CivicScan utilizes their knowledge of government and civic technology to build tools our clients use to be more effective in how they monitor and serve their local governments.

We keep our finger on the pulse of government so you our clients can put that information to work.


View PourSafe

Project |

Challenge | California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) licensing and enforcement information and limited tools are difficult to use, incomplete and inaccurate,

Description | We built the portal PourSafe to query current alcohol outlet licensing and enforcement data, compare various elements, and create and export maps, visualizations, and reports – all while using open data and public license.

Toolkit | Online querying and filtering, with multiple geopolitical boundaries. Exportable maps, charts, graphs, and data tables. Data and Tableau-workbooks downloadable.

Components| Data and mapping tools for advocacy organizations and local government elected officials, and other stakeholders to query, browse, and create exportable maps, charts, and data tables. Utilizing open Tableau Public interface.

LAPD Crime & Arrest Data
ABC Authorized v. Actual
ABC Enforcement Actions
DMV County DUI Rates

We launched PourSafe in 2017 to fill a gap in state government reporting and provide advocates and municipal electeds and staff with timely alcohol-outlet licensing and enforcement data.

PourSafe continues today with new leadership and seeks to expand offerings including additional geospatial analysis tools and exportable visualizations that help advocates in their storytelling.


Project | Form Follows Function, Review & Recommendations to Update Parking Ordinances in San Diego, California

Objective|Argue in favor of modifying the City of San Diego multi-family development code to remove excessive parking requirements in transit-rich areas.

Components|Included researching academic papers, model ordinances, existing city code, comparable west coast city ordinances, and financial impacts.

Project | San Diego Single Resident Occupancy (SRO) Business Scan

Research|Built database of known properties and parcel data, visited all sites, surveyed all sites and obtained bed counts, rental rates, ownership contact information, historical status, and other data. Final report of just over 100 properties included location photo and all relevant data points, as well as a collection of charts, graphs, and tables of various characteristics.

Components|Scan 250 potential SROs multifamily housing units within the city, verify demolished or repurposed buildings, to help city assess unknown inventory and status.

Project | Report TO City of San Diego Council Budget & Finance Committee | Likely Public-Services Cost and Service Improvements

Objective|Report detailing extensive negative cost impacts from Licensed Alcohol Outlets in highly concentrated areas. Additional focus on engaging stakeholders to work collaboratively, each being cognizant of the other’s concerns and interests.

Components|Extensive research on comparable communities, model ordinances, financial impacts, and positive community impacts. Illustrated a variety of crime, transportation, and community impacts. Presented best-practices programs from around the nation.

Launched a San Diego Alcohol Licensee Engagement (ALE) complimentary website with identical content.


Objective | We created an open-source project that automated the process of harvesting, identifying, and indexing content found in city council meeting documents like agendas and minutes. When topics our subscriber indicated they wanted to be notified about, we emailed alerts with links back to the source documents.

Components| We made our first foray in 2013 into learning from government documents. The eCitizens project was inspired by an earlier version of Councilmatic, and funded with a generous Prototype Fund grant from the John S and James L. Knight Foundation. This was a proof of concept open-source effort, branded as GovAlert for the alerting function pilot, was not intended then to be transformed into a commercially viable service.

The roots of CivicArchive were made possible through the generous support of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation.
We were honored to be selected from about 900 candidates by The Atlantic as one of the 12 Fresh Ideas for Transforming the Places We Live with Open Data.