Governor Jim Douglas celebrated the State’s ranking as one of the ten best government portals and websites in the nation by e.Republic’s Center for Digital Government. This is the second year in a row that the Vermont Information Consortium (VIC), the State’s web portal vendor, has received this recognition. The Digital Government Achievement Awards (DGAA) go to outstanding websites and web portals at the state, county and city levels.‘In the coming years, it is important that we continue improving how state government interacts with Vermonters and visitors over the web. Through Challenges for Change and other efforts across state government we are looking to increase web utilization to both save taxpayer money and deliver services more effectively.’‘It is great news that the State’s e-resources are being recognized as among the best in the nation,’ Governor Douglas said. ‘In the coming years, it is important that we continue improving how state government interacts with Vermonters and visitors over the web. Through Challenges for Change and other efforts across state government we are looking to increase web utilization to both save taxpayer money and deliver services more effectively.’e.Republic judged websites and web portals from across the country on their functionality, efficiency and innovation. VIC ranked as a finalist in the 2010 Best of the Web State Portal Category. According to Cathilea Robinett, executive director of the Center for Digital Government, ‘The winners’ innovative use of the Internet to continue delivering citizen services despite tight fiscal constraints is inspiring. This skilled use of the Web embodies the spirit of the Best of the Web awards and provides examples to state and local government leaders around the country on how to bring quality services to their citizens while containing costs. We applaud all of you for your creativity and your dedication.’David Tucker, the Commissioner of the Department of Information and Innovation and the Chief Information Officer for the State, said: ‘Winning recognition once is notable, but winning two years in a row is remarkable. With the number of exciting initiatives currently underway, we hope to see VIC continue to be recognized for their outstanding work on behalf of the State of Vermont.’According to its website, the Center for Digital Government (www.centerdigitalgov.com(link is external)) is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. The Center is a division of e.Republic, Inc., (www.erepublic.com(link is external)) the nation’s leading publishing, research, event, and new media company focused on information technology for the state/local government and education sectors.For more information about the awards visit www.centerdigitalgov.com(link is external)About Vermont.govVermont.gov (http://www.Vermont.gov(link is external)) is the official Web portal of the State of Vermont. Vermont.gov is managed through a public-private partnership between the State of Vermont and Vermont Information Consortium, the Montpelier-based official eGovernment partner for the State of Vermont. The company builds and manages interactive government services on behalf of the state and is a wholly owned subsidiary of eGovernment firm NIC (NASDAQ: EGOV).About NICNIC manages more eGovernment services than any provider in the world. The company helps government communicate more effectively with citizens and businesses by putting essential services online. NIC provides eGovernment solutions for 3,000 state and local agencies that serve more than 97 million people in the United States. Additional information is available at www.nicusa.com(link is external). Source: MONTPELIER, Vt.–(BUSINESS WIRE)-9.15.2010
After missing the third test, Russell was charged, tried and sanctioned. It is now obvious that JADCO views a 12-month ban as inadequate, and, apparently feels that since another Jamaican cricketer, Odean Brown, received a 15-month ban in May of 2016, a more lenient sanction has the distinct possibility of cricketers and athletes in the JADCO testing pool believing that missing three tests in any 12-month period, can be “explained” and leniency applied. Missing three drug tests in a 12-month period, when the athlete has an opportunity to change the predetermined venue and time of the test if he/she finds physical reasons why the date and time submitted three months previously no longer applies, suggests either blatant disrespect for anti-doping rules or a deliberate missing of the tests because of nefarious reasons. The appeal, therefore, seems to be justified, and JADCO should be commended for its efforts to ensure that the use of drugs by Jamaican athletes will never be tolerated or excused and that the internationally agreed anti-doping rules are scrupulously maintained by Jamaicans and Jamaican authorities. It should never matter who the athlete is. If the rules are broken, and a hearing before an independent panel finds the athlete guilty, then the sanction must never ever be determined by the popularity of the athlete. Two sporting organisations have come in for recent criticism that may have been unfortunate, in my estimation. The Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) has been receiving flak in some sections of the media because of its decision to appeal the one-year ban imposed on cricketer Andre Russell, after an independent tribunal found him guilty of missing three drug tests in a 12-month period. First of all, JADCO can appeal any doping, related sanction that it finds too lenient or incorrect. Also, this is not the first time that JADCO has appealed a doping-related sanction. Having noted all of the above statements, it is therefore mandatory that a careful review of the transcript(s) of the hearing brought by JADCO to the disciplinary panel be done. Then and only then could the researcher(s) decide if the appeal by JADCO bears any merit. The facts, as determined by the panel, were that Russell was not present at a prearranged address when the anti-doping team from JADCO arrived to conduct a test. The date and time of the test were selected by Russell, as per a form submitted by the athlete online every three months, outlining a one-hour window where he would be available for testing. If, prior to the date of the test, Russell finds himself unable (for whatever reason) to be present at the designated address in the one-hour time slot he previously indicated, he can change the time and place where he will be available. Having missed the first test, Russell was informed and the seriousness of the ‘error’ explained. When another test is missed in the 12-month period, another warning was issued to Russell. Broken rules 12-month ban The group of headmasters of our secondary educational institutions in charge of sports, ISSA, have decided that an Ugandan athlete, who, through a concerned Kingston College alumnus, gets a scholarship to continue his education in Jamaica, has been given permission to represent his school in the upcoming Boys and Girls’ Athletic Championships later on this month. This has resulted in an uproar from coaches, who believe that ‘rules’ were broken by the school/athlete and that ISSA’s approval records a grave inconsistency in the attitude of that body when ‘rules’ are broken. As I understand it, the athlete in question was registered as a student at the school prior to his arrival in Jamaica from Uganda. He left Uganda two days before the deadline for arrival in Jamaica having understood that his trip to Jamaica requires him to be in transit in Germany in order to connect with another carrier on his trip here. Information from German authorities indicated that he did not need a visa, if he was in transit. However, on his arrival at an African airport, the airline carrying him to Germany insisted on him having a visa and refused to carry the young man to Germany. He therefore had to return to Uganda and begin either to get a visa (apply) or find another route to Jamaica that would not include landing in Germany. This took some days, therefore he arrived in Jamaica after the deadline imposed by ISSA for students, transferring from other schools to be eligible to represent their ‘new’ school in ISSA-controlled sports. ISSA listened to the reasons for his late arrival and apparently concluded that his late entry to school was plausible, and his participation in Champs approved. The fact that this Ugandan child is not only a straight-A student, but also an exceptionally gifted middle-distance runner and can potentially win 18 points for his school at Champs, seems to be the real reason for the objection, mainly from rival schools. Once again, ISSA has ruled in the interest of the child, and not in the interest of the competing schools. Bully for them!