Vallejo was once a thriving town with a Navy shipyard, Mare Island, that employed most of the City’s residents. In 1996, Mare Island was closed, which decreased revenue from property taxes, devastated local businesses, and left many residents without work. The U.S. financial crisis amplified the City’s budgetary problems, and the City filed for bankruptcy in 2008.

While the City Council recently passed the first structurally balanced budget in over a decade, the bankruptcy had a profound impact on the City’s ability to provide services to residents, the effects of which continue to be felt today. Many City services were cut including the police department, which experienced a 40% cut in staffing levels. Within the context of severely limited resources and reduced staff, Vallejo partnered with Code for America to use technology to improve public safety and increase community engagement.