In Vermont, IT shops work autonomously

Bob West, Vermont's assistant chief information officer, has been involved in state systems for more than 20 years. He's worked at several agencies, including the Personnel Department.

By Claire E. HouseGCN StaffWEST: The Chief Information Officer's Office provides oversight to agency information technology departments, but we don't have direct control over IT budgets. We serve in a regulatory, advisory function for the state.We are, however, involved with all of the IT projects. We review the requests for proposals, we're involved with the contracts, and we sign off on all of the projects.Under state statute, we produce the IT Five-Year Plan each January. The plan is based on input from the agency departments.We also testify in front of the General Assembly about IT. And since it's only myself, CIO Patricia Urban and an administrative assistant, we're a lean and mean shop.There's a group called the IRM Advisory Council that meets monthly. It's made up of people from various agencies, and Urban is the chairwoman. The group sets the policy and standards for information, whether computerized or not.The Communications and IT Division, within the Buildings and General Services Department, is Vermont's centralized mainframe shop. It does other work for departments such as setting up LANs, Microsoft Windows NT systems and e-mail clients. But it's just like any other company when it comes to that additional work. It bids for the work just like any consultant out there would.Most agencies handle their own IT. We have a total of about 230 IT professionals who work for the state of Vermont, and they're dispersed throughout the departments.That's something that happened actually when PCs started to become prevalent. Many of our applications went from the mainframe to PCs and client-server systems, and it was much easier to do that work at the local level.Our mission has always been to try to improve services for state government and our citizens'and with some cost efficiency.We have several IT projects going on.We're about to launch a financial management system from PeopleSoft Inc. [of Pleasanton, Calif.], which will replace a 20-year-old accounting system. It will handle procurement and budget forecasting as well. The Department of Finance and Management expects to implement the system by June 30 of 2001.The Libraries Department is going through an upgrade. It's replacing all its older VAX terminals with an NT system.Our Personnel Department had a PeopleSoft Human Resources Management System implemented in 1994. This year, it plans to upgrade the system to run current releases and provide some additional reporting.The Tax Department is in the last phase of implementing an Advantage revenue system from American Management Systems Inc. [of Fairfax, Va.].The Corrections Department has been running primarily a character-based terminal application for years; it's going to a graphical user interface system. It's actually deploying a thin-client solution this year using MetaFrame from Citrix Systems Inc. [of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.]. The Health Department is switching to thin clients, as well.One of the things we also do in the CIO's Office is manage a statewide network for government, GOVnet, and one for schools, K12net. Most of the lines are at 10-Mbps or T1 speeds. Many of our schools have 56-Kbps right up through T1 frame relay connections.We've just implemented an Integrated Services Digital Network dial-up system for state government. It uses the new IP Routing Service from Bell Atlantic Corp.We have always offered dial-up solutions, but until this point they were analog.Each of the departments pays a certain percentage to support GOVnet, and that funds the service. It's statewide, so it's a local call for anyone who's an end user on our system.As a statewide initiative, a lot of the agencies and departments are looking at Web applications and electronic commerce to see what's going to make sense to them. We hope that within the next couple of years, all of our applications will be Web-based.Obviously e-commerce is the way of the future, and the Internet and intranets are certainly the easiest ways to deploy applications today.Technology is going to change rapidly over the next few years, and we're keeping an eye on what's up and coming.Technologies such as wireless communications and digital broadcasting are going to change the way we do business.
Assistant CIO says state's mission is to improve services at an efficient cost






Vermont agencies and departments are considering the feasibility of Web applications and electronic commerce options as technology rapidly changes state government, says Bob West, the state's assistant chief information officer.


Bob West, Vermont's assistant chief information officer, has been involved in state systems for more than 20 years. He's worked at several agencies, including the Personnel Department.

West has been assistant CIO for two years and reports to state CIO Patricia Urban, who was appointed by the state secretary of administration. He talked with GCN/State & Local about the state's systems plans.












Central shop







Who's In Charge


Patricia Urban

Chief Information Officer

Bob West

Assistant Chief Information Officer

IT SPENDING







Source: Vermont Chief
Information Officer's Office











State of efficiency
























MAJOR DEPARTMENTS


Education'Supports state education

Employment and Training'Handles work force support operations

Motor Vehicles'Handles vehicle and license registrations and renewals

Social Welfare'Supports family and Medicaid services

Taxes'Handles revenue operations


MAJOR PROGRAMS


Digital dial-up'Provides Integrated Services Digital Network dial-up service to state agencies

Financial management'Will handle accounting, procurement and budgeting

GOVnet'Wires state agencies

K12net'Links schools

Personnel'Will upgrade personnel system

















X
This website uses cookies to enhance user experience and to analyze performance and traffic on our website. We also share information about your use of our site with our social media, advertising and analytics partners. Learn More / Do Not Sell My Personal Information
Accept Cookies
X
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Do Not Sell My Personal Information

When you visit our website, we store cookies on your browser to collect information. The information collected might relate to you, your preferences or your device, and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to and to provide a more personalized web experience. However, you can choose not to allow certain types of cookies, which may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings according to your preference. You cannot opt-out of our First Party Strictly Necessary Cookies as they are deployed in order to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting the cookie banner and remembering your settings, to log into your account, to redirect you when you log out, etc.). For more information about the First and Third Party Cookies used please follow this link.

Allow All Cookies

Manage Consent Preferences

Strictly Necessary Cookies - Always Active

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data, Targeting & Social Media Cookies

Under the California Consumer Privacy Act, you have the right to opt-out of the sale of your personal information to third parties. These cookies collect information for analytics and to personalize your experience with targeted ads. You may exercise your right to opt out of the sale of personal information by using this toggle switch. If you opt out we will not be able to offer you personalised ads and will not hand over your personal information to any third parties. Additionally, you may contact our legal department for further clarification about your rights as a California consumer by using this Exercise My Rights link

If you have enabled privacy controls on your browser (such as a plugin), we have to take that as a valid request to opt-out. Therefore we would not be able to track your activity through the web. This may affect our ability to personalize ads according to your preferences.

Targeting cookies may be set through our site by our advertising partners. They may be used by those companies to build a profile of your interests and show you relevant adverts on other sites. They do not store directly personal information, but are based on uniquely identifying your browser and internet device. If you do not allow these cookies, you will experience less targeted advertising.

Social media cookies are set by a range of social media services that we have added to the site to enable you to share our content with your friends and networks. They are capable of tracking your browser across other sites and building up a profile of your interests. This may impact the content and messages you see on other websites you visit. If you do not allow these cookies you may not be able to use or see these sharing tools.

If you want to opt out of all of our lead reports and lists, please submit a privacy request at our Do Not Sell page.

Save Settings
Cookie Preferences Cookie List

Cookie List

A cookie is a small piece of data (text file) that a website – when visited by a user – asks your browser to store on your device in order to remember information about you, such as your language preference or login information. Those cookies are set by us and called first-party cookies. We also use third-party cookies – which are cookies from a domain different than the domain of the website you are visiting – for our advertising and marketing efforts. More specifically, we use cookies and other tracking technologies for the following purposes:

Strictly Necessary Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Functional Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Performance Cookies

We do not allow you to opt-out of our certain cookies, as they are necessary to ensure the proper functioning of our website (such as prompting our cookie banner and remembering your privacy choices) and/or to monitor site performance. These cookies are not used in a way that constitutes a “sale” of your data under the CCPA. You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not work as intended if you do so. You can usually find these settings in the Options or Preferences menu of your browser. Visit www.allaboutcookies.org to learn more.

Sale of Personal Data

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Social Media Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.

Targeting Cookies

We also use cookies to personalize your experience on our websites, including by determining the most relevant content and advertisements to show you, and to monitor site traffic and performance, so that we may improve our websites and your experience. You may opt out of our use of such cookies (and the associated “sale” of your Personal Information) by using this toggle switch. You will still see some advertising, regardless of your selection. Because we do not track you across different devices, browsers and GEMG properties, your selection will take effect only on this browser, this device and this website.