While state and local government agencies were working to deploy digital services and improve the delivery of constituent services before the pandemic, the urgency accelerated by ten-fold over the past two years as citizens in every state and jurisdiction needed government services delivered quickly and remotely. They needed and expected a holistic, digital experience with the same easy access, responsiveness, and transparency that they have in other aspects of their lives.
Michigan and Ontario, Canada, announced the expansion of their longstanding collaboration on transportation and cross-border activities to advance automotive and mobility technologies and help people and goods move safely and efficiently across the border by land, air, and water.
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that she is dedicating $65 million in Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dollars to Michigan K-12 school districts and higher education institutions to fund, among other matters, the technology needed to engage in remote or hybrid learning.
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder announced Monday that the state will open two new cyber hubs at Northern Michigan University and University of Michigan-Flint. The cyber hubs are an extension of the Michigan Cyber Range, which the state described as “the nation’s largest unclassified cyber range.” The new locations will serve as a hub for security training and workforce development, and hosting events, exercises, and training classes.
On Monday Cisco announced that Michigan is the first state to join Cisco’s State Digital Acceleration (SDA) program, a 3-year targeted collaboration program to advance the state’s digital agenda. Cisco announced the SDA initiative in Detroit at the 2017 North American International Cyber Summit hosted by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder.
The National Association of State CIOs recognized excellence in state technology at all levels at the recently wrapped NASCIO 2017 annual conference. Four awards were announced: the State Technology Innovator Awards, the 2017 NASCIO State IT Recognition Awards, the Thomas M. Jarrett Cybersecurity Scholarship, and the Corporate Longevity Awards.
The Federal Communications Commission last week approved guidelines it will use to evaluate network proposals for states that want to opt out of FirstNet, the wireless broadband public safety network that AT&T is developing. AT&T was awarded the $6.5 billion contract earlier this year.
AT&T was awarded a $6.5 billion contract to build and operate the nationwide network FirstNet. However, the legislation that authorizes FirstNet also authorizes a state to develop its own alternative on the spectrum carved out for the network, as long as the alternative is interoperable with the FirstNet core.