Andrew Westrope

Staff Writer


Andrew Westrope is a staff writer for Government Technology. Before that, he was a reporter and editor at community newspapers for seven years. He has a Bachelor’s degree in physiology from Michigan State University and lives in Northern California.

October 14, 2019

Gov Tech Startup Neighborly Runs Out of Money to Pay Workers

Absent funding, a San Francisco-based startup’s meandering, seven-year history courting various technologies — from bond-sale software to blockchain to broadband networks — has reached an impasse.

October 11, 2019

CivicPlus Acquires 311 Software Company SeeClickFix

CivicPlus has added another competitor to its ever-expanding suite of integrated communications software in SeeClickFix, a tool that has offered citizens ways to use mobile devices to report issues à la 311.

October 10, 2019

Axon Fights Deepfakes with New Body Cams, Debuts RMS

New tools from one of the nation’s top police-tech companies, a new body camera and a cloud-based RMS, debuted last month at several police departments in California trying to address a few 21st-century concerns.

October 2, 2019

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Working on Crime Info App

A new mobile app under development by the department and MobilePD proposes to notify residents about suspects in their area in real time, and eventually offer live chat and crime-reporting features.

October 1, 2019

Cybersecurity and Democracy Collide: Locking Down Elections

The virtual guarantee of foreign meddling in the 2020 election poses a challenge to state and local officials, IT staff included, to protect American democracy. Experts say the keys to success will be cybersecurity, paper trails, risk-limiting audits and inter-agency communication.

September 26, 2019

BondLink Partners with IHS Markit for Muni Bond Transparency

An alliance between one company that profiles bond issuers and another that facilitates bond sales aims to make it easier for investors to view a government's credit information before buying.

September 25, 2019

Govlaunch Building a Free ‘Innovation Wiki’ for Government

Billed as a resource for local governments to share details and stories about their projects and technology investments, Govlaunch has crowdsourced information from over 150 governments in 37 states.

September 25, 2019

Startup Uses AI to Help Cities Find Unpaid Property Taxes

Two data-as-a-service tools from the company, which it has running in two California counties, propose to help local governments identify unpaid taxes from unassessed property improvements and rental income.

September 20, 2019

Colorado the First State to Remove Bar Codes from Ballots

The state is discontinuing the use of QR codes for tabulation that couldn’t be verified by the human eye, taking a cue from election security groups who say hand-countable paper ballots are most secure.

September 16, 2019

L.A. to Choose Blockchain Pilot Project at CIS Conference

Officials and event organizers will choose four finalists to present on stage in October, then award the best one a $25,000 investment plus a $25,000 pilot project with the city of Los Angeles.

September 12, 2019

Veritone Releases OS for Artificial Intelligence on Azure

Veritone’s aiWARE, marketed as “the first operating system for artificial intelligence,” lays a foundation for future AI programs aimed at public safety, large-scale video analysis and beyond.

September 4, 2019

Citizen Engagement Companies Partner on Budgeting Software

Bang the Table and Balancing Act are selling their software together, offering local government customers a platform to get citizens involved with detailed, do-it-at-home budget simulations.

September 1, 2019

Satellite Data Increasingly Affordable, Accessible for Gov

In an interview with GT, Swarm Technologies co-founder and chief technology officer Benjamin Longmier explains how his company syncs public- and private-sector clients to maximize data use from small satellites.

August 30, 2019

Chicago PD Testing Samsung Phones to Replace In-Car Laptops

The versatility and computing power of modern smartphones could render older, bulkier devices obsolete, particularly for police officers and first responders who use computers in many different environments.

August 23, 2019

El Paso, Texas, IT Director Leaving to Become Arlington’s CTO

After six years leading the city of El Paso, Texas’ IT department, cutting costs while expanding services, Enrique Martinez Jr., will head to the Dallas-area city of Arlington in September.

August 22, 2019

School Safety Package Includes AI, Social Media Monitoring

With OnGuard, Maryland-based security company Rekor has packaged several AI algorithms and human-conducted services together to detect violent school threats before they occur — online, on campus and at bus stops.

July 29, 2019

FirstNet-Certified Visual Labs Turns Phones into Body Cams

With the privacy and bandwidth afforded by FirstNet, the San Francisco Bay Area software company hopes to create an alternative to body cameras by replacing them with equally secure and more versatile smartphones.

July 18, 2019

New Accelerator, CivStart, to Focus on Gov Tech Partnerships

A new startup accelerator has chosen 10 companies for a two-year mentorship program to bring civic technology solutions to market, with a specific focus on enduring problems that face state and local government.

July 17, 2019

Forensic Logic Announces Nationwide Crime Search Tool

A San Francisco Bay Area company has combined its law enforcement search engine with Coplink, a well-known data-analysis tool, to make a smarter platform for sharing information and solving cases.

July 12, 2019

Subscription Service Offers Government High-Res Aerial Pics

The Colorado-based company Vexcel Imaging is flying proprietary cameras across the U.S. to create visualizations and data for planimetrics, mapping and zoning, property appraisal, emergency response and other uses.

July 10, 2019

Accela Partners With Kind for Seed-to-Sale Cannabis Tracking

The cloud software giant’s latest partnership adds to its suite of cannabis-compliance tools the ability to monitor plants, keeping them separate from the illicit market and accountable to growers and buyers.

July 9, 2019

Mastercard Debuts Card to Act as ID, Payment for Underserved

Members of underserved populations don’t always have credit cards. City Key is Mastercard’s effort to help cities distribute services and benefits by creating a tool that can act as an ID, payment card or access pass.

July 2, 2019

Aurora, Ill., in Talks with Startup to Handle IT Procurement

Marketplace.city’s online portal and support team proposes to make the procurement and implementation of new technology faster and easier by allowing government to outsource the most time-consuming work.

June 25, 2019

Cities and Industry Launch New Foundation to Manage Mobility

An international coalition of cities, departments of transportation, nonprofits, mobility companies and other stakeholders is taking a big swing at urban mobility data, rules and regulations.

June 25, 2019

As Crop Spreads, Accela Announces Hemp Licensing Software

Anticipating a wave of interest in what has become a rapidly growing market across the country, the cloud software company has added hemp licensing to its suite of cannabis regulation tools.

June 13, 2019

Smartsheet Work Management Platform Nears FedRAMP Clearance

Made specifically for government customers, Smartsheet Gov gives agencies the ability to manage and report on work projects and tasks with cloud software that meets FedRAMP’s stringent requirements.

June 12, 2019

Software Lets Santa Barbara Move Worker Timesheets Off Paper

With an investment the city’s IT manager regarded as overdue, Santa Barbara, Calif., will automate several regular paper processes by using Kronos' Workforce Dimensions and Workforce TeleStaff.

June 10, 2019

Passport Buys Complus, a Competitor in City Parking Tech

With its second acquisition in eight months, Passport is expanding in the northeastern U.S. It will look to Complus' 200 customers to improve its customer feedback operation while developing its offerings.

June 5, 2019

Ride Report Raises $3.4M to Grow Micromobility Data Platform

The Portland, Ore.-based company has announced new funding to market and expand its SaaS that gives cities in-depth data on micromobility operators on their streets via partnerships with many startups.

June 1, 2019

Shared Service Agreements Bring Pricey Tech within Reach

Technologies both mainstream and emerging promise to improve government service delivery. To reduce costs and increase efficiency, jurisdictions are working together to get what they need.

May 31, 2019

How Should Cities Handle New Mobility Data? NACTO Has Ideas

Two associations with expertise in government and mobility have jointly issued a document to answer cities’ questions about how to negotiate contracts with mobility companies, and what to do with the resulting data.

May 29, 2019

Nonprofit’s Free App Flags Suspicious Changes to Voter Rolls

As concerns arise of international meddling in U.S. elections, nonpartisan nonprofit Protect Democracy has created a free Web app for secretaries of state to keep an eye on their voter rolls in case of hacking or tampering.

May 28, 2019

CTO Wanda Gibson Leaving Fairfax County, Va., After 20 Years

One of America’s longest-serving IT chiefs at the local level is moving from one D.C. suburb to another, bringing decades of experience and recognition to a new county government role in Maryland.

May 24, 2019

New CentralSquare Acquisition to Unify CAD Systems

By folding Tellus Safety Solutions’ CAD-to-CAD communication software into a public safety platform used by over 5,000 agencies, CentralSquare aims to boost sharing between 911 centers around the country.

May 22, 2019

AI-Powered Weapon Detectors to Undergo Testing in Utah

New technology developed by MIT Lincoln Laboratory creates 3-D images by scanning passersby with low-frequency radio waves, then applies deep learning to analyze anything that looks like a weapon.

May 21, 2019

ClearGov Partners with Media Companies to Share Civic Data

The digital transparency company is building a network of website partners to disseminate fiscal data for every civic entity in the U.S., giving residents multiple avenues to see how their local governments are doing.

May 16, 2019

Rackspace Unveils Program to Speed Up FedRAMP Compliance

A faster, more affordable route to compliance with federal standards could make the gov tech market more accessible to thousands of software providers by giving them some of the credibility of a federal check mark.

May 14, 2019

CivicPlus Takes Minority Investment for Growth, Acquisitions

The integrated-solutions provider has new funding from BV Investment Partners and plans for expansion, including more buyouts and products to add to its growing suite of tools for digital government.

May 10, 2019

Microsoft, Galois to Release Open Source ‘ElectionGuard’ SDK

Planned for release on GitHub this summer, a software development kit aims to supplement paper ballot systems to make them end-to-end verifiable. That could allow voters to verify for themselves that their vote was counted.

May 6, 2019

Civic Engagement, Surveys Come Together in Polco-NRC Merger

By combining NRC’s scientific surveys and database with Polco’s communication and dashboard capabilities, executives hope to develop a faster way for local governments to gauge public opinion.

May 3, 2019

Blockchain Civic Engagement Tool to Be Tested in Vermont

A nine-month pilot project could yield new information on the best way for citizens and officials to communicate, and even a new model for cities to engage residents on hot-button issues in real time.

May 1, 2019

Dude Solutions Buys NET’s Energy Management Platform

As Dude Solutions continues to sell Energy Manager alongside its other operations management programs, with service and support from NET, the company will set up a dedicated business unit for energy products.

April 26, 2019

SeeClickFix Adds Resource Tracking, Activity Updates to App

Work Orders version 2 offers resource guidelines and tracking, activity streaming and progress updates via photos and communication to the SeeClickFix app, giving governments more tools to keep employees in the loop.

April 25, 2019

User Reporting Appears to Alleviate Scooter Parking Issues

To reduce clutter and carelessness with e-scooters, companies are offering ways for users to report improperly parked or damaged scooters. Now, one company has released metrics showing the success of their initiative.

April 23, 2019

New Hampshire CIO Denis Goulet Nominated for Second Term

Republican Gov. Chris Sununu re-nominated former Democratic Gov. Maggie Hassan’s appointment from 2015, asking Goulet to focus on using digital government tech to improve services for citizens and businesses.

April 22, 2019

Motorola Solutions Cuts Socrata Out of Crime Mapping Tool

After the split from Socrata happens in June, Motorola Solutions will continue to support CrimeReports for the many agencies and websites that have come to rely on its open data for crime reporting.

April 16, 2019

CivicPlus Builds Civic Engagement Platform on "Headless" CMS

A structural overhaul of CivicPlus’ old platforms, Engage 6 allows local governments to create content in one space and share it automatically across any other separate platforms or devices used by citizens.

April 15, 2019

Neighborland Makes Public Engagement Tool for Transportation

Rich data, qualitative feedback, smarter maps and involved citizens lead to more successful projects and an ever-evolving platform, according to the citizen engagement company based in Boulder, Colo.

April 10, 2019

Carbyne-Cisco Partnership Means IoT Data for 911 Dispatch

Cisco’s platform makes its first foray into 911 response through a partnership with Carbyne, allowing call centers to collect data from both 911 callers and government-owned Internet of Things devices.

April 4, 2019

Phoenix Hires Former Alaska Official Shannon Lawson as CISO

The former Alaska CISO and Navy security specialist will head up cybersecurity operations for America’s fifth-largest city, drawing on experience with security operations centers, team building and program development.

April 3, 2019

Coord Turns Street Photos Into Curb Data for Six Cities

Free maps of physical curb assets such as signs, paint lines and fire hydrants are available for neighborhoods in six cities, with more to come. Coord wants this to be a resource for urban planners and others.

April 2, 2019

Google, Accela, Esri Among New Mentors to STiR Startups

Accela, Esri, Google, Microsoft and five others will be giving marketing advice, business development resources and mentorship to the 22 startups currently involved with STiR’s 16-week cohort, which concludes in May.

March 28, 2019

Mark43’s RMS Integrates with Callyo’s Virtual Call System

The public safety dispatch and records management company adds Callyo to its growing list of integrated partners, which also includes SPIDR Tech, Carbyne and RapidSOS.

March 27, 2019

20 Public Safety Tech Companies to Tour 10 Cities in 2019

Twenty startups, offering everything from drone surveillance to data analytics, communications, firearm sensors and X-ray software, will show off their wares for first responders at 10 free conferences through the year.

March 26, 2019

Eric Boyette

Secretary and CIO, North Carolina

March 25, 2019

FirstNet App Catalog Vets Mobile Tools for First Responders

With FirstNet’s designated network in all 50 states and dozens of apps available in its catalog, the niche market for first responders originally envisioned by the 9/11 Commission has come to fruition.

March 22, 2019

Startup Ownum's First Product Is Blockchain Vehicle Titles

Vehicle titles, birth and death certificates, tax credits and vehicle tags are the focus of four subsidiaries under Ownum, a holding company trying to make paperless blockchain solutions for government processes.

March 21, 2019

Bloom Assembles Digital Government Alumni for Consulting

According to the former chief digital officer of Boston, one of the nation’s most ahead-of-the-curve cities in digital technology, the key to the future of high-tech government is cultural transformation.

March 14, 2019

Populus Raises $3.1M to Help Cities Plan for Shared Mobility

Just one year old, Populus has raised $3.85 million to date and says it’s been enlisting a new client every week. Its platform collects data from shared scooters, bikes and cars to give to city planners.

March 11, 2019

After Upheaval, Alaska Names Acting CIO, Permanent CISO

In the midst of turnover and consolidations, Alaska’s Office of Information Technology is being led by a veteran of several state departments. Exactly what he has planned for state IT remains to be seen.

March 8, 2019

Nexus Software Hopes to Make Parole Decisions Evidence-Based

The new platform hopes to ease the workload for parole officers and inform smarter responses to parolee behavior by automating communications, notifications, data collection and other aspects of the probation process.

March 4, 2019

Driessen Leaves Hennepin County for San Jose Asst. CIO Job

Silicon Valley’s gain is the Twin Cities-area’s loss as a respected project leader and strategic planner joins San Jose to tag team new projects with CIO Rob Lloyd. Jerry Driessen will serve as assistant CIO.

March 1, 2019

Former Palo Alto, Calif., CIO Won't Work at Oracle After All

Despite announcing the move in November, Jonathan Reichental has turned down the offer from Oracle in favor of starting his own business. Oracle, meanwhile, is still searching for somebody to fill the position.

February 26, 2019

Mark43, Carbyne Partner on Integrated Cloud-Based Dispatch

A partnership between two applications for law enforcement will move 911 dispatch services to the cloud, allowing responders to receive more data from connected devices and set up impromptu call centers as needed.

February 22, 2019

Blockchain Voting Company Votem's Future Cloudy After Layoffs

The company’s CEO cites restructuring while Cleveland media report the company is going out of business. An investor in the company said a 2018 acquisition might have created cash burn problems.

February 21, 2019

CityGrows Permit Platform Bets on Do-It-Yourself Simplicity

The former GovTech 100 company is still adding clients and functionality in an increasingly crowded market for government permitting software. Their bet to stand out includes simplicity and speed of deployment.

February 20, 2019

GTY Completes 6-Company Gov Tech Merger, Trades on Nasdaq

By combining some of the top SaaS providers in their respective fields with the clout and resources of a publicly traded company, GTY hopes to corner the market for widespread government adoption of cloud software.

February 15, 2019

New Michigan Cybersecurity Leader Emphasizes Collaboration

Meet Chris DeRusha, Michigan's new chief security officer — a former White House adviser who has been working for the state for about a year. DeRusha got his start under CIO David DeVries, who has since stepped down.

February 11, 2019

Camino Secures $5.9M to Bolster Permitting Platform

As the San Francisco-based company tries to simplify and democratize the process of obtaining permits, it plans to open its platform and make its data and APIs accessible to potential clients and innovators.

February 7, 2019

Noonlight Brings Caller Information to 911 Dispatch for Free

A mobile app sends 911 a message with location and other personal data from connected IoT devices, automatically giving responders information in place of the user making a phone call.

February 4, 2019

Unisys Unveils Microsoft Azure Version of CloudForte

Unisys, the Pennsylvania-based digital transformation company, has now released cloud transition software for the two biggest cloud companies, Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, betting on managed services.

January 24, 2019

Accela Announces New Environmental Health Application

The company adds environmental health to its growing list of civic applications — which already included marijuana regulation, among other things — touting research and interoperability as keys to emerging topics.

January 22, 2019

ProudCity's New Meetings Tool Aims to Help Small Governments

As an add-on or standalone product, ProudCity Meetings aims to fill a simple niche overlooked by larger software providers: a public meeting tool for small governments that can’t afford huge enterprise systems.

January 17, 2019

CivicPlus Adds 311 Capabilities to Integrated Solution Suite

CP Connect works with any online CMS or other communications channel of a citizen’s choice, including phone, text, email, social media or other websites.

January 15, 2019

Former FEMA Admin.: AI Can Marry Urban Planning and Disaster Response

Former FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate is now with a company called One Concern, whose existing tools for earthquakes and floods, and a third in the works for wildfires, create highly detailed maps of possible damage.

January 10, 2019

CompTIA Absorbs Locally Focused Public Technology Institute

The merger between a global tech industry advocate and a locally focused professional development group will bring new resources to government IT decision-makers, with an early emphasis on counties.

January 8, 2019

CentralSquare Acquires Infrastructure Management Firm Lucity

One of the largest public-administration software providers, CentralSquare, has absorbed a new tool to help government clients address crumbling infrastructure with asset management software.

January 4, 2019

Hawaii Gov. Names State Comptroller Murdock to CIO Position

A former state comptroller and VP of fiscal affairs for the Hawaii Tourism Authority, Douglas Murdock is set to take over leadership of the state IT department from Todd Nacapuy, who stepped down to enter the private sector.

December 28, 2018

Citymart’s BidSpark Aims to Bring New Vendors to Government

The New York-based procurement platform sends RFPs to a database of more than 100,000 vendors, most of which are new to the gov tech market, in an effort to ramp up the government's options.

December 27, 2018

Michigan CIO to Depart as New Governor Takes the Reins

David DeVries helped Michigan launch a statewide ERP system, move the state’s computers to Windows 10 and replace several legacy systems for multiple agencies. Now, with a new governor inbound, he's stepping down.

December 11, 2018

Five Questions with New Accela CEO Gary Kovacs

Gary Kovacs, who has held senior executive positions at AVG Technologies, Mozilla, Adobe and others, hopes to usher the government software company into a new era with speed and adaptability.

December 5, 2018

New Data-Driven Software Tool Assesses Environmental Impacts

A new partnership between the software developer UrbanFootprint and a conservation group could help city planners and others decide where and how to build with minimal impact to natural environments.

December 3, 2018

Illinois CIO Kirk Lonbom Retires After 38 Years in Public Service

As a police officer, detective, undercover officer, intelligence analyst and information officer of various departments over decades, Lonbom navigated the push toward more data-driven, collaborative government.

November 28, 2018

Colorado CIO Returns to Her IT Roots at Dish Network

Exiting Chief Information Officer Suma Nallapati will return to the company where she started her IT career as a programmer in 1997, this time as its chief digital officer overseeing application delivery and digital strategy implementation.

November 26, 2018

Oracle Recruits Palo Alto CIO for Public-Sector Division

Having spearheaded across-the-board upgrades for public tech in the city of Palo Alto, Jonathan Reichental will join Oracle as its global industries solution leader for gov tech.

November 21, 2018

ProudCity Builds Recovery Website for Paradise, Calif., in 3 Days

Like it did for Sonoma County, Calif., after the Santa Rosa fire in 2017, the digital government platform was able to launch a customizable portal for evacuation, shelter, donation and other info in a matter of days.

November 20, 2018

Data Startup Geospiza Helps Cities Prepare for Disaster

The online platform pulls data so officials can make better decisions about how to prepare for, and respond to, disasters. It's working with Kansas City, Mo., to find neighborhoods at the greatest risk of fire.

November 13, 2018

For Digital Identity Management, Startup Offers Blockchain

Two people who worked on Illinois' project to vet blockchain for government uses have started their own company, aimed at solving the fundamental problem they kept running into in government: identity management.

November 12, 2018

Consulting Firm GCOM Acquires Three Sigma Software

The merger, announced Friday, includes continued support for the acquired company's software for administering the federal Women, Infants and Children nutrition program and is intended to accommodate new growth and more clients.

November 8, 2018

Numetric Announces New Analytical Tools for Road Safety

The data analytics company’s new software suites align problem diagnosis, countermeasure options and design. They also have a tool to expedite information sharing, to cut down on FOIA response time.

November 6, 2018

Sidewalk Labs-Backed Coord Releases App for Mapping Street Curbs

As much activity happens on the sides of streets every day, it's not easy to log the features of a curb. So a company backed by Sidewalk Labs — a subsidiary of Google's parent company, Alphabet — is looking to crowdsource the information with a new mobile app.

October 31, 2018

Chicago Startup Gets $1.1M Contract to Develop Alert System for Emergency Responders

A text or a ping preceding lights and sirens could save lives.

October 26, 2018

Australian Developer Bringing Disaster Response App to the States

RADAR helps users document damage and qualify for government assistance.

October 22, 2018

Mark43 Partners with Police Foundation for Near Miss Reporting

The cloud-based data platform aims to make record-keeping on close-call incidents easier for law enforcement.

October 18, 2018

ClearGov Jumps Into Government Budgeting Software, Bringing AI with It

ClearGov Budgets hopes to wean small governments off spreadsheets.

October 15, 2018

Tired of Kids Getting Fined, Startup Crowdfunds an App to Permit the Lemonade Stand

The PermitMe app would aim to make it easier for lemonade stands to get legal.

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