December 7, 2000The portion of the federal information technology budget devoted to electronic government is expected to grow from 24 percent in 2001 to 28 percent in 2005, according to a new study by Input, a market research firm based in Chantilly, Va. While e-gov expenditures are growing at 10 percent a year, Input expects the traditional IT budget to grow at just 5 percent a year. "There is broad-based support for e-gov initiatives [taken] by the Clinton administration and Congress," said Kevin Plexico, Input's executive vice president. "There are a lot of obstacles for e-gov though, including security and privacy concerns as well as tight budgetary controls." Despite the projected increases, the federal government is not investing in e-gov at the level private industries are investing in e-business. According to Input, private industries' yearly e-business purchases are growing at a rate of 20 to 25 percent a year. Input looked at agency IT budgets and information research management plans and identified the programs that were e-gov-related and those that reflect more traditional IT activities. However, Plexico said that the money the government is spending on e-gov could actually be much higher if funds from non-IT budget sources are taken into account. "We only looked at IT budgets," Plexico said. "We believe there is a lot of money being spent out of the operational budget on e-gov rather than the IT budget. If you counted those dollars, the size of [e-gov spending] would be bigger."
December 7, 2000