NASIRE honors state systems
- By Dibya Sarkar
- Sep 27, 2000
Working under heavy caseloads, a mountain of paper and with an antiquated
mainframe, New Jersey's Division of Workers' Compensation last year implemented
a new computer system to improve efficiency, save money and eventually become
the nation's first fully automated litigation system.
New Jersey's COURTS or Case, Organization, Utilization, Reporting
and Tracking System was one of nine best practices recognized at the National
Association of State Information and Resource Executives' annual conference
in Baltimore on Tuesday. COURTS won in the Information Architecture category.
Last year, about 100,000 workers' compensation cases were litigated
in the state, which has only 50 judges for the division. Paul Kapalko, director
and chief judge of New Jersey's Worker's Compensation Division, said the
new system links judges and clerical staff to the same database, produces
electronic hearing notices, provides online research and interfaces with
other government agencies.
Kapalko said 65 percent of all paper notices sent out to lawyers have
been eliminated, and postage costs have been reduced from $300,000 to $150,000
in one year. This week, attorneys will gain access to the system, and next
year the system will accept electronically filed claims, petitions and respondents'
Other NASIRE categories, and their corresponding winning best practices,
* Accessibility: Texas mandated and implemented information technology
systems and state Web sites so that all state employees and members of the
public with disabilities can have access.
* Communications Infrastructure: Virginia created a model to introduce
high-speed statewide networks into the public and private sectors.
* Digital Government: Idaho created a Web-based automated travel reimbursement
* Innovative Use of Technology: North Carolina's Department of Commerce
created a database of sites and buildings available within the state. The
information is more accurate and more frequently updated and is available
around the clock.
* IT Recruitment and Retention: Missouri created an IT coalition of
government, private industry and higher education to focus on reversing
the shortage of IT professionals.
* Public/Private Partnership: The Railroad Commission of Texas, in partnership
with the U.S. Department of Energy and oil and gas industry, is implementing
a completely paperless system to streamline regulatory demands and administrative
* Service Applications: The Kansas Department of Revenue has implemented
a project to enable residents to have multiple channels to file and pay
* State Planning and Management: Kansas created a training and certification
process for IT project managers in a 120-hour in-class instruction program
to address the occurrence of failed IT system projects.
Summaries of all nominations are available at www.nasire.org/awards.