2019 End of Session Wrap-Up: Information Technology

An overview of MACo’s advocacy on information technology issues in the 2019 General Assembly.  Information technology is a growing area of importance for MACo as county governments rely on computer systems of increasing sophistication for a widening scope of operations -- including public safety applications, open government portals, billing functions, and emergency alerts systems used during major natural and man-made emergencies. As county use of information technology evolves, cybersecurity and protection of resident data rise…

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Business Email Compromise – What You Need to Know to Be Protected

You get an email from your boss, it says "Sorry to bother you on a Saturday, but I need help with a time-sensitive project - could you please respond?" The email looks like it was sent from a gmail address matching your boss's name, and it says "Sent from my iPhone" in the footer...odd, but seems legit, right? Do you respond? Many people would, with possibly disastrous (and expensive) consequences. This is a frequent tactic…

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NACo Unveils Mobile App to Test Broadband Speeds

The National Association of Counties (NACo) this week released a mobile app, dubbed "TestIT,” geared toward providing accurate information when it comes to who has broadband — and more importantly who does not. Download the TestIt for Apple iOS Download TestIt for Android Test your connection in as many places as you can The TestIt app does not store personal data According to NACo: Meanwhile, representatives from the offices of Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and…

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Conduit Street Podcast: Committee Crunch Time, Public Safety Pop-Ups, and More!

MACo has made the podcast available through both iTunes and Google Play Music by searching Conduit Street Podcast. You can also listen on our Conduit Street blog with a recap and link to the podcast. You can listen to previous episodes of the Conduit Street Podcast on our website. Useful Links Previous Conduit Street Coverage: MACo NG911 Initiative Moves to Senate Floor Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Re-prioritizing Public Health: Counties Call for Increase in Local Health Funds Previous Conduit Street Coverage:…

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QAC Broadband Committee Presents Recommendations to County Commissioners

The QAC Broadband Committee this week presented their recommendations to the Queen Anne's County Commissioners. The Committee was formed to advise and provide recommendations to the County Commissioners on the provision of broadband services and infrastructure in Queen Anne's County. According to a press release: The committee recommended: That they hire a consultant to create a broadband needs assessment to provide a thorough unbiased approach to phasing in broadband to un- and underserved areas of…

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Conduit Street Podcast: Brinkley on Budgets, Amazon’s About-Face, Action on Airbnb, and More!

MACo has made the podcast available through both iTunes and Google Play Music by searching Conduit Street Podcast. You can also listen on our Conduit Street blog with a recap and link to the podcast. You can listen to previous episodes of the Conduit Street Podcast on our website.  

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Shutdown Snarls Rural Broadband Expansion

In today’s world, internet connectivity is no longer a luxury—it is a necessity. Access to affordable internet, broadband, wireless, and cellular services is an essential component of a county’s economic development and the socio-economic advancements of its residents. Residents benefit from increased economic growth, improved labor market access and outcomes, access to better health care, enhanced civic participation, enriched education opportunities, improved quality of life, and overall competitive and vibrant communities. And while there is…

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Conduit Street Podcast: 2019 Session Preview

MACo has made the podcast available through both iTunes and Google Play Music by searching Conduit Street Podcast. You can also listen on our Conduit Street blog with a recap and link to the podcast. You can listen to previous episodes of the Conduit Street Podcast on our website.

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2019 Legislative Handbook Series – An Indispensable Reference

The Department of Legislative Services has released its quadrennial Legislative Handbook Series, a deep and useful reference series that encapsulates nearly every issue of government at the state and local level. The series may be downloaded or viewed online for free at the links below: Legislative Handbook Series: Vol 1 – Legislators Handbook Vol 2 – Government Services Vol 3 – Revenue Structure Vol 4 – Budget Process Vol 5 – Personnel, Pensions & Procurement…

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Commission to Advance NextGen 9-1-1 Across Maryland Releases Final Report

Nationally,  the key underpinnings of the legacy 9-1-1 framework are based on the same wireline, analog, circuit-switched technology that was the foundation of the original 9-1-1 architecture in 1968. Aside from an enhanced data environment and the ability to support wireless and Internet telephony, the system has not significantly changed in more than 40 years. With advances in technology, the emergency communication networks built four decades ago are becoming less efficient, less technologically advanced and,…

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