With the American Rescue Plan passing into law in March 2021, $350 billion in flexible aid will be distributed to state and local governments. These free dollars are a unique opportunity for government entities to invest in technology to improve engagement with their local communities.
From modernizing legacy and outdated IT systems to improving cybersecurity posture, let’s take a closer look at how you can best use these free dollars.
Ensure Your IT Infrastructure Supports the Citizen Experience
According to NASCIO’s 2020 State CIO Survey, CIOs identified the increased attention on digital government services and citizen experience as top priority business processes. Using your relief funds to bring in technology experts that work with government organizations can help you get ahead of the curve. They can evaluate the health of your infrastructure and provide managed IT support.
Increase Bandwidth To Prepare for the Future of Broadband Deployment
The COVID-19 relief package has funds allocated to support more specific technology-focused areas. This includes $7 billion dedicated to broadband deployment for rural and low-income communities.
Money for these underrepresented groups can be hard to come by, so you can use these funds to proactively prepare. Increasing and improving your bandwidth will be key — extending your LAN or WAN, or even ensuring you are set up to provide high-speed Internet access to your stakeholders can help you prepare.
Follow the Lead of the Federal Government and Prioritize Modern Cybersecurity
One strategy for allocating funds is to follow the lead of the federal government. The COVID-19 relief package has allocated $650 million federal-level funds to support the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). As a result, federal governments will use the funds to focus on modernizing their cybersecurity approach.
To show a cohesive vision between various levels of government, state, and local entities would be wise. If you aren’t sure where to start, you can invest in cybersecurity advisory services that will evaluate your proficiency in core security areas.