County approves $25,000 computer system
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[AUG. 18, 2004]
The hardware and software
contract for the county computers is up at the end of this fiscal
year, which comes at the end of November. New government
requirements keep increasing and necessitate a new system of
accounting. Research has begun for the best new system that will
handle the many changes imposed mostly by state and some by federal
The financial and tax systems fall most
prey to those changes. The three offices directly affected are those
of the tax assessor, treasurer and county clerk.
The system will not only need to meet new accounting requirements,
but will also need to handle the flow of information between other
departments as well.
The state will be requiring a listing
of property assets and equipment depreciation next year. Other
government mandates, such as more public access and disclosure
requirements, also precipitate the need of a new system.
A local computer professional is acting
as consultant for the project. Patrick Doolin of Integrity Data was
first contacted to do an overview of all the computers in the
various county departments. Doolin was then hired to coordinate the
effort to find a software vendor to perform a needs assessment.
Doolin said he contacted Microsoft and
got their recommendation of vendors that specialize in government
needs. They recommended a company called Tectura, which has a
regional office in New Berlin, Wis. He has met with a couple of
their specialists and familiarized them with the Logan County
departments and offices.
The specialists from Tectura will come
back here and work with the various departments and learn what their
specific needs are during the assessment. In their analysis they
will look at the flow of information between various departments and
then coordinate a package that includes hardware and software.
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Doolin will continue to interpret and
monitor the project. The assessment should be completed by mid- to
late September, Doolin said. He will help recommend staying with the
current software company,
going with Tectura or someone else.
Tectura proposed an assessment, which
includes hardware and software needs, at a fee of $25,000 with 50
percent down and the remainder paid in increments.
Finance Chairman Chuck Ruben said that
he anticipates the final cost of the new system will be between
$500,000 and $600,000 over a five-year period. There will be some
additional costs if the county changes vendors. It seems we are
going to have to buy county information back from the current
software company, he said.
of the assessment, County Clerk Sally Litterly said that the
software system will be used for payroll, tax ministration and to
pay bills -- all county financial matters.
"An assessment will
prevent you from buying things you aren't going to use," Doolin said.