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California's I.T. Crisis

State lacks common tech standards and can't exchange info between departments
California state tech leaders and politicians convened last week to review a report issued earlier this month that described the state's technology programs as "in crisis" and without strategic direction or alignment with state government objectives. "There's no overall coordination of the state's use of technology, resulting in functions that are poorly organized, duplicative, and inefficient," the report says.

Gov. Schwarzenegger launched the internal review this year.

Gov. Schwarzenegger launched the internal review this year.
Last week's hearing at San Jose State University was the third of seven scheduled to address recommendations of the California Performance Review, an effort Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger launched to fix state financial and administrative problems. The latest hearing addressed IT, performance-based management, procurement, and personnel.

Although California is the sixth largest economy in the world, it has no common technology standards and "cannot exchange information reliably between--or even within--its 79 departments," the report says. Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia have successful programs to manage IT statewide.

Speakers at the hearing considered 32 recommendations, including the integration of IT and business governance, a secure state infrastructure, and a statewide enterprise architecture. "Technology is now available to truly integrate government's many enterprises and enable real-time, dynamic interactions between California state government and the Californians it serves," the report says.

California's $4.5 billion IT budget is roughly 7% of its overall budget.