The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a lot of changes – from public health to remote work – but investing in technology upgrades to improve citizen services and cybersecurity could lead to the most lasting impact on state and local governments (SLGs), according to several state IT officials who spoke at MeriTalk’s State Tech Vision virtual event on March 29.

2022 State Tech Vision

For state and local governments (SLGs), the time is now to make big investments to address cybersecurity challenges and improve digital citizen services. Fortunately, Congress has put billions of dollars in the Federal funding pipeline heading to states and localities to help jumpstart those efforts.

Now that the Federal government, via the Department of Labor (DoL), has signed up to put $2 billion of stimulus-related funding into shoring up beleaguered state unemployment insurance (UI) systems overpowered by the jobless claim surge due to coronavirus pandemic, Federal and state officials discussed how those efforts will roll out during a panel discussion at MeriTalk’s State Tech Vision virtual program on September 15.

State and local government rely heavily on Federal funding sources to advance their IT goals even in the best of times, and government and industry experts explained at MeriTalk’s State Tech Vision virtual program how expanded Federal government funding streams during the pandemic era can work to help pay for traditional assistance for social service and healthcare applications, plus IT modernization efforts targeted by Washington.

Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va. – long a prime mover in Congress for improving Federal IT operations – said at MeriTalk’s State Tech Vision virtual program on September 15 that he plans to push two key pieces of legislation this year that aim to help state and local governments improve their own IT capabilities.

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