X-Prize: $25,000 To Fix California's Problems

X-Prize: $25,000 To Fix California's Problems

California Democratic Assemblyman Mike Gatto is offering a penny for your thoughts–actually, 250,000 pennies–in a new X-Prize bill he is sponsoring.

Capitol Public Radio reported that the proposed legislation will reward citizens $25,000 if they can solve specific problems or come up with an innovative idea to streamline government. X-Prizes have become a popular incentive device to inspire employees in private industry to help their employers solve various company problems. 

Gatto has created a pilot program that would go into effect in 2015. “I imagine somewhere in Silicon Valley there’s some young guy or some young gal who has some really neat, new application to streamline California government,” the congressman asserted. “And I think for the renown that would come with winning this contest, and the small prize, I think that person would probably give us that intellectual property.” 

According to AB2138, the innovation contests would be open to all residents of California who are not employees of the state. Specifically, under Gatto’s bill, $75,000 would be allocated for the prizes and there would be three winners each would receive up to $25,000. The X-Prizes have been introduced on the federal level as well.