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Weaver heads east

Washington Chief Information Officer Jim Weaver will soon step down to take a role as the CIO of North Carolina, both states’ IT departments announced Wednesday. Weaver originally came to Washington after three decades with the state government in Pennsylvania. In North Carolina, which has seen several CIOs come and go over the past two years, Weaver will be tasked with, among other things, improving broadband access throughout the state, Gov. Roy Cooper said. Colin Wood reports.

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Login.gov finally goes local

A limited number of state and local governments will be permitted to use login.gov, the federal government's single sign-on program, with their federally funded programs, the General Services Administration announced yesterday, FedScoop's Dave Nyczepir reports. The COVID-19 pandemic and other crises have prodded GSA officials to look at expanding login.gov‘s authentication and identity proofing services, so people can more easily and securely access their benefits. Read more on FedScoop.

The disinformation fight continues

While Ben Hovland, chairman of the U.S. Election Assistance Commission, called 2020 "the best administered election I’ve seen in my career," during a panel discussion yesterday, he and other speakers said election officials' fight against disinformation is not going away. Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, who received death threats sparked by false claims about election results, said a hand recount under the state's new audit law helped dispel those lies and rumors. And other speakers, including Microsoft cryptographer Josh Benaloh, said there are web tools that can help reassure voters their ballots are counted. Benjamin Freed has more.

Virtual jobs board was key in New Jersey's pandemic response

As thousands suddenly lost their jobs at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic last year, a “virtual bulletin board” created by New Jersey’s Office of Innovation rapidly drew thousands of unemployed residents to open positions in some of the state’s hardest-hit industries. The site enables companies impacted by the COVID-19 crisis to list job postings for “immediate hire,” and at its peak listed 53,000 positions, officials said. Ryan Johnston has details.

The data is still pretty messy

From the onset of the pandemic, governors and mayors wasted no time in arming themselves with data and dashboards that they used to illustrate the severity of COVID-19, explain public health measures and even win awards for good TV. Yet nearly a year into the crisis, there are still big gaps in the quality of many states' pandemic data, especially when it comes to measuring COVID-19 by race and ethnicity, and that has consequences, said Dr. Joshua Sharfstein the vice dean for public health and community engagement at the Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health. "We miss important aspects of the crisis," he told StateScoop. Read more.

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