Lexington's iPhone app will help residents report problems

That black panther that some northside residents claimed to have seen? Now if they spot it, they can take a picture of that sucker with their iPhone and report it to city hall. Same goes for the neighbor's Herbie that has sat on the curb for days.

Lexington now has its own iPhone "app," or application, "Lexington 311." Mayor Jim Newberry unveiled it Thursday at the Creative Cities Summit.

Using the app, residents may take a photo of a problem and send a report to LexCall, the city's one-stop call center. The app has categories for illegal activity, abandoned vehicles, illegal dumping, broken streetlights, potholes, graffiti, animal control, health/safety hazards and "other."

LexCall will enter a work order to get the problem fixed, city spokeswoman Susan Straub said.

"It will enable citizens to participate in resolving our problems more easily," Newberry said.

The city paid about $1,400 to have the West Coast company Urban Anomaly develop the app based on a model it had used in other cities, Straub said.

The app was free as of Thursday but eventually will cost 99 cents.