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Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders announces new working group designated to study AI use

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Little Rock, Arkansas – Governor Sarah Huckabee Sanders has established a working group to examine and evaluate AI’s possible impact on state government operations to make sure that the Arkansas state government stays up to date with its application as the technology develops.

“AI is already transforming the face of business in America, and Arkansas’ state government can’t get caught flat-footed,” said Sanders. “As we work to find efficiencies within state government, AI can play a role, with appropriate guardrails, in improving our level of service to Arkansans while keeping costs low. At the same time, we must prevent the misuse of AI to protect Arkansans. This working group will build the knowledge base we need to achieve those goals safely.”

Launched through a subcommittee of the Data and Transparency Panel (DTP), the AI & Analytics Center of Excellence (AI CoE) will take place during the organization’s second quarter meeting on June 27, 2024.

A press release from the governor’s office states that Robert McGough, the chief data officer for Arkansas, would serve as the chair of the AI CoE.

The working group will be entrusted with researching, assessing, and disseminating suggestions for guidelines and policies as well as developing procedures to guarantee that safety, efficacy, and ethics are carefully taken into account when AI is used safely within state government.

To promote awareness of AI and potential hazards, the AI CoE will also evaluate and rank a variety of experimental projects.

Additionally, the group will develop safe implementation procedures for the new technology.
The broad guidelines of the AI CoE will encompass a multitude of considerations.
Accountability (truth and precision), suitable data sets, independence, prejudice, moral application, ownership of intellectual property, privacy and security, and transparency are a few of them.

According to the AI CoE’s criteria, which include data availability, demonstrable value, alignment with state priorities, stakeholder buy-in, and secured finance, the two initiatives have been categorized as leadoff AI use cases.

Project 2 is Recidivism Reduction (Arkansas Department of Corrections), and Project 1 is Unemployment Insurance Fraud (Division of Workforce Services).

Unless the governor decides to prolong or cancel it, the AI CoE will run for a year from the day of its creation.

The group has scheduled monthly meetings and by December 15, 2024, it will submit a report to Governor Sanders.

Progress on its proof-of-concept projects and pilot use cases will be covered in the report.

Efficiencies, cost reductions, safety, and economic development will all be given a lot of weight in this report.

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