National Technology Snapshot

A round-up of information technology news and events from each of the 50 states.

by / August 31, 1998

Decatur has selected Action Technologies to deliver Web-based workflow and work-management applications.


The Information Technology Group has increased the state's bandwidth to 512Kbps, speeding up Internet access for employees and external users alike.


The Phoenix Youth and Education Office has teamed with AT&T to offer Authenticity, a GIS-based software program, to Phoenix-area schools. It will allow students to learn about their immediate communities, work together and improve computer skills. Environmental Systems Research Institute developed the original mapping tool.


As of July 1, the Department of Information Services' Public School Computer Network has all school sites online.


Under the Department of Motor Vehicles' (DMV) Court Internet Project, eight rural-county courts are digitally linking with the DMV. When the links are complete, the state's 58 county courts will have direct access to the DMV's database.


The Community College and Occupational Education System has teamed with Cisco Systems to offer the Cisco Networking Academics program in community colleges and selected high schools. It is a Web-based curriculum that will teach students to design, build and maintain computer networks.


The Healthcare for Uninsured Kids and Youth plan has redesigned its Web site. Visitors to the site at can now find information about the plan, review frequently asked questions and download an application.


Gov. Thomas Carper has proposed a $10 million Law Enforcement Technology Fund. The fund's most important project will be a $6 million realtime crime-tracking and mapping system.


Broward Community College is using the Sony TriniCom 5100 SuperSite group videoconferencing system to make remedial and college-level courses accessible to high-school students throughout the county.


The Georgia Statewide Academic and Medical System was named the networking award winner in the Awarding Computer Excellence (ACE) Awards program. Sponsored by the Office of the Governor and corporate partners, the ACE Awards are designed to raise awareness of how information technology applications can benefit the state's residents.


The state has established a purchasing contract with Micron Electronics. It gives the state's staff options in computer systems purchases, including using the Internet to select and order what is needed.


One click on the unclaimed property page, and anyone can find out if the state has turned up any money belonging to them. State officials see it as another way the public can be given full access to information.


Will County's 911 Emergency Telephone Systems Board is deploying a computer-aided dispatch system that will incorporate integrated police and fire department records management. Printrak International is helping to develop the system.


With the Rapid Renewal System, residents are able to update vehicle registrations without visiting the Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The online service is offered at a nominal additional charge of 50 cents per vehicle.


Gov. Terry Branstad met with other governors and high-tech industry executives at a forum in Portland, Ore., to discuss the integration of education and technology.


Lenexa, a city of 34,000 people, went off paper cold turkey this year. The mayor and council members now view all briefing materials on laptops they bring to council meetings. It is called the Paperless Packet Project.

Nation's Cities Weekly


Biologists, researchers, students, professors and peregrine falcons are all benefiting from the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources' Web site. The site offers a host of valuable information, including detailed GIS maps.


Gov. Mike Foster announced that during the legislative session that ended June 1, $24.15 million was committed to technology in the classroom for grades K-12.


The University of Maine's Education Network is using an $850,000 national grant to fund 14 education-related information technology projects across the state.


The Fort Benning military base school system has linked students to the Internet's educational opportunities. SMAC Data Systems worked with the school system to deliver access to the Web, as well as educational and word processing software, to students in grades K-12.


The Executive Office of Public Safety and the Firearms Records Bureau were recognized with two national awards -- a Vision Award and a Vertical Market Solutions Award -- for their innovative approach in the use of information technology to track and retrieve data on gun sales and licenses.


Clinton Township has issued a strict written policy to govern employees' use of the Internet. All township personnel have to agree, in writing, not to use the Internet for pleasure, private business, or to send and receive messages that are harassing, sexist or obscene.


The Department of Revenue, Minnesota Care Tax Division, has implemented a Web filing system to manage the tax returns that hospitals and healthcare providers have to file each year. Developed by International Public Access Technologies (IPAT), the system also facilitates electronic payment of taxes due.


The Department of Education has implemented a statewide network that will allow schools and districts to communicate with each other and the department. The network links 152 school districts and 29 regional sites.


St. Louis police used a SAGEM Morpho automated fingerprint-identification system to nab a burglar responsible for several robberies at Washington University. The system allowed the officers to find a match based on only a partial print from one of the crime scenes.


The state's Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation has launched an ambitious GIS mapping project to track the distribution, condition and key limiting factors associated with elk habitat.


The small community of Aurora has jumped on the Internet with a significant booster project for local small businesses. The Aurora Cybermall Project features local businesses like Eberly and Sons Trucking and the Ken Harter Insurance Agency.


Despite local boosters' protests, the state was ranked near the bottom among the United States in the number of per-capita high-tech jobs available. The ranking was developed by the American Electronics Association.

San Jose Mercury News

New Hampshire

Rep. Martin T. Men joined forces with educators and high-tech businesses to develop and launch a workforce training program. The initiative is designed to fulfill the expected demand for more than 5,000 semiconductor technicians over the next four years.

New Jersey

The Pleasantville Police Department has implemented the MI3MS 3000 Plus system from Minolta Information Systems. The system will increase the efficiency of clerks and officers by making it easy to capture, store, retrieve and distribute images and documents regardless of their source.

New Mexico

In an effort to reduce costs and duplication of resources, CIO Jim Hall has established the La Nube Steering Committee. La Nube is Spanish for "the cloud," and it is hoped that the all-volunteer committee will help guide state agencies to more efficiently run state networks.

New York

Gov. George E. Pataki, joined by business executives and educators, opened the New York Wired Educational Solutions Center in Albany. It will be used by school districts to learn about and develop plans to incorporate technology into local schools.

North Carolina

North Carolina was one of the first states in the nation to receive a Technology Literacy Challenge Grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The $3.7 million will be used by local school districts to implement their technology plans.

North Dakota

The Mandan School District will receive $5 million for technology improvements, based on a levy passed by voters.

Bismarck Tribune


The University of Cincinnati has linked up with the state's Supercomputer Center (OSC) and the Federal Highway Administration to create safer guardrail designs. OSC is providing the latest in computer-simulation techniques to test new designs.


Gov. Frank Keating has signed a technology transfer bill (HB 2863) to allow universities to profit from their high-tech research. "This incentive will help put Oklahoma on an even playing field with areas like the Silicon Valley in California," said Keating.


The State Service Center for Geographic Information Systems is offering its services -- for a fee -- to federal, state and local agencies as well as nonprofit corporations and private businesses.


Commonwealth and Philadelphia police have linked their automated fingerprint identification systems. It is the first link based on National Institute of Standards and Technology requirements for the electronic transfer of biometrics information.

Rhode Island

Courts and other justice agencies will be digitally connected through a new system called Justice Link (J-Link). By 2000, J-Link will include automated calendars, reports, criminal histories, statistics and realtime responses to queries.

South Carolina

The state will soon have more variety in its choices for faster Internet connections, as companies like the Rock Hill Telephone and BellSouth step up to provide cable-modem and DSL connections to residents.

South Dakota

Gov. Bill Janklow awarded $78,183 in Library Services and Construction Act grants to seven libraries. The grants will facilitate upgrades in technology.


In Cookeville, the state's privacy laws are being challenged by a newspaper publisher who was refused when he asked to see the list of Internet sites city employees were visiting. A judge will hear the case in October.

Privacy Journal


The Department of Criminal Justice has installed a Periphonics interactive voice response system to support its automated victim-notification system. It allows over 40,000 registered victims to use a telephone to obtain information on inmates' custody status.


Gov. Mike Leavitt won support for the Western Governors' University (WGU) from his colleagues in other Western states. WGU will be based in Salt Lake City, rely on the Internet and offer degree and certificate programs from state-supported and private institutions throughout the West.


The Department of Education's Family and Educational Support Team had been hearing complaints about the MasterTrack software package used to process Medicaid claims. Realizing most of the problems were caused by aging hardware, the department instituted a purchase program to upgrade the offending systems.


Chesterfield County is using the Internet to streamline communications with builders, developers and residents. The new Web site provides access to information on pending construction plans.


Attorney General Christine Gregoire said a new law may help clear clogged e-mail boxes by making it illegal to use false or misleading information when sending an unsolicited commercial e-mail.

West Virginia

Gov. Cecil H. Underwood and Huntington Mayor Jean Dean announced that a newly formed IT company will invest $7 million to establish a corporate headquarters. The investment will result in 100 new high-tech industry jobs.


The Department of Revenue is moving to replace the 30 separate application systems it currently uses to manage tax and revenue administration with a single integrated resource-sharing system. IBM will assist in the changeover.


At Glenrock High School, 25 community volunteers joined teachers, students and administrators to pull 40,000 feet of cable to hook students to the Internet. The project was an activity under the national NetDay program.


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