New year starts fast

STEVE LESUEUR

March has barely begun, and already we're seeing a major shake-up in the telecommunications industry. SBC Communications wants to buy AT&T for $16 billion, while Verizon has offered $6.7 billion for MCI. Meanwhile, Qwest is still battling to wrest MCI from Verizon by increasing its offer to $8 billion.

Check out Staff Writer Roseanne Gerin's Page 1 story to learn what this means for the government market.

At the same time, the FBI is facing a do-or-die decision on its troubled Virtual Case File system. After five years, the FBI has spent more than $100 million to develop a case management system that may never work. FBI leaders say they will decide this spring whether to move forward with it or scrap it and start anew.

Wilson P. Dizard III's front-page story describes the painful lessons learned in this project, and the options now under review by the FBI.

Finally, our annual Who's Who in the state and local market report provides this year's most detailed analysis of the marketplace. Many top players are looking to expand market share by establishing new lines of business in such areas as transportation, Medicaid processing and homeland security. Want to know who is moving onto your turf? Read Senior Writer William Welsh's feature story, which begins on Page 18.

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