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editorial

Municipal services on wheels with ‘City Hall To Go’

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Kids have ice cream trucks. Adults, with their more refined tastes, now have their own rolling treat: city paperwork. As of last week, Boston residents can access municipal services at the new “City Hall To Go” truck, which will rotate through city neighborhoods at least three days a week. It’s an innovation that could prove convenient for the public — and shows the same eye toward flexibility and experimentation that’s evident in the city’s embrace of food trucks.

Originally a Boston Police SWAT vehicle, the eye-catching red City Hall on wheels will let residents pay or dispute parking tickets, request birth certificates, or pay property taxes, as well as other chores. The services to be offered were determined through surveys. So were the hours, which include staying open until 7 p.m. on weeknights. Bilingual nights will be held regularly. The fourth Tuesday of every month, residents can tweet @CityHallToGo to vote on their preferred truck location for that day.

Efforts to move city services into neighborhood offices have met with mixed results in the past. But if City Hall To Go doesn’t prove successful, the truck can be repainted and put to some other use (Tacos, anyone?). And if the initiative does work, it’ll be a novel advertisement for how modern Boston rolls.

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