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Deloitte, NIC Build Ottawa E-Government Portal

[Ottawa, CANADA] Deloitte Consulting has been awarded the contract to develop the new City of Ottawa's comprehensive e-government portal.

The firm will join with National Information Consortium Company Canada (NIC Canada), a wholly owned subsidiary of Deloitte Consulting's alliance collaborator, NIC, to build and manage the portal.

The two partners will provide services and infrastructure required to develop and maintain the e-government portal, while the new City of Ottawa will retain ownership over, and control of, all data and portal operations.

The new City of Ottawa is an amalgamation of 11 municipalities and the Region of Ottawa-Carleton, slated to open its doors by January 2001.

The e-government enterprise portal will be a 'one door' Web-based gateway providing convenient access to services such as event calendars, permit filing, online retailing, facility reservations, city news releases, licensing, and parking ticket payments.

The plan is to eventually make these services available through library workstations and strategically located kiosks, as well as over the phone using Interactive Voice Response technology.

"The City of Ottawa e-government portal will enable us to meet the higher expectations of citizens and businesses in the Internet economy," said Louis Shallal, executive director of Information Technology at the Region of Ottawa-Carleton.

"By leveraging technology to serve our citizens, Ottawa will create a more efficient and responsive government that will ultimately lead to higher civic satisfaction at a lower cost."

The majority of the information and services on the portal will be free to the public, although some services will involve a convenience fee that will be used to fund the portal.

A third collaborator, Autodesk, will help to deliver certain map and tabular information by integrating the portal with the City's Autodesk Municipal Products applications.

In addition, Deloitte and NIC plan to leverage components of the comprehensive net-enabling software platform from iPlanet E-Commerce Solutions, a Sun/Netscape alliance, to provide scalability and performance for the portal.

"E-government is fast becoming a worldwide force of change," said Lee Tompkins, NIC Canada president. "Like Ottawa, governments around the world are embracing e-government as a necessary step in advancing the cause of citizen-centric government."

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