No to Real ID

Maine's Senate and House voted nearly unanimously in late January 2007 to approve a joint resolution urging Congress and the President to repeal the Real ID Act of 2005.

Passage of the resolution makes Maine the first state in the country to do so. Real ID requires states to turn their drivers' licenses into national ID cards that will be part of a 50-state shared database.

Maine lawmakers said the state will refuse to implement the terms of the Real ID Act, and during floor debate in both legislative chambers, lawmakers cited the cost to Maine taxpayers of approximately $185 million. Lawmakers also expressed serious concerns about the privacy issues raised by the Real ID Act. -- Maine Legislature

Open Posting

No state is as open as it could be in informing the public about the presence of convicted sex offenders in their neighborhoods, according to new University of Florida research.

States were ranked on a scale of one to seven, with one being "completely closed" and seven being "completely open." Indiana rated a five, "somewhat open." Though no state received a rating of one, Hawaii, Nebraska and South Dakota scored a two and were described as "mostly closed."

Whether sex offender data "had to be posted" or was simply allowed to be posted was one of the four subcategories making up the overall rating. States also were rated on the type of personal information available about an offender, agency procedures relating to sex offenders and sex offender classification. -- University of Florida

Critical Communication

Spending by U.S. state and local governments on communications technology for first responders will rise from $3.2 billion in 2006 to $4.4 billion by 2011 as public safety agencies look for ways to collaborate and share information during critical situations, according to a Datamonitor survey.

Say Cheese!

Eleven percent of respondents to a Tabblo survey indicated they have more than 10,000 digital photos, while 27 percent -- the largest group of respondents -- have between 1,001 and 5,000 digital photos. If this data is extrapolated to the general public, it translates into Americans having almost 500 billion digital photos.

On the Prowl

Yahoo HotJobs surveyed more than 5,000 U.S. workers and found that nearly half plan to search for a new job in 2007. That number only represents those who will actively look. Another two-thirds of currently employed respondents said they may not actively seek out a new job, but that they would be open to one if the right opportunity presented itself.

Karen Stewartson  |  Managing Editor
Jessica Jones, Contributing Writer  |  Contributing Writer