Douglas Omaha Technology Commission
Champion since 2023
The City of Omaha is the nation's 39th largest city spanning both rural and urban communities in Douglas County Nebraska. Omaha is also home to the country's largest residential lead Superfund site. The Omaha Lead Superfund Site consists of approximately 27 square miles of property within the metro area of Omaha. Soils across a broad swath of the city were contaminated with lead over more than a century, primarily from the operation of a major lead smelter situated along the west bank of the Missouri River, which sent particulate lead aloft from its smokestacks and deposited it on the landscape. Other sources of lead contamination at the site included a former paint manufacturer, former lead battery plant, and the decay of lead-based paint from homes and other structures.
A historic cooperative agreement between the City of Omaha and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) required day-to-day management of the cleanup effort by the City of Omaha to be tracked and shared with the community, EPA, and education outreach programs. The city's IT partner, Douglas Omaha Technology Commission in partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS) built a solution to securely manage, store, and share information. AWS was chosen to meet strict security requirements with industry leading selection of managed services. The serverless services such as AWS Cloudformation, AWS Lambda, Amazon API Gateway, AWS WAF, Amazon Cloudfront, Amazon S3, Amazon Aurora, AWS Security Hub, and AWS Control Tower allowed the team to build a cost effective solution and focus on delivering business value faster.
The three core areas managed by the AWS solution include soil, paint, and dust contamination. The City of Omaha lead office manages soil and paint, while the Douglas County Health Department oversees the dust program. The city and the county utilize a shared application for management of data collected by field staff built on top of secure serverless APIs. The scalability of AWS Lambda saves money by paying for compute as needed and provides capacity as community outreach programs drive traffic to public websites consuming the serverless APIs. Citizens can access properties to review the data that has been collected by the program and raise awareness of lead hazards in the community. The sudden spikes of traffic are driven by social media, local news, and marketing campaigns by the City of Omaha to make our community clean and safe.
What is the AWS State and Local Government Champions Program?
The AWS State and Local Government Champions program recognizes, celebrates, and supports organizations driving digital transformation with cloud computing. The purpose of the program is to acknowledge customers that have used AWS products and services in innovative ways to improve the service to their communities. The organizations selected to receive this award share the mission to transform and advance state and local government to better serve their constituents. This community will provide relatable stories for other state and local government customers to reference as they think about their own digital transformation journey.