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Governor Announces Partnership -- Saves Money and Improves Services

Press Release

Location: Helena, MT

Governor Brian Schweitzer announced today that State of Montana will be joining the Montana University System's ultra-high speed telecommunications network which will save the State $500,000 in annual costs. The University system is currently upgrading the network to support higher capacity and additional locations. The executive branch of State government will be joining that effort which will result in substantial cost savings. The University System and the State Department of Administration will begin to implement this project immediately.

"This agreement will not only save money but will help us be better partners tin serving the citizens of the state," said Governor Schweitzer. "The opportunities to collaborate on distance learning and research and development are important for Montana's future in economic development and job creation."

Integrating the State network with the University System's ultra-high speed network will produce:

Efficiencies/Cost Savings: Both the State and University System will reduce annual costs and at the same time increase available bandwidth and capacity on a shared "core" of their networks. The estimated State government savings will be about $500,000 per year.

Collaboration: This plan continues and expands a 20-plus year partnership between the State and University System on networking, and will increase opportunities for collaboration on distance education, IT operations, research and development. The enhanced network will also increase State opportunities for national collaborations and partnerships between federal, state, local governments, universities, and private companies. Finally, upgrading links in what are typically rural areas will expand partnerships between the State and local providers, allowing the State to expand its current very important role as an "anchor tenant" of telecommunications services in those areas.

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