Officials planning Y2k emergency center (Madison WI) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

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September 20, 1999

Officials planning Y2K emergency center

Associated Press

MADISON -- State government officials don't expect any serious Y2K computer problems to surface in the state, but they plan to set up shop at National Guard headquarters on New Year's Eve, just in case.

``We are treating this as a potential emergency,'' said Beth Hastings, internal technology consultant for the state's Division of Technology Management.

Concerns about the year 2000 stem from computer programs that use two digits to designate the year. Programs could become confused when the year changes from '99 to '00, causing them to spit out bad data or shut down altogether.

After months of preparing for the date rollover, officials are expecting an uneventful night, interrupted only by periodic media briefings to announce that all is well.

``We all want to get up the next day and watch the Badgers play in the Rose Bowl,'' quipped Guard spokesman Lt. Col. Tim Donovan.

Beginning at noon Dec. 31, heads of all major state agencies will gather at the emergency operations center at the Department of Military Affairs in Madison for the 24-hour vigil.

Representatives of the governor's office will be there, as will officials from the Public Service Commission and the Transportation, Agriculture and Natural Resources departments, Hastings said.

Gov. Tommy Thompson has not determined where he will be on New Year's, spokesman Kevin Keane said Sunday.

Preparations also are being made in Dane County and elsewhere.

``We will not be partying; we will just be here,'' said Ray Pena, a planner for the Dane County Department of Emergency Management, where law enforcement, public health, transportation and water utility officials from Madison and Dane County will monitor potential problems.

Moving the heads of key agencies to emergency headquarters helps government authorities speak with one voice, avoiding a potentially chaotic situation, planners said.

-- Homer Beanfang (, September 20, 1999


Its good they have a plan (sort of - although insufficient, IMHO) BUT:

These government people seem to think "the public" hangs on their every word and thinks of them as gods (like they themselves do).

When/If TSHTF, help will be appreciated, but "speaking with one voice" to avoid "a potentially chaotic situation " may prove woefully irrelevant.

-- Jon Johnson (, September 20, 1999.

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