GT December 2008 Cover December 2008 Government Technology Cover

Most of the projects highlighted here were selected because they involved strategies many state and local governments are still deciding whether or not to try. Industry observers are watching for the success or failure of the Indiana Family and Social Services Administration's (FSSA) attempt to outsource food stamp eligibility. All states are seeking ways to cut Medicaid costs, making Tennessee's Medicaid fraud analytics process critical to watch. Most state and local governments are investigating best practices for redacting Social Security numbers from online public documents. The Richmond (Va.) Police Department's (RPD) crime-predicting system will certainly lead to clones elsewhere if it further reduces crime, and the District of Columbia's "stock portfolio" approach to IT project management is already making waves.

A Step Ahead of Crime

During 2008, many government IT observers took special notice of an analytics-based tool for predicting crimes that the RPD developed.

The system, which gives police a color-coded map showing where crime is likely to be most intense, features a new function for 2008 that classifies the crime it measures into six categories -- burglary, robbery, auto theft, theft from auto, violent crime and other larceny.

"If you're predicting increased robbery activity versus auto theft or a burglary, we have different tactics to prevent those types of crimes," said Stephen Hollifield, information systems manager for the RPD.

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Andy Opsahl  | 

Andy Opsahl is a former writer and features editor for Government Technology magazine.