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Y2K Causes Kids to Get Jury Summons
By Leonard Lee, Newsbytes
Monday, June 26 2000
Despite their legal ineligibility, children who have a Florida State ID card have been receiving jury summons notices in recent months due to an uncorrected, Y2K-related problem with the state's Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles database.
The root of the problem lies in a database conversion that occurred in September 1999. Some dates on file in the old database, including date of birth, only used two digits to indicate the year. "At that time, if the computer system didn't know if the first two digits of the year were supposed to be an 18 or a 19, it decided to assign 18 to that record," said Harry Scott, chief of the department's Bureau of Records.
"We later found out that we had issued state ID cards to some youngsters so that their parents could use the number on the ID card to apply for a handicapped parking permit."
The error caused the database to view the children as over 18 and thus eligible for jury duty. The State of Florida draws from information provided by the DHSMV's database to create its jury pool. "Right now we are trying to identify those records affected by this glitch and extract them from the database," said Scott. Scott did not know how many of the records were assigned an incorrect date.
Other children may find their lifestyle temporarily compromized thanks to another computer glitch involving Ohio Department of Human Services' computer system, which caused state workers to void and reprocess about 51,000 child support payment checks. The computer glitch, which affected the printing of the checks, caused some of the payments to contain errors.
"It was an issue of quality control," said Alicia M Gray, ODHS spokesperson. "Rather than take the chance of issuing incorrect checks, all the checks were voided and reprinted." According to Gray, the error will cause a slight delay in child support recipients receiving the payments. "Those checks that would have gone out on Tuesday went out on Wednesday instead," said Gray. "So there is a one day delay."
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