Blunt spends $75,000 on office gear

Wednesday, March 23, 2005 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 1:53 a.m. CDT, Sunday, July 6, 2008

JEFFERSON CITY — Gov. Matt Blunt has spent about $75,000 on new computers and phones for the governor’s office, raising the total taxpayer cost for his office makeover to nearly $120,000.

Blunt’s information technology director said Tuesday the old computers dated to the mid-1990s and couldn’t support the latest antivirus programs and operating systems. The phones were last replaced in 1997.

“We have replaced outmoded or dysfunctional computer and telephone equipment,” said Blunt spokesman Spence Jackson. “Some computers in this office couldn’t even access the Internet.”

The $58,354 in computer equipment includes 28 desktop computers with flat-screen monitors, nine laptop computers, nine printers, four Blackberry wireless e-mail devices and two fax machines, according to information provided by Dan Ross, Blunt’s chief information officer.

The new telephones cost $17,620, but the state also saved $2,106 by canceling an annual maintenance plan that had been in place for the old phone system, said Nancy Bochat, the telecommunications manager in the Office of Administration.

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