THE 50 STATES<@VM>THE 50 STATES: Maryland to Wyoming


SMART COPS. The Public Safety Department is combining a dispatch records management system and mobile computing software from SmartCop Inc. of Pensacola, Fla., to link state highway patrol units, police departments and county sheriff's offices wirelessly. Officers use wireless data transmission to run record checks and retrieve incident reports at their vehicles.


E-MAIL ALERTS. The Emergency Services Division won an award for 'Best State Disaster Internet Message Providers' from the Disaster Center, a research group based in Anchorage. Directed by network administrator Bryan Fisher, the site, at, was lauded for providing daily disaster situation reports by e-mail to interested citizens.


PAPER JAM. Paper was a problem for Tempe. Officials tried to store the city's million paper records in an off-site storage facility, but that proved cumbersome, city officials said.
Eight departments, including the Tempe police and fire departments, adopted eB document management software from Altris Software Inc. of San Diego to convert the paper records into an electronic format. The eB suite works with Microsoft Corp. products, including Windows 9x/2000/NT, Transaction Server and Message Queue Server.


NOW ON DVD. Arkansas is working with ImageEntry Inc. of London, Ky., to convert state income and sales and use tax returns into digital images. The company stores these returns electronically on CD and DVD at its new facility in Brinkley. Since the state adopted the system, Tax Department officials say they resolve taxpayer problems in minutes instead of days.


CITYVIEW SUITE. Municipal Software Corp. of Vancouver, British Columbia, won contracts with the city and county of Denver valued at $726,500. The company will provide Denver's Building Permit Center and Wastewater Management Department with its CityView software, which tracks permits and property assessment data.


NINE ONLINE. Gov. Gray Davis announced that nine California nonprofit organizations and schools will share a total of $6.8 million in state and federal grants for rural electronic commerce. Davis said the grants will increase Internet connectivity for farms, small businesses and community centers.


LITERARY ICON. The state launched an online digital library in April. The Connecticut Digital Library, or iCONN, at provides residents and businesses with access to 300 library collections. The state library system administers the online service in conjunction with the Higher Education Department.


WEB TRAFFIC. The Motor Vehicles Department has a new Web site, at, where residents can find out about driver's licenses, vehicle titling, license suspensions and revocations and vehicle inspections. The Cyberspace Service Center also provides traffic reports and access to the statewide traffic camera network with live visuals of the state's most frequently used intersections.


FINANCIAL SLAP. The city government produces financial management information through cumbersome, manual processes and the extraordinary efforts of a few key employees because its systems are incomplete, according to the congressional General Accounting Office.

GAO issued a report in April scolding district officials for failing to complete their financial management system.

The office said two components of the new core general ledger System of Accounting and Reporting have not been fully implemented. The personnel and payroll, procurement and tax systems that feed into SOAR are incomplete and lack electronic interfaces, GAO said. And, the report said, the city may abandon its $13 million personnel and payroll system altogether.


MY TAXES. The Revenue Department unveiled its new online business tax filing services at The site is protected by Secure Sockets Layer encryption and requires a user identification and password.

Businesses and individuals now can use the site to complete an electronic version of a key form, the Application to Collect and/or Report Tax in Florida.


LET'S MAKE A DEAL. The Technology Authority has requested proposals on behalf of the Teachers' Retirement System for a new pension administration and accounting system. It will include optical imaging capabilities, workflow management tools and data conversion applications.


THEORY INTO ACTION. The Labor and Industrial Relations Department awarded a $1.3 million contract to AppliedTheory Corp. of New York. The company will install its One Stop Operating System software, which will help state employment agencies share information online and improve state compliance with the federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998.

What's up in your agency?
For governments east of the Mississippi, call 301-650-2225 or e-mail [email protected].
For those west, call 301-650-2238 or e-mail [email protected].


JAILHOUSE HACK. The Correction Board found prison inmates had taken control of some of the state's computer systems and diverted delivery of convict-manufactured furniture to their families and friends.

The board launched a management review of the Correctional Industries prison program, which manufactures office furniture for state agencies.


PALMS OF THEIR HANDS. Consolidated High School District 230 of Orland Park has equipped nearly 1,700 students and 65 teachers with handheld computers from Palm Inc. of Santa Clara, Calif. The students and teachers now can wirelessly print their assignments and other documents to infrared-equipped printers using the PrintBoy Deluxe utility from Bachmann Software and Services LLC of Sparta, N.J.


WASTE NOT, WANT NOT. The Commerce Department's Energy Policy Division has posted information online about where residents and businesses can market their recyclable waste.

The Indiana Recyclable Materials Market Directory Online at provides a directory of companies that buy recyclable materials.


FORGET BERMUDA, VACATION HERE. The Economic Development Department's Tourism Division sells advertisements on the Accommodations and Attractions pages of its Web site. It charges $600 for a six-month ad during the March-to-August high season and $400 during the September-to-February off-season. Ads can be updated once every three months. The division reports ad activity to each advertiser every six months. A recent visit to the site showed a handful of ads for hotel chains and Iowa cities, but much of the available ad space was vacant.


DEATH BECOMES IT. The Health and Environment Department will request proposals for new death registration software for the state's Vital Statistics Integrated Information System. The system registers and tracks births, deaths, marriages and divorces.

Housed on an IBM AS/400 server, the system is long overdue for an upgrade, department officials said.


DEADLY DELAY. The OxyContin Task Force, which was appointed by Gov. Paul Patton to help control abuse of the powerful prescription painkiller, likely will recommend improvements to a state system that tracks controlled substances.

OxyContin abuse has caused several overdose deaths, State Police Lt. Kevin Payne said. The Kentucky All Schedule Prescription Electronic Reporting System (KASPER) tracks prescription drug distribution, but because it reports only after a 25- to 30-day lag, a person could obtain and fill multiple prescriptions from different doctors without attracting notice for a while. Upgrading KASPER so it would produce reports quickly would cost about $5 million annually, officials estimated.


E-RATE FUMBLE. Last December, the New Orleans school district applied for a $29 million grant from the Federal Communications Commission's E-Rate program, which subsidizes school Internet programs. Last month, FCC officials rejected the grant request.

FCC said the district failed to show it has the proper Internet hardware or software and provided faulty budget information. Without the grant, the district's plan to put five Web-connected PCs in every classroom is expected to fall apart.


EASY MONEY. The Treasurer's Office will initiate an automated management information system by July 1 that will let residents and businesses pay electronically for state goods and services. Maine has contracted with Peoples Heritage Bank of Portland for funds processing.MARYLAND

SMART MOVE. The state is contracting with Cubic Transportation Systems Inc. of San Diego for $21.9 million for a universal smart card system for its local and commuter buses and Baltimore's subway system. Riders will be able to use the cards by 2003.


HITS AND HISTORY. The Commonwealth's Web site, at, is receiving nearly 40 million file requests a month, according to the state's latest statistics.

The site has links to more than 80 state agencies and even boasts a brief history of itself. Massachusetts started developing the site in late 1994 and launched its first electronic-commerce application for motor vehicle registration in August 1996.


PAY TO PLAY. Kent County has hired the National Information Consortium of Overland Park, Kan., to build an improved Web portal. The county will pay a start-up fee of $208,000 and an annual maintenance charge of $328,000.


SMART ROADS. The Transportation Department has awarded a $3.4 million contract to Addco Inc. of St. Paul for an intelligent transportation system to serve Rochester and Mankato.

The ITS project will rely on Addco's Virtual Transportation Operation Center software to coordinate the system's components and subsystems, including dynamic signs, in-vehicle data systems, automated bridge de-icers and machine vision systems.


MEGABYTES AND MAGNOLIAS. The Information Technology Services Department chose a team led by IBM Corp. for the first phase of its new state enterprise portal. The initial phase of the work, which will include planning the portal and creating applications, could cost up to $5 million; state officials now are negotiating details of the contract.


SHOW-ME SYSTEMS. Chief information officer Gerry Wethington and his team at the Information Technology Office plan to work with industry to develop a request for proposals for the state's electronic-government project.

The system will provide a central integration point for all of the state's legacy systems, Wethington said. Officials first expected $21 million of funding from the Legislature for the project. The CIO said he now expects to award a contract in October that will be in the $3 million range.


E-LAW. Gov. Judy Martz signed S 405 this spring, a bill that gives the Administration Department specific responsibility for establishing an electronic point of entry to state services at Martz said the law reflects her administration's commitment to making access to state services more convenient for residents and businesses.


NEW LIBRARIES. Ten communities in Nebraska are considering building or remodeling libraries, thanks in part to the blossoming of the Internet, said Richard Miller, director of development for the Nebraska Library Commission. Some towns still use early 20th century buildings donated by industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. 'Trying to wire some of these places is almost impossible,' Miller said.


ONLINE FINES. Las Vegas' Information Technologies Department deployed E-Parking Ticket, an online service that lets citizens pay their parking tickets via the city Web site, at

The site uses Microsoft Active Server Pages and Internet Information Server. It accepts parking fines by credit card. The payments are securely transmitted by VeriSign Inc. of Mountain View, Calif., and processed using the services of CyberCash Inc. of Reston, Va.


OLD TOWN. NEW ADDRESS. West Windsor Township, founded in 1797, has a new Web site, at Residents use it to find out about trash collection schedules, senior centers, parks and recreation facilities and programs, emergency management services, sewer charges and property taxes. They can also find many municipal forms and applications online. The township plans to add historical information and a current events page to the site.


IT ADS UP. The Travel and Tourism Division sells advertisements on its Web site through a local ad agency at annual rates varying from $80 for a simple directory listing to $5,000 for a large ad on the opening page of the site.

For $395, an advertiser can post a photo and 60 words of copy. The site has about 11,000 advertisers, most for the lower-cost ads.


TAKE THE A TRAIN. Westchester County has signed a three-year contract for $120,000 with Enterprise Training Solutions Inc. of Ardsley for online training of information technology employees.


UP PERISCOPE. The Public Employees Retirement Association requested proposals for a company to manage the Public Employee Retirement Information System, a client-server system that runs on a Windows NT platform. The winning company will replace PERIS' legacy AS/400 hardware.


VIRTUAL PAY. The state has contracted with Innovate E-Commerce Inc. of Pittsburgh for an electronic payment system. The state is using the company's Virtual-Pay system for its Common Payment Service. The service supports about 15 applications including a lobbyist registration system, tuition and registration systems for state-affiliated colleges and universities, a vessel registration renewal system and a permit issuance system for the Agriculture Department.

Gov. John Hoeven

HOEVEN CAN'T WAIT. Gov. John Hoeven recently applauded state legislators for passing laws that help integrate technology in classrooms, universities and government agencies throughout the state. He gave special kudos to the statewide network, which will transmit data, video and voice over a broadband connection to all high schools and libraries in North Dakota in the next two years. 'We are no longer bound by the limits of geography and distance,' Hoeven said.


BUCKEYE SITE. The state unveiled its new Web portal, at, during the Intergovernmental Technology Conference held in Columbus in April.

Residents can register cars and boats via the site, as well as pay their taxes and reserve accommodations at state parks. The portal features five categories on its front page that guide users to appropriate services: resident, business, visitor, state employee and government.
The retooled site is part of the Electronic Government Initiative led by the Governor's Council on Electronic Commerce.


TEACHER OF THE YEAR. Oklahoma's Teacher of the Year, Talita DeNegri, cautioned in a newspaper column that technology is not the only answer to classroom problems: 'No matter how much technology a school has, if the students are not given the opportunity to discover life's principles to become contributing members of society, then we as educational leaders have faltered in our responsibility.'


SUITE LOWDOWN. Last year the controller's office used TeamSurvey software from Iemagine Inc. of Chicago, an application service provider, in a pilot project for employee surveys. Employees could complete the surveys from any PC with an Internet browser. TeamSurvey is one module in Iemagine's Rent & Ready Instant Webware suite.


MOVING ON UP TO THE EAST SIDE. Former San Diego deputy city manager and chief information officer Dianah Neff has been appointed chief information officer for Philadelphia.

Neff served as CIO for 15 months in San Diego and was previously the CIO for Bellevue, Wash.


ETHICALLY SPEAKING. The Ethics Commission has launched an interactive training course at The first course offered is an introduction to the state's ethics policies. It covers conflicts of interest, impropriety, recusal, moonlighting and other topics.


ONE IN FOUR. The state received $3.9 million in grants for a computer crime investigations law enforcement center. The center will be located in Columbia and will be responsible for investigating bank and utility fraud, child pornography and identity theft.

The State Law Enforcement Division, FBI and U.S. Secret Service will operate the center. The center is the fourth of its kind in the country. Other centers are located in New York, California and Texas.


WIRED TO TEST. Education Secretary Ray Christensen announced last month that South Dakota will begin testing students online by next spring. All South Dakota third-, sixth- and 10th-graders will be tested in math, science, language and social studies over the educational computer network set up by the state's 'Wiring the Schools' project. Each classroom in South Dakota is connected to the statewide data network. According to Christensen, South Dakota is the only state equipped for statewide online testing.


TRUST ME WITH YOUR CAR. The Finance and Administration Department requested proposals on behalf of the Safety Department for the design, construction and implementation of the Title and Registration User's System.

TRUST will replace legacy title and registration systems that have 'become slow, backlogged and labor-intensive,' the state said. Tennessee expects to award a three-year contract in August for software, hardware, training and support.


TRAFFIC TRAP MAP. Houston TransStar, an agency that oversees the planning, design and maintenance of more than 15,000 miles of roads in and around Houston, is working with Applied Technological Services Inc. of Dallas to build a geographic information system on the TransStar Web site, at The GIS, which will be built in GeoMedia WebMap from Intergraph Corp. of Huntsville, Ala., will allow other agencies to see where road construction and repairs are planned for the area.


VOTE DISPUTE. Rep. Patrice Arent is pushing a proposal that would put roll call votes on the legislature's Web site at A click of a button would show each legislator's voting history.

Rep. David Ure disagrees with Arent. He said that some of his House colleagues rely too much on technology, voting on bills based only on the number of e-mails they receive from constituents.
Representatives' voting histories are available online now, but finding them requires a complicated search through thousands of votes.


THAT'S THE TICKET. The Judicial Bureau is using the 1mage document management system from 1mage Software Inc. of Englewood, Colo., to scan, index and cross-reference traffic tickets and case documents with the state's Traffic Case Management System. The system gives the bureau access to files over the state's network.


MOVING UP HILL. Bernard D. Hill has been appointed chief information officer for the Transportation Department.

Hill previously served as CIO for the Corrections Department. From 1986 to 1998 he was the system development manager for the University of Virginia. And from 1980 to 1986 he was the data processing manager for the state Planning and Budget Department.


THREE-STEP PROGRAM. Washington offers citizens a three-step process to apply for a digital certificate online at Visitors to the site determine the level of certificate they need'standard, medium or high. They apply for a certificate from Digital Signature Trust Co. of Salt Lake City over a secure link to the company's Web site. After they receive their digital certificate in the mail, they open a myTransact account with Washington, which permits them to conduct secure, legally binding online transactions with the state.


BY THE BOOK. The Milwaukee Public Library and 11 of the state's 17 library systems are or soon will be distributing electronic books using the services of netLibrary Inc. of Boulder, Colo.

The Wisconsin Public Library Consortium used a $189,000 state grant to set up the e-book service, which provides 6,000 volumes that can be checked out for 24 hours at a time.


JUST THE FACTS, PLEASE. The state received final approval from the federal Children's Bureau in April for its Families and Children Tracking System. West Virginia contracted with Deloitte Consulting of New York for the system.


LICENSE RENEWAL. The Transportation Department is considering issuing a request for proposals for a new contract for its digitized driver's license system.

The DOT's contract with Polaroid Corp. of Cambridge, Mass., will expire in September. The pact is valued at about $3.75 million for three years.


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