Everyone is waiting to catch a glimpse at the light at the end of the tunnel that is the economic recession sweeping across the nation. When economists first predicted that the United States would be hit with a financial crisis, consumers, businesses and major corporations seemed to be a bit skeptical. It wasn’t until gas prices soared to almost $5 per gallon this summer when people started to pay more attention to their spending habits.
But perhaps when it become most apparent that that we were indeed in the midst of a serious economic meltdown, was when people all across the country began to lose their jobs, and major banks folded right before our eyes in September.
And now, two fundamental societal components are being affected: education and healthcare. State and local governments are now looking at budget deficits that range from $34 billion to $38 billion, forcing them to initiate revenue increases and cut these basic services.
According to a new report by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP), over 25 states and the District of Columbia have already made drastic budget cuts, reduced available reserves or increased taxes in order to bridge budget gaps. Moreover, at least 41 states expect to experience budgetary constraints through 2010 and beyond.
The report, “State Budget Troubles Worsen,” also unveiled that besides taking these active steps toward cutting budgets, state and local governments are also turning to Voice over IP (VoIP) technology.
“States spend millions of dollars annually on traditional telephone service. A conversion from old telephone service to PingTone outsourced Cisco (News - Alert) VoIP service can yield savings of 20 to 50 percent,” said William Smedberg, president of PingTone Communications. “The speed and size of these savings make a meaningful impact as states fight to close budget gaps and save critical programs.”
Headquartered in Northern Virginia's Dulles technology corridor, PingTone Communications provides outsourced (hosted) Cisco VoIP services to corporate, government and military customers in the United States and internationally.
Organizations can benefit from Cisco VoIP technology without the complexity or cost of managing these systems internally.
In collaboration with PingTone's global PSTN management, hosted VoIP applications include unified messaging, branch office 4-digit dialing and advanced call treatment functions.
Michelle Robart is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Michelle's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Michelle Robart