City software upgrade will cost $1.25M

Published 9:01 pm Monday, November 1, 2010

The city hopes to spend $1.25 million over three budget years to upgrade its outdated software system, City Manager Selena Cuffee-Glenn told City Council members last month.

The plan, which City Council must approve, calls for an initial payment from this year’s budget of $300,000 to buy a new software system. Two subsequent payments of $475,000 in future budget years will complete the payment for the system.

According to a letter from Cuffee-Glenn to Council members, the city’s current system is about 16 years old and operates on an obsolete technology platform, which displays information on antiquated “green terminals.” The need to continually customize the system for individual departments’ functions was becoming costly and time-consuming, Cuffee-Glenn said.

Email newsletter signup

In addition, many city functions were operating independent systems that required employees to do extra work to make the systems “communicate,” Cuffee-Glenn said. A new, integrated system would eliminate that need and provide immediate communication between departments.

Areas that are especially affected by the software needs include human resources, payroll, finance, budgeting, community development, planning and permits, treasurer and commissioner of the revenue.

City staff solicited proposals and are recommending replacing the current system with New World software, which according to Cuffee-Glenn “will provide a comprehensive technology solution to serve the above noted service areas and integrate critical data currently not connected to increase the efficiency of operations citywide.”

The purchase price includes staff training over the expected 18 months of putting the system in place, Cuffee-Glenn added.

City Council is expected to consider the initial payment from the available city information technology fund balance at an upcoming meeting.