Monday, August 6, 2007

Something VERY Good in e-governent! (# 36 in E-Education)

Study ranks Michigan No. 2 in e-gov

Posted on 8/3/2007 1:16:56 PM

Brown University's eighth annual analysis of e-government among the 50 United States has named Michigan a leader among all state governments when it comes to the effective governmental use of Web-based technology. Michigan placed second, just behind Delaware, in the ranking of all 50 states released late last month.

Web sites were evaluated for the presence of electronic features, such as online publications, databases, audio clips, video clips, foreign language content, translation services, advertisements, premium fees, user payments or fees, disability access, privacy policy, security policy, online services, digital signatures, credit card payments, e-mail addresses, comment forms, automatic e-mail updates, Web site personalization, PDA accessibility and readability.

"We are obviously thrilled with this news," said Teri Takai, Director of the Michigan Department of Information Technology. "We have been very successful in partnering with all the state agencies in order to utilize the Web to give citizens the types of services and information that they need."

Some of the recent enhancements to that helped earn Michigan the second spot in the ranking include:

* Foreign language navigation which allows information access for citizens whose primary language is not English

* Text only functionality for sight-impaired users and the ability to easily enlarge text font sizes

* The ability to access through wireless devices, with more than one million individuals viewing content on portable devices

* A podcast site that allows streamed media to be downloaded to portable players, with the intent of reaching young audiences

* Multi-channeled customer support, including help and contact features supplemented by a fully staffed, 24-7 call center

* A single electronic interface for processing credit card and debit payments via the Internet

* A nationally recognized Internet mapping capability with a wealth of geographical information available for public consumption

* The ability for corporations to file annual reports online, eliminating the paper workflow

* The ability for employers to e-register for business tax identification, eliminating a burdensome paper application process

* A statewide grants management system providing information and applications for over 200 grant programs in state government

Michigan moved up two spots from the most recent ranking done by Brown, having been ranked fourth in the study last year. Michigan's Web site is at

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