[blank audio] Good morning. Is this on? Good morning, can you hear me? It seems like it’s on. They can’t hear they said. They said I should get up close and personal. Can you hear me now? They can’t. Can you all hear me back there? Can you all hear me? [background chatter] Can you hear me now? Can you hear me now? Thank you. We’re gonna go ahead and start. We’ve got another couple of committee chairs up here so I wanted to wait until they got in here, but they said I needed to be up close here. I wanted to remind you all that these little things on the table are, when they are red they are not on. If you want to talk turn them green. If you’re afraid you’re gonna say something and it’s gonna go out to the world, then you might wanna keep them on red but that’s up to you, but that’s what they’re there for. I’ve got to tell you about our pages this morning. We’ve got two, Alexis if you would tell us something, I think I’ve got you, Alexis Powell from Greenville and Don Davis is her sponsor. [SPEAKER CHANGES] My name’s Alexis Powel. Don Davis is my sponsor and I’m from Greenville, North Carolina and I’m a senior in high school. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Welcome. Glad to have you here. We also have Drew West from Buckham County and Michelle Presnell is his sponsor. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Hi, my name’s Drew West. I’m from Buckham County. I’m a junior this year and I’ve always been involved in state government. I just wanted the experience here. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Welcome. Glad to have you here. Hope you learn a lot today. Also the Sergeant at Arms today are Barry Moore, okay, from the House and BH Powell from the House and we have Charles Marcalis if we need a football player and we need a saxophone player we’re good. Thank you. Good to have you here too. Jim Hamilton, too, also. Welcome. They help us this morning. Okay, we’re gonna be having William Taubes show today again. He’s starting out again talking about AOC again, so welcome. Oh, do the chairs have anything to say? Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. [??] Oops, no, that’s my [??] . We’re gonna go back through the technology part of the presentation yesterday. We got a couple slides in and I cut out all the administration parts leading up to this. [SPEAKER CHANGES] And if you have questions during the time just raise your hand and we’ll recognize you inside, okay? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, ma’am. So, technology is again a major part of the administrative budget. It’s about 64% and we saw this slide yesterday. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Sorry, do I need to speak up? Can you all hear me? Okay, I’m very sorry about that. We’re apparently having microphone issues. All right, so we went over this slide yesterday. This is the technology services division at AOC. I did want to point out again that the application development section is the software development section, so those 83 FTE are responsible for the I guess around 14 major systems, software systems that AOC, that AOC supports, has created and supports for people in the court system. This does include those legacy systems, so AOC does have to hire people with very specific knowledge of older computer languages to help handle the ASIS and the SMS system which has created some challenges for them. The 61 FTE for the infrastructure and operations support, those are the help desk people, the people that come out and put computers on desks, the people that deal with the actual hardware of the computer system and then there are 3 FTE for planning in the technology services division. Let’s see, I’m not getting ahead of myself here.
Yesterday we talked a lot about the ACIS system and the financial management system. These are legacy systems that… let’s see… that look like that. That’s the ACIS clerk component, and this is the slide that we stopped at yesterday. This is… there we go… legacy system facts. 1.2 million transactions daily in ACIS. 2.2 million filings in fiscal year 13-14. 2.4 million dispositions that year. ACIS was first implemented in 1982 – we did talk about that yesterday – and spread to 99 counties by 1990. The CCIS-CC, which is providing a new updated frontend and more database capabilities, but still using some of the ACIS database, was first implemented in 2006. I don’t think this issue got pointed out well enough yesterday: ACIS has… there’s some quality control issues that AOC has brought up in terms of entirely moving ACIS to a new system. There’s so much data in ACIS that to move all of that data to a new system, there is a certain level of corruption that may result, and auditing that data to find the corruption will create a whole new level of challenge in terms of moving the entirety of ACIS to a new system, so I do want to keep that out there, that there are some concerns with completely abandoning the ACIS database, just because if you’re a criminal and your record gets corrupted, then that’s probably good for you, but it may not be good for the rest of us, so… and I think… I didn’t mention my facts about FMS. Sorry about that. FMS was created somewhat later, but there was a statewide rollout in ’91 through ’95, which is not very much longer than the statewide rollout for ACIS, and FMS is the major bookkeeping software used throughout the court system, so we’ll be talking about dispersements from AOC later today, but more than 740 million in 13-14 flowed through the court system and was tracked by the FMS system. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] When these systems were first developed, did any federal money play a part in this? Was there the Crime Commission or any federal moneys at all used? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. I do not know the answer to that and I will have to get back to you. I will discuss it with AOC. They’re shaking their heads “no”. Oh, they’re saying they don’t know. The problem with reaching back to 1982 is that there’s not a lot of us who have the answers. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We won’t go there. I’m sorry. [SPEAKER CHANGES] If you could, we would like to perhaps get some information from other parts of the country, other states that may have gotten federal grants to update their systems. Just check into that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. Yes sir, I will. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Randleman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. On page 7 in bold print, that says the AOC has quality control concerns regarding replacing ACIS. Could we have them elaborate on that as to what those concerns are in a little bit more detail? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there someone here who can speak to that? Jeff Marecic, please. Identify yourself. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Marecic, CIO for AOC. I don’t know if I would have bold-faced it. It’s not a concern that would prevent us from moving forward with it. I think what Mr. Childs is pointing out is that there are millions of records in the database that we call IMS, and we will need to move that to a new database, and when we move that, sometimes the formats change and those kinds of things, but it’s a very
The whole thing of what technology does when we modernize it, so the rule’s a concern there but it certainly is not a road block at all. We have process in place to deal with that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I know when DHHS was getting their new one and they were supposed to stop at some point because your laws were doing every day and I know it’s taken them a long time and a bunch of money, so I can understand your concern on that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, yeah. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Can you elaborate on, you said that that is not a road block for moving and followers? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well, as we move from the legacy software, so it’s, the programming language is called [??] and the database is called IMS, it’s a different way of storing data. When we move to the new systems, the programming language for the most part is called Java and the database is called DB2, which is a different way of storing data, and so, and a different way of accessing data, and so when you move it from the one type of database to the other type of database, sometimes you have to change how that database is accessed, some are keyed, sometimes the data formats are different. For example, the way newer databases store numbers is somewhat different than others, and so we’ll just have to. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I understand [??] this committee are not gonna be [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So what I’m saying is do we have plans to replace that and if so how does that fit on your priority list. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We do have plans to replace ASIS and the part that we’re talking about right now probably is one of the last parts that actual physical movement of the data today. We have ways of accessing the data where it exists so we are concentrating on the funding, the screens, then the functionality, get that worked over and then at the last stage, then we’ll move the data over. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] time. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The timeframe really depends on how the priorities plan out. If we were to focus on that project solely right now that would probably be a 6, about a 6 year project. Now we have it laid out in stages. Now that’s assuming current technology and current resources to do that. If there was no additional resources it would be able to move a little faster. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative Boles. [SPEAKER CHANGES] In [??] have we developed this [??] ? If we could write it and design it [??] early in the morning on [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, I, yes we designed that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I guess I, my concern is the, when you do a [??] to this and I see maybe to 8 years to [??] to take a look in 6 years. I think what was said. [??] [SPEAKER CHANGES] Identify and. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I’m sorry. [SPEAKER CHANGES] [??] again. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just another comment. I don’t need anything else. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, all right. Senator Newton. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chairman. So these questions are [??] about senator before you leave. I listened to the [??] . This is just the [??] discuss the interfaces [??] help with all of it, not just the [??] part of it. What is your response to Senator Randleman’s [??] I’m not sure [??] yesterday I couldn’t hear. I actually, maybe this is for Joe Smith. I’m not sure. I don’t see him here today, so how long has there been a determination that agencies needed a [??] ? How many years has that been that AOC made that determination. [SPEAKER CHANGES] By yourself. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Murray, Chief Information Officer
AOC. The first component of CCISCC, which is one of the systems that is replacing ASIS, was released in 2006. So the need to replace ASIS was, a decision was made some time before that, maybe a year or two before that so that that first release was built. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So if I understand correctly, and I realize this predated your presence at AOC, it obviously predated most of this committee's appearance here in General Assembly, I won't tell you about what I was doing in 2006 but if I understand you correctly then at least ten years ago a decision was made by AOC that gauges needed to be replaced. Is that correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Correct. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I would call confident and I thank you, sir, for answering the question. I'm sure I'm thinking the same thing that everybody in this room is thinking, everybody around this table is thinking. A decision was made ten-plus years ago that gauges needed to be replaced. Ten-plus years ago there wasn't all this budget cutting going on. Ten-plus years ago, apparently we had plenty of money to spend on the court system. I wasn't here but there was a lot more money then than there is now and here we are talking today about it's going to take six years, from whenever we hit the go button, to replace ASIS. So we're going to be, what, 20 years into the process of replacing the system by the time we put the system in place, it's going to be time to replace that system? [SPEAKER CHANGES] It's a big concern. Do you have a comment? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes. Jeff Murray, CIO, AOC. During that time, Senator Newton those are good observations, during that time let's also remember that other systems have been developed and implemented. For example, the NCAWARE project, so as the ASIS replacement project got going, the NCAWARE project was also became a higher priority. So there had been some resource shifts in order to get that project done as well, eCitation was another project that came through at the same time. So it's not as if all the resources were focused on just replacing ASIS. There were a number of other projects. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, just a moment, and I just want to remind anybody speaking that we're being recorded and we need to know exactly who you are speaking each time so please introduce yourself. Okay, let me go to Senator Jackson. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. My understanding from listening to Jeff was that he said it would be in six years to replace ASIS if they devoted all of their technology resources to that, which they certainly can't. So we were looking at a situation where it's six years in the best of all best case scenarios. I'd like to loop in Mr. Tom Murray. He sent all of us an email specifically about this and I just had a chance to look at it this morning, most people probably haven't, I was just wondering if you could elaborate a little bit on this topic since you sent all of us an email on it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Senator Jackson. Thank you, Madam Chair. Tom Murray, I'm Chief Legal Counsel of Governor Affairs for AOC. There has been much progress made on the replacement of ASIS using the CCIS technology, it's undergoing. If you look on the slide that I presented to you yesterday in the email, there is a slide that shows you the road map to eCourts, which is essentially where we need to go and what we've accomplished thus far. There's a significant amount of resources being allocated with the existing appropriations to help replace the green screens in every court house in the state of North Carolina and the public access for criminal records will be rolled out statewide in June. So you'll be able to go to a courthouse and search criminal records, instead of a green screen with a web based, parameter based computer screen, which is a completely, it's a major shift, replacing those green screens, to help attorneys and help folks in clerks offices. But I don't think it's a, I wouldn't say that we haven't done anything. We've made some significant progresses on transitioning from ASIS to CCIS that helps out the district attorneys, that helps out the clerks. I think if you asked the clerks and the DA's how much change has been made from an IT perspective for them to be able to do
do their job, they will say that it's a dramatic shift over the past six years and so I think those are some constituents groups you might not want to consider talking to about this on the changes that have been made. But we also respond to the general assembly, so when you want us to roll out pay and fee ticket, we did that. We did it faster than you asked us to and we did it, instead of doing a pilot we rolled it out statewide faster than you asked us to. And same thing with NCAWARE and real-time access to CJLEADS. We respond to the General Assembly. When you ask us to do something, we do it, and that occupies time and resources. So we will follow your direction on be able to, if you want to make ASIS a priority, that's probably $100 Million conversation. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Representative Turner. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Representative Turner ??, and I wanted to know from Mrs. ?? if the availability of resources to work on more than one system if possible at this time and maybe I didn't read it ?? because I'm not talking about money but is there, technologically, a way to update more than one system at a time, ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Murray [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Murray, Chief Information Officer, AOC. We always have more than one project going at one time. As a matter of fact, as we speak I think we have about ten or twelve various projects going. We're always working on all of our systems. We have updates and enhancements to CISDA, we have those to CC, we have those to a lot of our interfaces and a lot of other systems. Now, one of the interesting dynamics here that I think is important to talk about is of the resources that Mr. Childs mentioned a little bit earlier, about the number of staff people we have, approximately 85-90% of those folks are dedicated to make sure that the applications that we have in place today are working. So that when you come into the office every morning they, your screen, gets you to where you need to be. That leaves about 15% of our available staff, our permanent staff, to work on enhancements. And so, if we look at that 15%, those are the ones that are dedicated to enhancing or modernizing ASIS and systems of other applications. Now, when we have a budget cut, when we reduce our budget by $500,000, that results in positions and so me, as the CIO, I have a responsibility to make sure that when all of our users and our constituencies come in to work their applications work. So when I make cuts, I have to make cuts to certain less critical parts of the organization and so I really can't do much cutting on the operational side. So that 85% has to be there so that everybody could work. So where those kinds of cuts come from are from the 15%. So as we reduce that , our ability to work on more things diminishes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So the four people that left were all in technology? [SPEAKER CHANGES] They were all in technology and they were all only in our application group, that's our analysts and our developers, came from that part of the organization. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there any effort to ?? at this time, I know we're concentrating on ??. [SPEAKER CHANGES] We don't have a plan right now for FMS. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Representative McNeill. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, this question will be also for you. I know one of the considerations, not only with the current ASIS system, FMS or whatever you want the security, have you had any particular challenges in going from the green screen to a web based as far as security. I know security is a big part of these records, we all talk about availability of records but we want what is available to also be secure. How are we handling that? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Murray, CIO AOC. Thank you for that question, Representative McNeill. You're right. One of the things, one of the advantages, if you will, of the green screens and that type of technology is that it's been tried and true from a security perspective for
for a very long time. It’s a very secure environment to keep things in. As we move that functionality to the web-based systems, we do have an increased security concern, and part of that 85% of our resources that we talked about were the security team, a number of folks, to make sure that we have the right security measures in place, so it is an elevated concern for us that we are addressing, and you’re right; we have to take that very seriously. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Has that in any way impacted your timeline in rolling this out? Has it slowed you down, had no impact? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Well… Jeff Marecic, CIO to the AOC. It’s another concern that we have to build in to our application, so when we develop a new module, we have to be sure that we keep information security coding practices and networking practices in place, so it is another step in the process that we have. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Any other committee members have any questions? Senator Newton. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just for… I appreciate your comments before, and I’m really pleased that there at AOC, we’ve had that conversation. I’d like to invite you and to sit down privately and talk offline about the speed at which AOC rolls out things like eCITATION and how quickly they can process credit cards and so forth because your view of the speed of things is quite different from mine and I know a number of members on this committee. I’m certainly not speaking for all members on this committee. I think it’s important that we all face the reality of where we are today. Part of fixing the problem, in my view, is going to be looking at “How did we get here?” Not for the purposes of blaming people who don’t work at AOC anymore or anything like that, or blaming the legislature for not giving good priorities. It’s got to be “How did we get here?” so we know where we’re going. I think everybody around the table, I think I’m speaking in a way that… maybe not the tone, but the ideas that anybody can agree with. My question to you, and perhaps you may need to speak to the rest of your staff, is… and this goes back to the same question I think has already been asked. Exactly where in the priority list, if AOC were making all the decisions with no direction from the legislature… in other words, if the legislature isn’t meddling in the decision-making process – I put it that way on purpose… where would replacing ACIS be on the priority scale? Would it be first or would it be third? Would it be… for example, would it be the only thing that AOC would concentrate on until they got it done and then move on to other things? That’s what I want to know. [SPEAKER CHANGES] It’s been an ongoing top priority for many years, and my name’s Tom Murry; I’m with the AOC as Chief Local Councilor of Government Affairs. This roadmap to eCourts, I’m going to go back to this chart multiple times. I ask that you look at it. The green boxes have been accomplished. These green boxes are steps on replacing ACIS that AOC has been undertaking. Going through the rest of this presentation, you can see the before and after green screens that we have already developed. We are there. We are. It is a top priority and it’s… when you’ve got a system that was built the year that Senator Jackson was born, you’ve got developers who are in that retirement phase, and it’s harder and harder to find those folks and keep those folks. It is a top priority to replace that system so we can have a modern system that any developer coming right out of school can work on, versus a legacy green screen. So now we’ll say they’re cheap to operate. No bandwidth. With browser-based systems, you increase the need for bandwidth. There’s a whole ‘nother cost structure associated with. You’ve got to have more servers and all the infrastructure that goes around that. So we could probably do it faster; it would increase out maintenance and equipment needs, and so we’ve tried to be responsible with the resources that you’ve been generous to give us, but we have made accomplishments, and I would argue… I would say that it’s our top priority to replace ACIS, and I think like I said, when you talk to the constituent groups that actually use this system on a daily basis, they will tell you the progress that we made over the past six years. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up.
So when we replace ASIS, do I understand you correctly that the ongoing development will be done in-house as far as customized software development and so forth, is that correct? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. Thank you, Senator Newton. Tom Murray with AOC, under the current structure, the answer is yes. If we wanted to go to a vendor-based solution, and that's the choice that needs to be made, significant capital investment to be able to do that because a major transition, we would need to use a vendor that is stable. We can't be changing courthouse vendors every five years and we would cease all modernization efforts of ASIS at that point. Now, that's a decision point that needs to be made and at this point we, based on the existing, I'll another variable to this equation, stable funding. We can't have a vendor-based solution that has a precarious funding stream because I can't just pull the rug out and say, "Oh, by the way, our technology budget got cut this year and the vendor contract has to be renegotiated." That's going to be difficult. So a stable funding source and we would cease all modernization efforts and start the transition, which is probably a three to five year transition, from migrating all data from the existing Legacy systems to a vendor-based solution. But that is a decision point that needs, that would alter this time frame. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Murray, would you agree with me that a stable funding paradigm would be just as important for the AOC software development office as it would be that you have a vendor who runs the new system? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Murray. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I would argue that's correct. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, in other words, the question of funding is really an irrelevant question because you got the same dynamic whether you do in-house development and software writing, and pardon my tongue-in-cheek expression, pretend that you all are savvs and do it yourself as opposed to hiring somebody else to do it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Murray. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Senator Newton. Thank you, Madam Chairman. And the fewer resources we have for in-house management, the slower the progress goes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm just going to make a comment, I feel that the Chairs definitely need to meet with AOC, with Mr. Murray and Mr. Marecic, I think we definitely need a meeting together. Senator Randleman and then Senator Jackson. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. It's not that we want to seem argumentative, we don't meant o attack anyone, that's not our purpose. Our purpose is to plan for making important determinations about appropriating the money that we will have for our KCS budget and if we're given a target to reduce then we have to know where can make those reductions that will have the least impact on those things that we need to serve. So, Mr. Marecic, I have a couple questions about your ??. Now, in the staffing for technology, do the application, people that work in application development, salary-wise where do they rank on that salary schedule? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Marecic, introduce yourself. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Marecic, AOC. The, if I understand the question right, you're asking how much a developer gets paid. That ranges based on the experience level but anywhere from the developer perspective, the people that write programs, probably in the $70,000 range up into $100,000 a year. In that group we also have what we call business analysts, the folks that don't actually do the programming, that help with how things should flow and those sorts of things. Those, again there are different levels there, starts at around $50,000 and goes up into the 70's or 80's scenario. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, according to Beacon, you have 83 people who are in application development, you have 61 people
who work in infrastructure and operation support which ??, manages, and provides support for hardware in the outfit. And then you have three people who work in planning and management, or project planning, project management and quality assurance. So, that's a little bit different than the 85% and then 10%. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yeah, sure. Jeff Murry, CIO AOC, the categorizations, I think, that happen in Beacon are a little different than what happens in practice. We have, we look at our organization a little bit differently than Beacon does. We have a project management office, which would be some of those planning people that you're talking about, that has about eight or nine people in it and there are certain classifications. We have a set of business analysts that are in the group and are about 25 or so of those. We have developers, the people that actually write the code, and we have somewhere int he neighborhood of 45 or 50 of those, and then we have our infrastructure people that take care of all that other stuff. And so the way we have our organization laid out, it's based on technology process versus the classifications in Beacon. So there's a little difference in how we look at it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So you're looking at ?? and we're looking at money. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So of these 83 people who are doing application development, those are probably, those are higher paid individuals? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Jeff Murry, AOC, there's a mix of the business analysts that are at the 50-60-70 range and there's a mix of the developers as well. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So are those people in the 85% or the 15%? [SPEAKER CHANGES] They're in both. Jeff Murry, AOC. When we look at maintaining systems, there are a lot of activities that go along with that. Such as every night we run extra and jobs to feed other systems. We feed our data approximately 30 or 40 other organizations. So some of those developers are involved in that process as well. [SPEAKER CHANGES] One more. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So we keep information, I'm kind of a black and white kind of person, I don't really see stuff in grey, ??. So you ?? thinking, right? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, I'd like you to break those divisions down for me in that 85% and that 15%. Provide that to me and the other members electronically. I don't expect you to do it this morning but I'm trying to see ?? breaks down ??. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Randleman, thank you. A lot of that 15%/85%, as you know, some people wear both hats. [SPEAKER CHANGES] That, I didn't ask about that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm sorry, okay, she just needs it. You'll send it to all of us, we'd appreciate it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay, thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I've got Senator Jackson first and then Senator Lee. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. Senator Newton mentioned SAS and I just wanted to point in a quick comment that SAS was actually a vendor that AOC contracted with to develop a database called CJLEADS that's mainly used by law enforcement but has been deemed highly, highly successful. So there is some precedent for relying on vendors to produce these kinds of databases. It seems amazing to consider that we would have the entire wholesale transition of ASIS occur in-house but maybe it's possible. Just a quick question for Tom Murry, sir, on the one hand your talking about the transition that's been made away from ASIS and it's been the top priority for several years and looking at your slides it looks like there's been progress. On the other hand, you're saying it's a $100 Million job. I was wondering if you could kind of bridge that disconnect. What would we need to spend another $100 Million on? How do we complete this job? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Certainly, and we're having a conversation with the governor's office right now about the potential for being a court bond being included in the bond package and so that's, and we are trying to help and have a conversation with members of the legislative leadership as well to talk about just exactly, if we wanted to move at breakneck speed to have wholesale replacement and get the equipment upgrades, Kentucky, Kentucky did a courts bond to a much smaller judicial brand than ours
It was a $28 million bond. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Follow up. [SPEAKER CHANGES]So we're looking at what other states have done from a rapid reset of our technology perspective on the court, on the judicial branches in trying to look at what North Carolina can learn from those states through the National Center of State Courts and how we can, if a major cash infusion came into the court system for massive upgrades, how long would it take and how much would it cost. We're developing an answer to that question, and right now the floor, and just in my mind, we're starting at $100 million. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Okay. And Mr. Lee? [SPEAKER CHANGES]I have a question. I apologize for not being here yesterday, I had to attend another committee meeting so if this was thus answered, I apologize in advance. Does the AOC and then as a subset IT have a strategic plan that they developed and followed so that we could actually kind of open that up and look at what the priorities are and where you want to go? And then as new people come on board, like Senator Jackson and I, we can kind of see where you've been and where you're trying to get to and how that all plays in? [SPEAKER CHANGES]I think to ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES]Thank you Madame Chairman, thank you Senator Lee. I'm Tom Rowe with AOC. I think that's road mapped to eCourts, like I'm gonna keep on coming back to this because that's where we ultimately want to go, to the direction of the Chief Justice, we want to see an eCourt's initiative. Part migrating away from ASYS is part of that because you'll have better data submitted in a better way to more parties and ASYS cannot function in an eCourt's environment and we know that. [SPEAKER CHANGES]All right. [SPEAKER CHANGES]I'm sorry. My question is just a little bit broader than ASYS. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Sure. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Is there an actual kind of strategic plan that identifies priorities moving forward and what needs to be accomplished to get there so that as we go through this process, we can understand as we're developing the budget and going through, we can kind of see long term where we're going. So, if there was a strategic plan back in '06 and someone said it was going to be ten years, we could say, wait a minute. And I don't know what happened in '06, but is there like a plan like that, a written plan? [SPEAKER CHANGES]Certainly. Madame Chairman, with your indulgence, I might ask John Williams, Senior Deputy Director of AOC to help address that question. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Okay, introduce yourself. [SPEAKER CHANGES]Thank you, Madam Chair, John Williams, I'm the Senior Deputy Director at AOC, been there for about two years, and Technology's one of the divisions I oversee. I really welcome this conversation, it's been a long time coming, and we're all on the same page, Senator Newton, about our priorities. When I came in, I reviewed things like the Gartner study that was done in 1999 that set a course forward for AOC. There was a strategic plan most recently done with an outside consultant, MTG Consulting, I believe is the company, in 2006 or '07. And there was supposed to be a five year plan, but we're really still, this ASYS thing is part of what was in that plan and should have been completed by now. In coming in, I agreed with the findings of PED study that was published at the end of 2008, that said that we needed to strengthen our budget and project management controls. A number of initiatives were undertaken at that time that did that, but I was not satisfied when I arrived that we had gone far enough. We had had a leadership change in our Technical Services division, we did a nationwide search, chose Mr. Merisik who moved here from Oregon after a successful career there, ten years running their pension plan, IT, completely modernizing that system, on time, within budget. It impressed me and AOC a great deal what he had accomplished there. One of the recurring themes Mr. Murry mentioned is stable funding, the actual Center for State Courts emphasizes the same thing. That MTG study laid out a strategic plan for these activities and the legislature in that same time frame, 2006, '07, '08, massively increased the technology funding to AOC. And in, I guess, 2008 and '09, most of the money was taken back as you responded to the crisis caused by the recession, and most of that money was never committed, people were not even hired. It was for not people who were dismissed, that was personnel money for people who were never even hired. I want to say 60, 60 or so people were hired to carry forward this strategic plan, and they were never even brought on board, because of the response to the recession. Now, in that time, we should have created a new strategic plan that made some assumptions about what a stable funding environment or an anticipated likely funding environment would be, and we should have sat down and had that honest discussion and all been on the same page. And I think we're certainly ready to do that with you now, and I like
the idea of sitting down and talking that through with the chairs so that we can all see eye-to-eye, but the money was there briefly and then was pulled back. The ASIS replacement, as one of many projects, is a $25 Million project. We've spent between $800,000 and $1.2 Million over the last eight years or so, seven years, pursuing that, and that leaves us far, far, far from the finish line. As you know, in other parts of state government, the approach to IT has shifted to large project funding that is reportable to the appropriations committees to say within this agency, this single large initiative will have its own budget and will be reported back to the committee individually. We are not there. We have one technology budget and we've been trying to break out some resources within that technology budget for these new development projects. I hope that kind of clarifies where we got, how we got to where we are today. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Lee [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just a quick follow-up to, I appreciate your comments but, so the last strategic plan was done in '06? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Yes, Senator Lee, and that was a consultant driven plan. We are branched with over 500 elected officials and we have been putting together a new governance structure that involves each of those constituent groups. Susan Frye, Clerk of Superior Court's, serves in our technology committee to develop that. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm not blaming anyone for anything. [SPEAKER CHANGES] No, no, no, sir. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm just trying to ask the questions. That's, I understand that completely, can I make a comment? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Lee. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, when there's a, so I'm new here, so from a strategic planning perspective in just the private sector, typically the plan is done and then it's not put on the shelf, it's reviewed every quarter and updated and as these things happen and as happens in state government, there's changes, you've only been around for two years, that's the one common thread that I think folks like myself can use to review to see where things have gone. And then when budget cuts come, that strategic plan is altered so that we know when we cut a budget, that we are going to cause a ten year delay on something that may be vitally necessary. Otherwise, it's really hard for me, I'm probably not the sharpest knife int he draw, but it's really hard for me to conceptualize where we've been and where you want to go so that we know how to get there. So I would ask that someone dust off the plan, you said you're working on a plan, but if a plan is actually established part of that plan would include how you utilize that plan going forward in the future, updating it quarterly and modifying it so that there is some common thread through the years that we all can kind of look at. Just a comment. [SPEAKER CHANGES] I would say, thank you, thank you all. I would say we definitely need to go forward, not look back so much now because we can't change what the past has been. We need to go forward with a plan and we need to work together. So I'm hoping that we will get that done this year. I know when I came in 2007, and I have been here longer than some of you all, Leo was here then, but we had $2 Billion extra instead of deficits. We had $2 Billion and they had to have all these new projects. That's when we got the East Carolina Dental School, for instance. Then other things that had to be had, so you grab the money when you can, so because then it did, it went downhill from there and we have been struggling, all of us, since then. But we need to be sure if we do go with any kind of outside person, company, that we need to know their history because we do not need what happened to DHHS to happen to JPA. Okay, yes, Rena. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Quick question, Rena Turner, representative from District 84. I'm interested in knowing the list of companies that they see overnight he's talking about, I think he said about 30 companies or transactions that they have to complete overnight. If we could have a list of those. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just get us all that list, that would be great. Thank you very much. Okay, anyboody else? I'll give you another chance. Okay, William, back over to you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. I think a lot of this may have been covered in the discussion. The others, let me know if I'm starting to, if I'm going back over ground bits you don't want to hear about anymore. Okay, we'll just, this points out that the CCIS is a major project that is undergoing right now and that AOC is moving towards an ?? project
I have a few screenshots of the CCIS. This is a front-end system right now. I believe there's a database associated with it but it also does feed off of ASIS. Beyond this, I've listed a number of AOC's other applications NCAWARE is a statewide warrant repository that works in a real time. This is mostly used by local law enforcement and magistrates. I'm sorry, I guess I should talk about everything on that page, eCitation, talked about this a little bit, this is also used by local law enforcement to see citation information. I'm sorry, can you all hear me? Okay, sorry, eCitation is a joint venture with state highway patrol, feed information into ASIS. It was the first of its kind in 1999 and the discovery automation system feeds information to the DA's. Also payNCticket, online citation payments and the magistrate video project is a relatively new project to allow magistrates to communicate through video with local law enforcement, which may solve some of the problems with getting magistrates in to the right place at the right time. So this was piloted in 2012, at the end of fiscal year 13/14 it had been implemented in 39 districts and counties, excuse me. And this is a map of where it is and where it is going as of January of this year. So there's a lot of roll out here. There are some counties that have chosen not to participate and I can keep you all apprised of what's going on with this project, too. This will probably help alleviate some of the magistrate problems though, in some of the more far flung counties. Further AOC technology, this is mostly civil technology. There's the VCAP, which is the civil case processing system, there's eFiling, which was piloted in 2009 and did not have a lot of success. It was rolled out in Chowan, Wake, and Davidson Counties. There were 1,993 eFilings, files that had been used in that system between 2009 and 2014, however, Alamance County piloted a domestic violence eFiling project that has been far more successful since Alamance County rolled it out. They've had 3,410 files sent through the eFiling system in one year. AOC is using what they learned with Alamance County to roll out eFiling and start moving that towards doing that statewide on the civil side and then I think they were going to push to the criminal side after that. There are also Casewise and Jwise, are two management systems that AOC supports. This is a map, I believe it's in Representative Murray's presentation, showing technology facilities throughout the state run by AOC. This is a graph of AOC's technology services budget history. The 14/15 numbers do not take into account the reserve that was still in place, which is why they may seem high for that time. So there was a question asked yesterday about the $500,000 cut and we will cover that when we follow-up with AOC. Finally, challenges with AOC technology. I sort of feel like this may be redundant. We've just talked about there was a lack of vision in the 2000's, ??, and a lot of new systems were built but did not seem to be a major overarching push to replace the old systems. The stagnation is visible to the public, although we hear that the public is going to be using a new web based system. At this time, in court rooms across the state, the public goes in, they use ASIS, they want to find something, they're dealing with the mainframe. I do what to make a point that the older technology is very useful for people who have been doing it for a long time and I'm sure the clerks know that people have gotten used to ASIS and FMS, can do it without even looking at it, however, in terms of new hires and
when we talked about the turnover in the clerk's offices yesterday I think they find that very counterintuitive and technically it's what I have to say about technology. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. Senator Newton has a, pass first, okay. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. The, William, if I could, I may have missed this from yesterday, I'm not sure if it's been explained, the DCIS system that ??, is that built on ASIS or is that something totally different? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. It is totally different but it does use a, so it provides both a front-end for information that is already in ASIS and further database capabilities that beyond what ASIS can do. So it was intended to replace ASIS at first and I believe at this point it is kind of in the in-between stage where it still uses ASIS for some functionality and it has a separate, more modern database for other functionality. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So, and if you can answer it, good, if not, we'll turn to AOC, but so CCIS is built in such a way that whenever we migrate away from ASIS it should be able to make the transition and continue to be a useful platform? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. Yes sir, that is my understanding, that CCIS will outlive ASIS. [SPEAKER CHANGES] The, follow-up? The public defender's office, I noticed in your slide and I thought I had understood, is on CCIS, have you gotten any information from AOC about why that would be necessary for a public defender's office to be ?? mainframe system? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. The General Assembly put a provision in the 2012 budget directing AOC and IDS to work together on a more updated system for IDS. They were still using the case management system, which is a legacy system, much like ASIS and the FMS. So the CCISPD, I believe, is a new project that has not gone very far. I believe they are still in the process of hiring people to handle that. So, yes? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Let me, maybe I didn't ask my question very, very well to get at what I'm trying to find out. So how many, what was the largest number of employees in the largest public defender's office? How large of an office are we talking about? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I'm afraid, I see Tom Maher back there, I'm afraid, Madam Chair, I might have to ask him if he knows. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Tom Maher, please. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Tom Maher, Executive Director of IDS. Our largest office is in Mecklenburg and I think there's int he neighborhood of 60-plus employees there. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. And so, thank you, Mr. Maher, and I may have another question for you, ??, the follow-up is that's the size basically of a large law firm or medium sized law firm, depending on how you want to look at it, what I don't understand is why that needs to be, why that law firm needs to be connected to the mainframe database systems? Most law firms are not connected to mainframe databases ??. They email the state but they aren't wired into to the same systems and I understand the public defender's office has the ?? and basically it's a publicly funded criminal defense office, firm, if you will. And so my question is why is that necessary? Why is that, what is the benefit of doing it that way as opposed to buying and operating a stay in the line case management software like every other law firm in the state of North Carolina? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Maher, do you have an answer? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Tom Maher, Executive Director of IDS. The benefit, Senator Newton, is that the data which is used by the public defender's is automatically downloaded from ASIS, and ultimately whatever replaces ASIS. So in the morning, the public defender's office, which, and some of them get hundreds of cases in a day, they don't have to do the data entry and the only data I believe they enter is the name of the attorney which then gets pushed back so the court system automatically gets the attorney's name. And so there is a benefit to having very rich
data very quickly without the cost of support staff entering that data into the case management system. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Is there a program or a plan under way to provide that kind of efficiency for all of the private counsel who are assigned as defense attorneys? [SPEAKER CHANGES] There is not, Thomas Maher, Executive Director of IDS. There is not, we had looked in to, when I first started working, whether we could develop, for example, online fee application systems that would be populated from that information. I think there is a concern, and I will let AOC address this, the private lawyers don't do just court-appointed cases. They also obviously do retained work and the AOC may have contracts about criminal record searches, for example, that they would be reluctant to have the retain counsel get the same access that the public defenders who have no retain counsel. But the short answer is, and it may also be a resource issue, that there's no plan at this point to create a similar case management system that appointed private attorneys could use and get the same benefit of the data. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Do you want this answer now or do you want him to send it to us? Okay, follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So what I'm interested in knowing, have there been any kind of those cost-benefit analyses done to determine whether or not it makes sense from an efficiency/cost standpoint to maintain public defenders offices on this mainframe database case management system that we're trying to implement versus a standalone case management software that essentially might be able to be ?? and customized like all other law firms in ?? trying to do. Has anybody done any kind of cost-benefit analysis, do we even have an idea how much more or less it's costing us through the mainframe approach as opposed to off the shelf standalone. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Maher. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Tom Maher, Executive Director of IDS. When the General Assembly indicated that AOC and IDS should split the cost of replacing the existing CNS, the first thing we did with AOC is to issue an RFI to look at private vendors to find out what was available in the marketplace for replacements. The problem turned out that all of them charged significantly more than the cost of basically taking CCI's DA and changing it to work for the public defenders. Now, all of those vendors, and I think this is true in most public defender systems, interact, their software's designed to interact with the court systems and to download that type of data. So in most situations where you've got a statewide or a large scale public defense system, there are case management systems just like DA's case management systems are designed to interact with the court system. So we have never looked at, because we've always had CMS, we've always had that interface, what would it cost to stop having that interface, spend less maybe for a case management system, but then have support staff who had to get the information and put it into the system. We've never done that study because CMS has been around for a very long time and we've had that interface. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] So the short answer is there's an assumption that there is an efficiency ?? but there has never been any analyses? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Correct, Tom Maher. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Okay. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Follow-up on a separate matter. I thank you, Mr. Maher, I appreciate your information. The video, the national video system slide, there were a number of counties, and if this was covered yesterday and I missed it I'm so sorry for that and you can tell me later. But, why are the ?? others doing it, especially counties that have been in the same judicial district? I'll use as an example my home, Nash County, is in it but Edgecombe and Wilson are not. Why is that and is that a problem or a concern? [SPEAKER CHANGES] I would have to ask AOC about that. I don't know enough about that [SPEAKER CHANGES] Mr. Murry. [SPEAKER CHANGES] At the end of the day, Tom Murry, AOC, at the end of the day it's a decision by the chief district court judge and law enforcement officers that it's a preference that they not use that at the local level and this is an example of AOC not being heavy handed and forcing local jurisdictions to change their course of business even when it might produce efficiencies. If they don't want to use the technology, we don't force them to do that. We support, AOC supports that local jurisdiction, only 39 have chosen not to use it and it's been a pretty quick uptake. [SPEAKER CHANGES] One last follow-up
real quick, if I could. Could you tell us what any or some of the reasons are why they don’t want to do it, why their choice…? I’m trying to imagine why it would be there. [SPEAKER CHANGES] It’s across the board. I think it’s a little bit of self-preservation and adversity to change, and so if they think they need four magistrates… and I think there’s a concern that if we get too efficient, you’ll take away some of our magistrates. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Senator Randleman. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] Thank you, Madam Chair. I believe that that is a statewide system, the discovery automation system. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? Yes, it is a statewide system, and it’s ?? [SPEAKER CHANGES] It’s being recorded. Just wait just a moment to answer. Just wait just a moment. [SPEAKER CHANGES] ?? It’s another one of the systems where we provide for people, and if they choose to use it, then they use it. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Do we have any more questions? Representative Boles. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Just a comment. For the last two days, it’s kind of interesting that having ?? to have a statewide unified court system. What I’ve been hearing for the last two days is that the local are developing their own to solve their own problems in this ??. Going down from the state down, it seems like the counties are solving their problems and it’s coming from the bottom up, and the state’s trying to catch up with itself, and as Ms. Murry just stated, everybody’s trying to preserve their own little identity, and they’re not heavy-handed, and somehow I think we need to have… you know what I’ve always said about family court. It’s not a unified court system, and so I think we need to get back to it somehow, but it’s a little discouraging that… well it’s encouraging that the counties are solving their own problems, and we’re learning from it, but it’s discouraging the way they’re doing it is going. [SPEAKER CHANGES] Any other comments? It’s been a very interesting one. We’ll be here tomorrow; same time, same room. Adjourned.