States are starting to feel more confident about their finances as they country continues to recover from the recession, but that doesn’t mean budgets are loosening any time soon, said Scott Pattison, the executive director of the National Association of State Budget Officers.
Within those budgets, it appears technology funding is increasing every year, but it’s a pretty difficult statistic to measure given the federated nature of how IT is accounted for across state agencies, he added.
“We expect that budgets are going to be tight for a long time,” he told StateScoop in an interview.
“So when we look at information technology as finance and budget officers, what we want to see is IT be a really critical tool to try and increase efficiencies and provide better results and better customer service at the state level, and at the same time over time, save money.”
But states don’t necessarily have the upfront funding to invest in IT, despite the fact that budget officers are looking for innovation with technology to eventually result in cost savings down the road.
“That’s kind of the unfortunate drawback. We don’t have a lot of up front money, though we really want to see information technology innovation have a big impact. [Budget officers are looking at] alternative ways to finance information technology through savings that may occur.”