Whitehall leaves e-councils £1.8bn short

Councils work hard to make ends meet ....
Written by Kate Hanaghan, Contributor

Councils work hard to make ends meet ....

Local councils are being short-changed by Whitehall in the run up to the 2005 target for fully-fledged e-government services. Although Whitehall has pledged £350m to local councils so that they can bring all government services online, the figure falls far below the actual cost of such implementations. Kable Research suggests an extra £1.8bn is what the councils needs in order to reach the so-called e-targets set by government. Kable based its research on spending plans included in local council Implementing Electronic Government (IEG) statements. High on the priority list for councils is community access technology, which is expected to cost an estimated £306m and CRM, which will cost £287m. These two elements alone total more than the amount pledged by government. Despite the shortfall, the research finds that local councils are working hard to make the best of a bad situation. Councils are collaborating with each other to share development costs.
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