seen throughout the city.

Before a paperless initiative was established, all police department citations and reports were handwritten and later, completed electronically by data entry personnel. The city received a grant from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs for laptops and supporting software, allowing the officers more time to patrol, less time entering data and less cost for paper storage. The department has transitioned from 100 percent paper to 100 percent paperless.

The nominations for several categories were approved and awarded by a committee comprised of educators, a policy researcher, an environmental conservationist, and a retired municipal employee. Those committee members included: Dr. Don-Terry Veal, executive director of the Center for Governmental Services, Auburn University; Tommy Pow, program manager at the University of Alabama College of Continuing Studies; Jim Williams, executive director of the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama; Mike Moore, former revenue officer for the City of Opelika; and Adam Snyder, executive director for Conservation Alabama. 

About the Smart Government Awards:
The Smart Government Awards were developed by RDS to recognize innovative governments and efficient programs in Alabama. The Approval Committee evaluated nominees based on efforts to enhance growth and reduce waste in spending, time and resources, particularly in regards to the environment.

About RDS:
Based in Birmingham, Ala., RDS is a government services company providing revenue enhancement support services to state and local government in the areas of tax administration, revenue discovery & recovery, and compliance audit examination.

Each year, RDS processes billions of dollars in business taxes, licenses and fees and has simultaneously discovered and recovered millions in unpaid revenues. For 30 years, RDS has been committed to delivering government solutions based on outstanding value, competitive pricing, exceptional customer service and compliance with the highest professional standards. RDS currently provides tax administration services for more than 450 state and local government clients and manages 760 professional service contracts.

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