Major programs within Houston e-gov

Voice over IP telephony. The city plans to develop an IP telephony system that digitizes a user's voice and assembles the digital data into discrete voice packets for transport across Houston's data network. It will converge data, voice and video onto a single network.

SimHouston. More than 71,000 Houstonians are using SimHouston, a free e-mail, Internet and desktop software suite. City residents access the program through a Houston library card.

E-government initiatives. The city Web site, at www.cityofhouston.gov, offers five e-government services: online auctions, building permits, plat submittal, online tee times for the city's municipal golf course and online traffic ticket payment.

Upgraded enterprise resource planning system. The system Houston now uses for payroll and other administrative tasks is a labor-intensive one the city acquired in the late 1980s. The new ERP system will be online, CIO Richard Lewis said.

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