state and local level, the tasks are not as massive and technology is coming into the fold a little bit later.

But having said that, there are states and localities that do a very good job, even a better job than the federal government. And there are many who are way behind.

GT: Is there a role that the federal government can or should play in helping some of these municipalities or states which are a little bit further behind in deploying technology?

Davis: Well, we can help, but I think the marketplace will generally do a better job of that. As state and local governments get more responsibilities, they're going to have to go out into the marketplace and find out what is there.

GT: The federal government has historically set aside funds for automation, such as the 90 percent funding program for welfare systems. Will federal block grants have funds set aside for information technology?

Davis: There would be some incentives built into the system which would encourage states to be efficient in the way they do things. Really what we are talking about is sophistication and efficiency. The bottom line for government is that they should provide the best possible services at the lowest possible cost and you can't do that anymore without information technology.

There are plenty of models at the federal level they can learn from and some notable mistakes that they can learn from. A lot of the technologies that are employed at the federal level can be employed at the state level and even fine-tuned at the state and local levels.

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