A Green Bay alderman wants to make it easier for the public to report rat sightings to the city. The idea is to create a new web page to scientifically attack the city’s rat problem.

For years Ed Schmude has had a problem with rats at his west side Green Bay home.

“Big issue, lots of rats around,” said Schmude.

He uses traps and poison to control their numbers and at times calls city hall to file a complaint.

“When I had that big pond there, you could just see them there,” Schmude said.

Now Alderman Brian Johnson wants to make that process easier for residents, proposing the city create a web page on its website where rat sightings could be reported electronically.

“So, we can scientifically start to gather data and use that for ways to identify solutions that are more appropriate for the nature of the problem we have right now,” Johnson said.

Johnson says right now when complaints are made, they are tracked by city inspectors on an internal map. He says gathering complaints online – would speed up the process and allow staff to better analyze the data.

“You can make maps with it, you can use it to identify problem areas within the city,” Johnson said. “What we’re looking for is a more scientific way to approach this problem.”

County Supervisor Bernie Erickson says the idea has merit – based on the complaints he’s heard from his constituents. It’s the reason he keeps handing out county-funded rat traps.

“I think anything we do is a good tool,” Erickson said. “You can identify all the areas you want, but you have to be proactive and do something about it.”

Johnson says creating the portal will allow staff to develop better solutions to the rat problem that homeowners like Schmude deals with every day.

“They like to go down the fence line you know, that’s where you put that cake stuff, it kills them,” Schmude said.

City officials says they continue to do neighborhood sweeps to educate residents on ways to mitigate the problem. Johnson’s proposal goes before City Council this week.