Published: Jun 23, 2014 1:32 PM EDT
Updated: Jun 23, 2014 5:51 PM EDT

CAPE CORAL, Fla. - It's your money, and the city of Cape Coral is spending $20,000 dollars on a new app.  It's called Ping4Alerts! City leaders say this is the next step in communication and fighting crime.
If there's a police standoff near your home, perhaps a brush fire, or even some utility expansion project work, Ping4Alerts! will let you know about it in real time.

"We can provide citizens information on a missing child in the area. A missing adult, an event in their area. If the SWAT team happens to be doing something in the neighborhood," said Police Chief Bart Connelly.

With Ping4Alerts! police customize the area they want to target. Drive through that area, and you'll get an alert on your phone.

"About 65 percent of all of us have now smart phone technology, and Ping4Alerts! are going to be utilized in Cape Coral to have the specificity of health, safety alerts," said City Manager John Szerlag.

Just because you download the new app doesn't mean you're going to get alerts all the time. You can go into settings and customize your warnings.

Information sometimes attached to an alert allows you to send anonymous tips directly to detectives working a case.

"Anything that can help find missing children, alert you to any ongoing criminal activity, I think it's great," said Cape Coral resident Ron Glover.

"If you want to get alerts for a certain area, such as your child's school, you can pick the location you want and drop a pin.

You can also see what sex offenders are nearby. The app costs the city about $20,000 for a 3 year period.

The app doesn't cost you anything to download.

You can get it directly from your smart device, or find it at the city's website .