County’s IT Fiefdoms Remain a Big Money-Sucking Problem

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County managers keep trying to get their hands around the massive information technology challenge that comes with running a $6 billion agency.

But so far, they aren’t having much luck.

Years ago, during one of many countywide reorganizations, information technology was decentralized with individual departments all doing their own computer thing. Then the county was re-centralized and a deputy chief executive post was created for information technology.

But the mini-fiefdoms were never dismantled.

The result?

Nearly $50 million in no-bid contracts floating all over the county bureaucracy.

Two large projects updating software at the assessors’ and auditors’ offices have both gone over-budget and taken much longer than originally expected.

County CEO Tom Mauk told supervisors this week that he’s planning to have a staff retreat to talk out the turf issues. No idea yet of where the retreat will take place. Or how much it will cost.

Mauk told supervisors he’ll be coming back with those details soon.



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