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Frank A. Douglass Insurance Agency

Many State Departments Using Outdated Software

Look in most any home in Michigan with a computer, and you’ll find software that’s far more advanced than what is used in some state government departments around the country.

For example, the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs told lawmakers in Lansing last week that the system used to sell and buy liquor in Michigan, called “COBOL” was first developed in 1959, and there’s only one employee left in state government who is qualified to maintain it.

State officials say an IT upgrade is needed, and it could be paid for by a proposed 50 percent license fee increase for alcohol permits in Michigan.

That proposal is now before legislators.

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