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Linux DevCenter: Open Source in Government: Newport News, Va.

Jan 17, 2004, 04:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tom Adelstein)

[ Thanks to Wayne Slade for this link. ]

"What if you ran a city government and had to upgrade your infrastructure, productivity applications, comply with new homeland security standards, and do it in the midst of a budget crunch. If that sounds familiar, you're not the only one facing this dilemma.

"In fact, the majority of municipalities in the United States have budget problems. They also urgently need to upgrade their internal information systems while providing Internet eGovernment services such as online document filings, driver's license renewals, school registration, and tax assessments and payments. The costs just continue to rise.

"A recent study by a city of 200,000 residents concluded that a computer upgrade would cost $30 million over a three-year period. Multiply that by as many as 20,000 cities and the hit to the economy starts looking significant. As we know, the only way to pay for such an upgrade involves increases in taxes, levies, and bonds. In our system, leaving those funds in the hands of the citizens has a better economic effect than trying to shove them through a bureaucracy..."

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