1256.1 Introducing Computer-Based Remote Services in California (Epilogue)
New, computer-based technologies offer the prospect of new ways for government to provide services for citizens. That was the hope of the director of the data center of California's Health and Welfare Agency when, in 1991, he developed a new interactive "kiosk" that would allow citizens to transact business with the state government without going to a government office. Licenses, permits and answers to questions could be obtained through a service which director Russell Bohart believed should "go where the people are, as opposed to making everybody come to government." In introducing the new system, however, Bohart found himself under pressure from state agencies which wanted to interactive technology to be located not at shopping malls and strip centers but in their own offices, as a means of replacing or supplementing employees. Bohart would have to decide which vision of his interactive kiosk was the right one and, if he stuck to his original concept, how to cope with the demands in conflict with it.