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City Officials Celebrate 10 Years Of 311 Service

City Officials Celebrate 10 Years Of 311 Service (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

City Officials Celebrate 10 Years Of 311 Service (credit: Alex Silverman/WCBS 880)

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NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Say happy birthday to the city’s non-emergency hotline.

NYC311, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive government information and services center, has received nearly 160 million calls since its launch 10 years ago.

“For more than a decade, our administration has worked to implement technology solutions that help make real differences for New Yorkers,” said Mayor Michael Bloomberg. “For nearly all that time, NYC311 has been among the most successful examples of that work.”

The hotline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and provides New Yorkers with information on more than 4,000 topics regarding city government services.

Bloomberg applauded the 311 staff saying, “Day or night, rain or shine, these dedicated men and women have answered the call of their fellow New Yorkers,” — despite the nature of the calls.

“One caller wanted to know if he could claim his dog as a dependent on his taxes. Another wanted to know whether Medicaid would cover surgery for a cat. One called to find out who won ‘American Idol.’ And plenty have called to find out what to do about neighbors who walked around in plain view without any clothes on,” Bloomberg said, quipping, “they don’t call this the naked city for nothing.”

The most frequent calls over the years have come from people complaining about noise. The hotline has received 2.95 million noise complaints.

City officials said 158 million calls have come in since the non-emergency line was established.

“That means more people called 311 in the last 10 years than attended every single home game of every New York pro sports team put together,” Bloomberg said.

The hotline’s busiest day was on Jan. 27, 2011 during a big snowstorm with staff answering 276,827 calls.

During the week of superstorm Sandy, NYC311 received 1.3 million calls — about four times the usual average.

The Empire State Building will be lit yellow tonight in honor of NYC311′s anniversary.