N.C. unholsters new handgun permit system

Three years ago, North Carolina CIO George J. Bakolia, then CIO of the state's Justice Department, faced an IT crisis. Several experienced employees were nearing retirement and only they understood the inner workings of the state's data infrastructure.

Bakolia decided it was time to start modernizing the legacy Cobol applications running on aging mainframes. The first upgrade project, a pilot of the revamped Concealed Handgun Permit system, has begun. The department uses the CHP database, which resides on a Unisys 2200 mainframe, to track the handgun permit process.

The pilot CHP app uses RescueWare from Relativity Technologies Inc. of Cary, N.C., to create a browser-accessible Java interface to the Cobol data. The CHP middleware is CandleNet eBusiness Platform from Candle Corp. of El Segundo, Calif., which uses Extensible Markup Language for data exchange.

The state's 12,000 law enforcement officials now can do background checks more efficiently, Bakolia said.

Users can access the database from a notebook PC, a personal digital assistant or just about 'anything except a toaster,' Relativity's chief executive officer Vivek Wadhwa said.

About the Author

Trudy Walsh is a senior writer for GCN.

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