Pay.gov rings up its first $1b

Pay.gov rings up its first $1b

In less than a year of operating its Pay.gov portal, the Treasury Department's Financial Management Service has collected $1 billion in fees, fines, leases, taxes and other electronic payments from citizens and businesses thorough the portal.

The 24-hour portal accepts payments for 340 agencies. Users complete Web forms, then direct the payments electronically from their bank accounts.

Transactions that used to require trips to agency offices, lots of paperwork, lockboxes and bank automated clearinghouse systems are now handled without paper, said Brett Smith, FMS' acting director of applied technology.

'It starts digital and ends digital,' Smith said. FMS converts agencies' paper forms into Extensible Markup Language and Hypertext Markup Language for Web use. And Pay.gov absorbs all costs directly tied to each agency's collection processes.

FMS built the portal with the capacity to handle 80 million transactions totaling $125 billion a year. Written in Java, the site's application prevents duplicate payments and lets agency financial officials hyperlink to another agency's system.

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