Linux DevCenter: Open Source in Government: Newport News, Va.
Jan 17, 2004, 04:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Tom Adelstein)
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"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
"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