White House cuts paper out of federal budget
OMB says it plans to release paperless 'e-budget' for FY09
Computerworld - Forget all the red ink in the federal budget. The White House is going green on this year's budget.
In a move that the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) says will save roughly 20 tons of paper, or about 480 trees, the Bush administration will release the government's first-ever paperless budget on Feb. 4.
The plan to issue a so-called e-budget means that the White House won't order any hard-copy versions of the budget for the government's 2009 fiscal year, which starts in October. Instead, the OMB will post a fully downloadable and searchable electronic copy on its Web site and make the document accessible to anyone who wants to read it, according to a statement by OMB Director Jim Nussle that was released yesterday.
Typically, the government prints about 3,000 copies of the budget annually for distribution at the White House, on Capitol Hill and to members of the media. This year's budget is expected to total nearly 2,200 pages across a set of four budget books, Nussle said.
People who still want hard copies will be able to order them from the Government Printing Office. But OMB officials expect that the switch to an e-budget will save nearly $1 million over the next five years, according to Karen Evans, administrator of e-government and IT at the agency and the federal government's de facto CIO.
The move is the latest example of the government's efforts to improve efficiencies via the use of technology, Evans said in an interview today. "From an e-government perspective, this is one of the final steps of the modernization process," she said. "You are not truly modernized until you turn off all your legacy systems."
The move to a paperless budget won't require any new IT systems, Evans added. She noted that the White House already had been making online copies of the budget available, although this is the first time that the budget will exclusively be released in an electronic form.
Via the use of the Sitemap Protocol, the OMB's IT staff has taken steps to make it easier for users to search the e-budget, and for search engines to index the data it contains, Evans said. That protocol is an industry standard designed to give Web sites a standard way to provide information to search engines about pages that are available for crawling.
Efforts have also been made to ensure that the server hosting the e-budget has enough capacity and availability to handle any unexpected traffic, Evans said without providing any details. "The worst thing that can happen is if the server were to crash," she said.
Read more about Government IT in Computerworld's Government IT Topic Center.
This pilot fish is a contractor at a military base, working on some very cool fire-control systems for tanks. But when he spots something obviously wrong during a live-fire test, he can't get the firing-range commander's attention.
- IT Certification Study Tips
- Register for this Computerworld Insider Study Tip guide and gain access to hundreds of premium content articles, cheat sheets, product reviews and more.
- Reduce federal infrastructure risk with compliance management and situational awareness
- IBM continuous monitoring and management solutions deliver real-time situational awareness to help federal agencies understand vulnerabilities, and protect the infrastructure.
- 5 Ways Dropbox for Business Keeps Your Data Protected
- Protecting your data isn't a feature on a checklist, something to be tacked on as an afterthought. Download here to find out how...
- What is this "File Sync" Thing and Why Should I Care About It?
- All of a sudden, getting a file from your work laptop to your iPad became as simple as clicking "Save." So it's no...
- The Keys to Securing Data in a Collaborative Workplace
- Losing data is costly. IT professionals have spent years learning how to protect their organizations from hackers, but how do you ward off...
- Evaluating File Sync and Share Solutions: 12 Questions to Ask about Security
- File sync and share can increase productivity, but how do you pick a solution that works for you? Download to learn some important... All Government IT White Papers
- Charting Your Analytical Future - "Making predictive analytics part of your business processes" Webinar This session will show how predictive analytics can be used throughout the organization by anyone looking for answers and how organizations can make...
- On-demand webinar - 7 Keys to Service Catalog Implementation Success Watch this webinar to learn 7 crucial keys to make your service catalog a success!
- Transform Your IT Service Management Watch this webinar, to learn how EasyVista can increase IT productivity & efficiency and deliver streamlined & integrated IT Service & Asset Mgmt.
- IBM FlashSystem V840: Leveraging Software-Defined Flash to Drive Your Business With end-to-end, tightly integrated functionality and super-fast flash technology, products like IBM FlashSystem V840 Enterprise Performance Solution empower businesses to leverage the efficiency...
- Leveraging Flash Storage to Accelerate Oracle Real Application Clusters Join this webinar to understand the latest solid-state storage trends, the specific applications driving solid-state storage deployments and the benefits of deploying the...
- All Government IT Webcasts