COMMITTEE ON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY
PLANNING & BUDGETING SUB-COMMITTEE MEETING
CITY AND COUNTY OF SAN FRANCISCO
Friday, February 15, 2013
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
City Hall, Room 288
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Greg Wagner - CFO, Department of Public Health
Monique Zmuda - Deputy Controller, Controller’s Office
Kenneth Bukowski - Acting COIT Director
Travis Fox - Deputy Director Technology & Performance/CIO, MTA
Michael Liang – CIO, SF Public Library
Bella Fudym - IT Manager, Adult Probation
Vakil Kuner - CIO, Department of Human Services
Theresa Lee - Deputy Airport Director, San Francisco Airport
Ken Salmon - CIO, Public Utilities Commission
Brian Strong - Director, Capital Planning
Chanda Ikeda - Mayor’s Office
1. Call the meeting to order
Chair Greg Wagner called the meeting to order at 10:11 a.m.
2. Roll call
Elaine Benvenuti (for Ken Bukowski)
Art Wong (for Travis Fox)
Brian Benson (for Brian Strong)
Carol Lu – Mayor’s Office
3. Approval of Minutes
Monique Zmunda asked that the word “aggressive” be changed to “focused.” With that amendment, the minutes of February 1, 2013 were approved.
4. ICT Plan Update
Chanda Ikeda, Mayor’s Budget Office, began by saying that the last missing piece related to the ICT Plan is how to message around financial strategies.
Ms. Ikeda reviewed the General Fund requests with the subcommittee and asked the following questions:
1) How do we frame a discussion around these projects?
2) How do we fund the four largest projects?
3) How do we address the other requests?
Ms. Ikeda suggested only funding critical planning and development for large IT projects.
Ms. Ikeda noted that her assumptions do not take into account equipment that may be lease financeable.
Monique Zmuda, speaking of the financial system replacement project, mentioned that the numbers presented are not inclusive of the enterprise department contributions.
Ms. Ikeda noted that she would make sure the charts featured in the ICT Plan identified the dollars coming from Enterprise departments so as to capture the entire cost.
Ms. Ikeda mentioned that it is difficult to use the ICT Plan as a planning document for five years and simultaneously negotiate the fact that the large projects are so enormous in scale that they soak up all of the funding and distort our ability to fund anything else. She went on to say that this results in a Plan that is not really citywide.
The subcommittee discussed whether departments are really able to manage two major projects at the same time and whether this consideration can help guide planning (for example, push out the radio replacement project until the BayWEB project is completed).
Art Wong asked if there are federal deadlines and requirements around radio replacement that the subcommittee should be aware of.
Ms. Ikeda said she did not think so, but that the risk of loss of coverage is significant with an aging system.
Theresa Lee asked if there are ways to finance all of these projects as one large endeavor by the city.
Ms. Zmuda responded by saying that financing is usually limited to tangible, concrete things, not planning and contracting, etc. She went on to say that it is hard to convince ratings agencies that it is worth taking on more debt for something that is not tangible and does not necessarily pay the city back.
Ms. Lee asked if anyone had any revenue generating ideas, perhaps something to put on the November ballot.
Greg Wagner stated that the priority was to fund the financial systems replacement project and the radio replacement project. He went on to say that his perception is that there are still a lot of question about the radio project’s scope and budget and that the department may need a few more years to get ready while the financial systems replacement project seems ready.
Ms. Zmuda noted that the numbers projected are generated through a formula and the Controller’s Office has no idea what the replacement of the city’s financial system will cost in the end. The department has a scoping contract to help determine this.
Ms. Ikeda stated that she had just met with Mitch Sutton from the Department of Emergency Management and that it is agreed by all parties that they are not ready. She went on to say that the department wants to hire a consultant for two years to scope the project and figure out the real cost, but that this will require seed money. The department believes that $0.9 million in each of the two years will be sufficient seed money. Ms. Ikeda mentioned that they did not discuss pushing the project back any further.
Elaine Benvenuti asked if any components of these projects can be pulled out and prioritized.
Ms. Ikeda said she was not aware of any aspects of the radio project that couple be identified as such.
Mr. Wagner stated that the subcommittee is rather limited in terms of real options. He went on to say that we don’t have any real concrete suggestions about to get more money and yet our charge is to come up with a plan. He said the subcommittee needed to decide how to allocate the money that they have and make recommendations based on priorities. He added that it is known that it has been the city’s policy for a while to use one-time dollars for one-time investments and, therefore, this subcommittee can recommend that these are critical investments for the city and an excellent way to use one-time dollars.
Ms. Zmuda said she would like to be even more focused. She said the subcommittee should recommend that the city should allocate a specified amount of money to specific projects. She went on to say that she believes a recommendation from the subcommittee about what should be funded is important.
Mr. Wagner summarized the subcommittee’s recommendation to fund these projects acknowledging that it does not fit within the COIT allocation to do so; therefore, the subcommittee will allocate some money for critical planning and recommend the use of one-time savings for IT investments. The subcommittee will also work with the Mayor’s Office to use language that is focused but acceptable.
Ms. Ikeda then asked how the subcommittee thought projects should be scheduled.
Ken Salmon mentioned that he did not think it should cost so much money to plan for the radio replacement project.
Ms. Ikeda responded by saying that the department will be presenting on the radio project at the next COIT meeting and may give more context for the numbers they project.
Mr. Wagner clarified that the numbers included in the Plan should be defended and scrutinized, but that they are not commitments.
Bella Fudym asked if the Department of Emergency Management is ready to take on planning in Fiscal Year 2013-14.
Ms. Ikeda said they were ready to take on a consultant as soon as they have seed money. She clarified that they do not have the necessary expertise in house.
Ms. Zmuda asked about how the subcommittee wanted to schedule department presentations.
There was general discussion about presentation scheduling, timing, and format. The subcommittee discussed getting department presentations the Tuesday before the meeting to allow time for the subcommittee to review them. The subcommittee also agreed that departments should include a project ratings sheet with their PowerPoint presentation.
Ms. Ikeda said she would pass along this information to departments and send out a reminder on February 21st.
5. Public Comment
There was no public comment.
The meeting was adjourned at 11:23am.