David Fletcher's Government and Technology Weblog : news & perspectives from a long-time egov advocate
Updated: 11/3/2003; 8:03:09 AM.



Tuesday, October 28, 2003

I met with Randy Hughes, Utah's new Enterprise Architect this afternoon.  I am excited about having an enterprise architect on board and hope that we will be able to leverage his work toward new innovations and services.  The Department of Homeland Security completed the first version of their enterprise architecture in four months under Steve Cooper's direction.  We should be able to do that.

Earlier today, DHS unveiled details for the US-VISIT sytem.

5:32:39 PM    comment []

Governor Leavitt met with the press today to answer questions regarding his confirmation and the transition in Utah to future Governor Olene Walker.  Here is a RealVideo clip of the entire press conference held earlier today.

The transition schedule is also available for the coming week.  The new Lt. Governor will be announced tomorrow at 11:00 am.  I will post the announcement here shortly after it occurs.

Governor Leavitt also held a press conference last night prior to the confirmation.  Here's the transcript.

Acting EPA Administrator Marianne Horinko issued the following statement:

“Today’s Senate vote confirming Mike Leavitt is great news for the Agency, and for our mission of continued protection of human health and the environment. Mike is a thoughtful leader who will bring to EPA his strengths of collaborative environmental management, his commitment to air and water quality and land conservation and his dedication to ensuring effective stewardship of our natural resources.

“From what I understand, he is expected to start here as early as the end of next week. I know Mike Leavitt is looking forward to coming here as much as we are looking forward to having him. I know he will be a great Administrator and I am pleased at the Senate vote today.”

5:15:32 PM    comment []

Several Democrats stood and voiced their support for Mike Leavitt during the debate, including Tom Carper of Delaware and Harry Reid of Nevada.  Senator Hatch gave a brilliant rebuttal of Senator Lautenberg's negative statement about the governor.  Mr. Lautenberg has been listening to a few disgruntled activists, rather than examining the facts in their entirety.  Senator Inhofe of Oklahoma has been a stalwart supporter throughout the process. 

Final Tally: AYEs  88  NAYs  8

Roll Call vote on the Leavitt nomination

Negative Votes: Reed (RI), Lautenberg (NJ), Boxer (CA), Rockefeller (WV), Corzine (NJ), Dayton (MN), Schumer (NY)

The Governor announced yesterday that he will add an environmental ecosystem to Utah's Economic Ecosystems.

KSL has added the Bloomberg Utah Index to their site that is designed to measure the performance of the Salt Lake City area economy.  It's up slightly today, led by software-maker Altiris whose stock is up over 16%.

9:18:55 AM    comment []

An article in the Sacramento Bee suggests that California is losing $2 million a week by failing to cross-match unemployment payments with a new-hire registry.  The Bee recommends a low cost solution such as that implemented by Utah in 1997.  The article states:

Every night, on an old main-frame computer, the state runs a cross-match between the unemployment rolls and the new-hire database. The programming and implementation cost a little less than $100,000 but, according to a 2000 report by the state of Utah, overpayments dropped 43 percent in the first year.

"It's not a costly program relative to the millions of dollars of unemployment fraud it detects," said Bill Starks, tax chief for Utah's unemployment insurance division. "It's hard to imagine anything that could generate more money for the trust fund at such a low cost."

The only problem with this statement is that Utah does not have an old mainframe.  Our mainframe is pretty up-to-date.  Many feel that anything associated with "mainframe" computing must be old.  This solution was developed by the same department that developed jobs.utah.gov, a site that now supports 65% of the state's job referrals through their online service.

8:07:22 AM    comment []

Map of California FiresI woke up yesterday morning to the smell of smoke in the air and left home wondering where the fire was.  USDA has posted some excellent maps of current fire activity, most of which, obviously, is in California.  The fire I smelled was the 1500 acre "Cherry Creek" fire east of Springville, probably 25 miles away.  The Large Incident fire map developed by the Remote Sensing Applications Center gives a quick overview of fires throughout the country.  Check out this MODIS map for detail of what is happening in California.  What is wrong at the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection?  The state is burning and there is no news about what is happening.  Fire data only extends through September.  This graphic from the LA Times tells a lot.  Interesting that all the data sources are federal.

RS2004 a remote sensing applications conference will be held in Salt Lake City on April 5-9, 2004.  Abstracts are due on January 12, 2004.

By the way, the filibuster is over.  Expect Governor Leavitt to be confirmed by the Senate this morning at 8:30 am Mountain time.  He already is putting plans in place and has some creative ideas that he will introduce to the agency.

7:07:10 AM    comment []

Alan Mather is blogging about Firebird.  I just installed Firebird two days ago.  I had been having some minor problems with both Netscape and IE, but only when using a Sprint wireless card which was my primary source of connectivity while I was in New York (in addition to a free high-speed ethernet connection at Le Parker Meridien).  Those issues required me to run both browsers at the some time, to overcome the issues with each.  Mozilla claims that you may double the value of your internet browsing with built-in features like tab-browsing (this can be useful when you have three tiers of windows open at any given time) and popup blocking.  I haven't confirmed that but you may want to try it out.
6:41:10 AM    comment []

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