Archived Story

Technological leap

Published 12:50pm Wednesday, October 10, 2012

WINTON – Hertford County local government is taking a leap into the fast-paced world of hi-tech gadgets.

After several months of discussion, the county’s Board of Commissioners agreed at its meeting last week to invest just over $5,000 in purchasing Apple iPads for each of the member of the board as well as the board clerk, board attorney and county manager.

Commissioner Howard Hunter III, a member of the board’s “younger generation” who is an advocate of taking advantage of modern technology, has been shopping around for the best prices for months in anticipation of his colleagues approving the measure. Prior to Hunter’s effort, the county’s best offer was $599 for each iPad plus an additional $89 for a keyboard/case/stand for each device.

Hunter’s search for a better deal produced a price of $499 per iPad plus $139 for a more durable “clamcase” Bluetooth compatible keyboard.

“We’ve been talking about this in an effort to move from paper to electronic devices,” Hunter said. “I called Apple directly and dealt with their division that serves government contracts and came up with what I think it a pretty good deal.”

Hunter said his deal will allow the county to invest in 3G iPads with double the memory (64GB) over the other proposal. He added that the deal was about $800 cheaper than the original proposal.

For the data, the county can share 10 gigabytes for $60 per month plus $10 for each additional tablet or choose to go on a state contract that offers unlimited data for $37.99 per iPad.

“We can always switch if we choose to go with the cheaper one and then find out that we need more than 10 gigs,” Hunter noted. “There is a one-year contract with the 10 gigs and no contract if we choose to go with the unlimited data.”

“I think we all agree this is something we need to do, to move in this technological direction,” said Commission Chairman Curtis Freeman. “What is the preference of the board as to which proposal we need to accept?”

Hunter made a motion to approve his level of pricing. Commissioner Bill Mitchell offered a second and the motion was approved by a 5-0 vote.

As far as to what level of data to use with the new iPads, the board agreed to give County Manager Loria Williams the authority to seek out the best deal.

  • ThomasJefferson

    This is a great thing!

    Think about it… If they are too busy learning a new tablet Operating system and once they do learn the HowTo they will download Angry Birds and play that 24/7….

    They will definitely be too busy to raise our taxes. Shoot we might even get them to lower the taxes if we help them achieve level 18 on Angry Bird Space.

    Think of the loss of productivity when they got Windows and found the internet and solitaire. (AWESOME)

    And now they can watch ANYTHING in HD at their desk :O~

    Party On!!!

    Suggest Removal

  • Skydrive6510

    What a waste of money! Each person needs an ipad…and I am sure these will get more personal use than anything else. The fact that they purchased ipads that are 3G compatible supports that assumption. Why not purchase the standard wi-fi ipad? If they are doing “county work” they should be somewhere they can connect to the Internet. No, they chose the more expensive model that allows them to connect to the Internet through cellular signal from any location. And data plans, if they can’t stay under 10GB of data a month they are doing some serious netflix watching on those ipads!

    Suggest Removal

  • concerned

    Just another waste of our taxpayer money on their play toys. What does anyone want to bet that they will use these iPads for personal use much more than for county business?

    Suggest Removal

Editor's Picks