Microsoft, GovPartner form team

Microsoft Corp. and San Diego-based GovPartner have teamed up to develop

and offer e-government and other technology applications to small- and medium-size

municipalities.

Officials from both companies said the partnership combines the experience

of a municipal professional services firm with one of the premier technology

and software companies. The alliance will target cities with populations

of 20,000 to 200,000.

Small- to medium-size municipalities generally are underserved because

they cannot afford the technology or the expertise to manage it, said Frank

Giebutowski, general manager of Microsoft's state and local government unit.

The partnership would offer services and options so that cities won't

have to invest large sums of money to upgrade their technology systems.

One option is based on an application service provider model, in which GovPartner

would host municipalities' software applications on the company's servers.

In this model, governments would pay a monthly subscription fee.

"This plays really well with the city manager trying to get something

going," said Giebutowski. "It gives them an opportunity to get into the

game."

GovPartner will build its products based on Microsoft technology. It

also will adopt Microsoft's .Net platform that the Redmond, Wash.-based

company touts will drive the next-generation of distributed computing and

e-government solutions.

Last September, GovPartner, the technology subsidiary of Berryman &

Henigar, was given an exclusive licensing deal with the city of Sunnyvale,

Calif., for several applications it developed, including a Web-enabled permit

software. Microsoft helped develop the applications with the city.

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