A few months ago I tried to get a Blue Card from DLNR to do some weekend work as a surfing instructor for a friend's surf lesson business in Waikiki. The Blue Card, issued by DLNR, is the permit that allows people to legally do surf lessons in Hawaii. Without it you get fined or locked up. No joke. So I looked at the requirements on the DLNR website, got my CPR card renewed, took a physical and went to their office to take their OPEN BOOK test for my Blue Card.
I was told that DLNR could not administer the OPEN BOOK test or issue any Blue Cards because a) they lacked personnel, b) there was a one year waiting list of people to take their test and c) they didn't have accurate records of who had blue cards already.
Okay, this could EASILY be solved with a database (MySQL or whatever), online login, online testing, and sync the database of test results and login information back through Access for internal viewing and validation in the DLNR office. Confirmation could even be automated after a candidate takes the online test. Fail and you have to retake the thing. Pass and bring in the printout of the confirmation with supporting docs DLNR. They pull up your name using a little customized Access software tied to their database, scan your docs as a PDF and add them to your file and voila---instant blue card with a complete record in the system for reporting and no extra work for the staff, waiting lists for OPEN BOOK tests or citizen frustration.
This isn't developer brain surgery. Many states already use a similar system for traffic school.
We have some smart people in this discussion group. I'd be interested in reading some creative solutions to this and other issues. Maybe we can reverse engineer some of Hawaii's systems so they are on par with the rest of the world. "That's just how things are here" is not an acceptable answer.