The responsibilities of state and local government aren’t always glamorous; in fact, sometimes they are downright dirty, difficult or dangerous. But it’s those roles that keep communities thriving, and technology is helping advance — and in some cases clean up — these important core functions.

Here’s how tech is transforming some of government’s grittiest tasks.

Road Maintenance: Is automation the future of road maintenance?

Fleet Management: A local police department in Minnesota is deploying technology that puts any unauthorized mobile device onboard the vehicle into a blocked mode when the vehicle is moving at 1 mph or higher.

Water and SewerAll water is just the same H2O recycled over and over.

Restaurant Inspection: Cities and counties turn to social media and mobile apps to spread restaurant inspection information.

Graffiti Removal: Graffiti databases and reporting apps help cities clean up after taggers.

Building Inspection: Spotting energy loss with thermographic cameras.

Roadkill Prevention: Colorado takes technology traditionally used for perimeter security at prisons and airports, and uses it for detecting wildlife along highways and warning drivers in real time.

Crime Scene Investigation: Training gives first responders an edge when dealing hazardous materials.

Snow Removal: The Dragon breathes diesel fire to melt snow, filter it and send it retreating into storm drains.

Waste Management: Waste collectors find ways to optimize collection routes and reduce emissions.

Corrections: Tightening prison security with biometrics.

Pest Mitigation: GPS helps the Florida Keys keep the mosquito population in check.