Horn: Fed Y2K efforts lagging in key service programs

Despite the progress the Clinton administration has made with its Year 2000 efforts, the federal government remains critically behind in ensuring that federal services administered on the state-level will go uninterrupted next year.

During a press conference today on Capitol Hill, Rep. Stephen Horn (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Government Management, Information and Technology Subcommittee, gave the Clinton administration an overall grade of B-minus in his eighth report card, which assesses agencies' Year 2000 efforts. Last quarter, the administration also received a B-minus.

But for the first time in the history of his grading system, Horn graded the Year 2000 readiness of 43 major federal programs that provide services to millions of American citizens, including Medicare, child nutrition, food inspection and retired rail workers' benefits.

"Thirty-six programs remain at risk of failure when the clock ticks past midnight on Dec. 31," Horn said. "In many cases, the federal agency responsible for the program may be compliant, but its business partners—state and local governments and the private sector—who assist in delivering the service are not ready."

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