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‘Cutting edge’ UK councils to get £14m

'e-innovations' need only apply for grant

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The Government is to chuck £14 million over the next three years at local authorities to support "cutting edge" e-schemes - even though a third of councils admit they won't hit existing e-Gov target to get their services online by 2005.

Although full details have yet to be announced, the £14 million "e-innovations fund" - which is part of the wider £675m Local e-Government Programme designed to get all local authority services online by 2005 - will be used for advanced schemes such as e-learning, "emergent technology for better government" and bridging the digital divide.

Announcing the extra cash Local Government Minister, Phil Hope, said: "The £14 million I have announced today will go towards 'cutting edge' schemes which look
beyond the 2005 target.

"Councils are on the front-line of local government. We want them to be on the front line of technology as well," he said.

In July, a study by Datamonitor revealed that a third of local authorities believed they would not meet the implementation of electronic government (IEG) requirements by 2005. ®

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