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Warning given over delivery deadline ...
Warning given over delivery deadline

Councils need to do more if they are to meet the 2005 deadline for delivering all public services electronically, the Audit Commission has warned.

The report published yesterday revealed that more than half of the work to deliver the government's e-strategy was only started in the last 12 months, although the scheme is already at the half-way point. It also found one in five councils could not name a single successful project they had achieved.

Councils said they were being held back because of a lack of skills and understanding, and insufficient capacity.

Peter Thomas, director of performance development for the Audit Commission, said: 'Given this, it is unsurprising that councils are making slow progress and that some key challenges are emerging.'

However, 78% of councils still felt confident they would meet the deadline.

For a copy of the LGC market report: e-government, contact Sarah Wightman on 020 7874 0347

E-mail connects Knowsley kids

Knowsley MBC has introduced e-mail addresses for all its pupils and teachers.

The council has

more than met the government's deadline that half of all school children and staff should have access to e-mail accounts by September this year.

Pupils, teachers, staff and governors can also enter chatrooms to discuss school-related work and issues.

Haringey lets HR contract

IT specialist Pecaso UK has been appointed by Haringey LBC to computerise its payroll, recruitment, training and administration services.

The contract is to help the council meet the government target to have services and processes delivered electronically by 2005.

Pecaso, which has worked with Lincolnshire CC, Southwark LBC and Salford City Council, will introduce a system called mySAP HR.

Simon Bradley, Pecaso's public sector managing consultant, said: 'We are pleased to be a part of the government's e-business initiative. There is no reason why the public sector shouldn't be as leading edge as private companies.'

Tenants use TV to get service

Tenants in Camden LBC will be able to report repairs and access housing and welfare services through interactive TV.

The service was launched this week after Camden agreed a deal for subscribers to Homechoice digital service, which is run by local TV station DKTV.

A similar service was launched in Newham LBC in 2001 and research found 70% of users were satisfied with the service.

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