The federal government is putting an extra $200 billion into circulation because of the expectation people will keep more cash out of the bank and under the mattress later this year because of Y2K concerns.

Y2K has some governors planning to put National Guard troops on alert over the New Year's holiday to head off looting and mayhem.State consumer protection officials are certain the shadier elements of society will find ways to extract money from the fear-struck using Y2K scams.

At all levels of government, efforts to head off computer problems as 1999 rolls into 2000 represent the largest single-issue audit of American government and business capability in memory.

"You could come up with any number of metaphors that would express the enormity of this undertaking," said Don Meyer, press secretary for the Senate Special Committee on the Year 2000 Technology Problem. Sen. Bob Bennett, R-Utah, chairs the committee, which published an overview of its findings Tuesday.

The committee's first conclusion: sorting out the facts from the fiction is the major component to understanding the scope of the Y2K problem. The entire report can be seen on the Internet at

Utah's mainframe computer system crashed during its first Y2K test in December 1997, said state Y2K coordinator David Fletcher. But the machine didn't fall over and kill anybody and nothing blew up, so the test received little public notice. Other failures along the way have made it clear testing and fixing have not been a waste of time, he said.

A widely publicized story says a massive chlorine dump followed a Y2K test of the water system in a small Utah town. Another story said prison doors in Draper flung open when security computers were set ahead in a Y2K test.

The prison story is a myth, the state says, and the the chlorine tale actually had its origins in Australia -- not Utah -- and was a "what if" test that did not actually cause a chlorine spill.

Here is a synopsis of Utah Y2K initiatives involving government:

Governmental immunity: State legislators considered and then defeated a bill that would have expanded government immunity to cover Y2K issues specifically. The idea was to shield state, county and local government branches, special service districts and government-owned or -run facilities like public schools, colleges and hospitals. Similar laws have already been passed in six states and are being considered in 27 others. There are also Y2K immunity bills before Congress and a resolution that would make Monday, Jan. 3, 2000, an official New Year's holiday, extending the amount of time officials would have to remedy problems discovered over the weekend.

Military: Utah is not among the states tasking either the National Guard or the Army Reserve with a Y2K-related mission. But David Moon, the state's chief information officer, said a command bunker in the basement of the State Office Building will be fully staffed on New Year's Eve, monitoring law enforcement and emergency response activities around the state.

Scams: The Commerce Department plans a publicity campaign that will warn people about Y2K realities and myths so they do not fall victim to scam artists using Y2K to coerce people into buying goods or services that are either no good or that they do not need, said Francine Giani, director of the consumer protection division.

Hardware readiness: About 80 percent of the state's computer systems have been checked and declared Y2K compliant, a level of readiness ahead of all but 12 other states at this point. Fletcher said there are still significant problems with state-owned telephone exchange equipment and "imbedded systems" -- automated devices that control heating, cooling, security and other functions in state-owned buildings.

The state is keeping a list of "highly critical systems" that relate to benefits, public safety and health and revenue. Of those, unemployment insurance, Medicaid, public health testing and newborn screening and Tax Commission systems for sales, fuels and motor vehicle taxes are still considered at high risk.

The status of the state's Y2K checklist will be the subject of monthly updates from The Governor's Coalition for Year 2000 Preparedness, Fletcher said.

Tomorrow: Being prepared -- at home and elsewhere.