Edmonton’s 311 service reducing hours, will no longer be available 24/7

A photo taken at an Edmonton City Council meeting on Jan. 22, 2019. Global News

In a few weeks, Edmontonians will no longer be able to access the 311 system 24 hours a day.

According to a post on the city’s website, the hours will transition to 12 hours a day on Feb. 2. The service will only be available between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., seven days a week, but will be closed on statutory holidays.

The city says the changes are being put in place by council to “deal with reduced revenues and to keep tax increases down for citizens.”

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The change to the hours are expected to bring a longer wait time, the city said, but layoffs are not expected.

“Savings will be realized through natural attrition and through scheduling efficiencies,” a news release said.

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311 is a non-emergency line that allows Edmontonians to report issues as well as receive information about city services like transit information, program registration and registering a bylaw complaint.

The city said that support for essential public safety and urgent bylaw calls will still be supported after hours. That includes things like downed trees, manhole covers that have been moved, sinkholes, a dog attack and parking concerns.

People who call 311 during off hours will be prompted to call a dedicated phone number for after-hour inquiries.

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Residents can also report issues through the city’s 311 app.

Global News has reached out to the city for comment. This story will be updated if we receive a response.

Since 2009, the city said 311 has received over 20 million inquires and answers around 5,000 calls a day.

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