EGG HARBOR CITY - The city is asking residents to sign up to receive its emergency and other outreach messages through a service called Blackboard Connect, via voice or text messages to home or cell phones, or via email messages.

Blackboard Connect has been used by officials to communicate with residents for several years, said Mayor Lisa Jiampetti. Now the service has been expanded, and residents can choose the language they prefer, along with a favored mode of communication.

About 1,600 publicly available primary residential and business phones in Egg Harbor City were initially loaded into the system, Jiampetti said, but over the years numbers have changed or been eliminated. Many landlines have been replaced by cell phone numbers that the city cannot access unless residents provide them, Jiampetti said.

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She estimated there should be at least 2,400 accounts in the system, to cover every residence and business in town.

See to sign up. Scroll down to "Sign Up Now - Services By Blackboard Connect" toward the bottom of the page on the right, then sign in as a new user. The service does not share numbers with any other entity, it stresses in its materials.

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