E-government? So far it's mostly talk, researcher says

E-government? So far it's mostly talk, researcher says

MAY 11'When it comes to online government and electronic service to citizens, the federal government isn't putting its money where its mouth is. That's according to Fed Sources president Tom Hewitt, who spoke during the McLean, Va., research firm's annual Outlook conference yesterday.

The numbers prove his assertion, said Hewitt, a longtime federal market watcher. Budgets for maintenance of legacy systems will rise by nearly 17 percent in fiscal 2001, he said, while budgets for new information technology initiatives will rise only 1.5 percent.

'This is the most boring budget I've ever seen,' Hewitt said. 'There's no leader pushing a technology-based budget.' Agency chief information officers aren't yet fulfilling their roles, industry is too timid to assert itself on the need for innovation, and members of Congress mostly want to say no to initiatives, Hewitt said.

'That's not the way the new economy is going,' he added.

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