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The new digital service: Abortion info

Several states with Democratic governors have in recent weeks set up websites listing resources for abortion services, part of the ongoing fallout from the U.S. Supreme Court’s June 24 decision in Dobbs v. Jackson, which overturned nearly 50 years of federal protection for reproductive health services. California became the latest to do so yesterday, as Gov. Gavin Newsom announced the launch of abortion.ca.gov, which his office said features information about abortions, legal rights for in-state and out-of-state patients, payment options and a clinic lookup tool. The California site follows similar moves in New York, Connecticut and elsewhere. Benjamin Freed reports.

A Message From AWS Educate

With over 1,500 institutions and hundreds of thousands of students who use AWS Educate, we wanted to take you on a trip around the world and highlight how students are learning and innovating with the cloud. Learn more.

Some serious database misuse

A Virginia woman who once worked for an obscure state agency has been sentenced to nearly six years in prison for ripping off federal COVID-19 relief programs, federal prosecutors announced yesterday. Sadie Mitchell, 30, pleaded guilty in May to charges that between May 2020 and August 2021 she used her job at the Virginia Motor Vehicle Dealer Board to access government databases to pull various individuals’ personal identifying information and then used that data to file phony claims from several financial assistance programs implemented during the height of the pandemic, netting as much as $1.8 million. Ben has more.

On-time and on-budget isn't enough

Even though state governments constantly update their technology, the public mostly hears about it only when things go wrong. But completing projects on time, on budget and free from public derision is only a starting point, not a description of success. In interviews with StateScoop, state chief information officers shared their main considerations when trading in old IT systems for new ones. Security, data governance, business processes and user-centered design all add new dimension to what are already complex endeavors. Neglecting any of these, the CIOs said, won’t necessarily torpedo a project, but could push forward the date of the next critical upgrade. Colin Wood has the story.

Los Angeles superintendent gets emergency spending power

The Los Angeles Unified School District board yesterday voted to give Superintendent Alberto Carvalho emergency spending authority as the nation's second-biggest K-12 system continues to dig out from a ransomware attack. The incident, for which the Vice Society gang has claimed credit, is continuing to jam up school websites and applications, though in-class instruction has continued. The board's unanimous vote means Carvalho "may enter into any and all contracts” to procure “materials, supplies and professional services necessary to address the emergency conditions caused by the cyber-attack." Carvalho said he plans to issue regular reports on the spending, but KPCC reports that those statements won't be subject to the usual disclosure rules, which the superintendent said would reveal too much information to malicious actors. Read more.

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