More Ohioans Conduct Business with Government Online

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Nearly 3.6 million adults in Ohio go online to conduct business with government offices, finds a report from Connect Ohio. That number represents 47% of all adult Internet users in the state.

Some 38% of Ohio Internet users go online to search for information about government services while 31% use the Internet to apply for government services or fill out forms at government websites, says the report "Making Government Accessible: e-Government Usage in Ohio" from Connect Ohio.

“With a large amount of government services quickly transitioning to online formats, it is encouraging to see a growing number of Ohio Internet users utilizing them,” said Stu Johnson, executive director of Connect Ohio. “Unfortunately, many Ohioans are excluded from these services due to lack of available broadband services or adequate digital skills, with concentration in the most vulnerable populations that these services are intended to serve. To keep pace with the twenty-first century, it is important to ensure that all Ohioans have the skills and access to equipment in order to take advantage of these services.”

E-Government use has increased among veterans and adults with disabilities, roughly 385,000 of the former and nearly 630,000 of the latter who rely on the Internet to find information and interact with the government agencies.

Additional key findings from this report:

  • 54% of adult Ohio Internet users who have attended or graduated from college say they go online to access e-Government applications while only 34% of those with no college education do.
  • More than half who report an annual household incomes of $50,000 or more say they access e-Government services, which is higher than all other income groups in the state.
  • Younger Internet users (50% of 18-to-34 year olds) are more likely than their older peers (46% of ages 35 or older) to go online to search for information, apply for services, or fill out forms.
  • Across the state, more than 1.2 million households still do not subscribe to home broadband service; one in eight cite a lack of digital skills as leading barrier to home broadband subscription.

Connect Ohio, a division of Connected Nation, describes itself as a technology organization committed to bringing affordable high-speed Internet and broadband-enabled resources to all Ohioans. Connect Ohio is a nonprofit, technology-neutral public-private partnership.

SOURCE: Connect Ohio.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
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