Councilman Bill Green and five members of City Council have co-sponsored legisilation that would create a permanent Charter position for a Chief Information Officer and would consolidate all of the city’s Information Technology resources under the Division of Technology.
The legislation would require the CIO to report directly to the Mayor and to create an annual IT strategic plan that includes productivity enhancements to help the city utilize paperless services. It also gives the CIO more oversight over city department technology appropriations.
“When they wrote the Charter in 1952, no one imagined there could be a paperless system,” Green told Technically Philly during a telephone interview this morning. “[The legislation would] make investment in and continual upgrade of our technology a permanent part of city government.”
Last July, Mayor Nutter issued an executive order to reorganize the city’s Division of Technology, placing then CIO Allan Frank in charge of the city’s entire IT system, including 520 employees. The new role, Chief Technology Officer, placed Frank on the mayoral cabinent.
Though Green backs the work Frank has been doing as CTO, he says he’d like to see some changes. Department heads aren’t easily giving up the IT portion of their budgets, he says, a problem his legislation could solve. Green says that it is paramount that the city starts addressing tech issues like these immediately. “It’s been two years into the administration and we haven’t made any serious technology implementations,” he says.
If the bill—backed by Councilmembers Blondell Reynolds Brown, Curtis Jones, Jr., Jack Kelly, W. Wilson Goode, Jr. and Maria Quiñones-Sánchez—passes Council and the ballot referundum is approved by voters on May 18, the legisilation would immediately go into effect.
Green expects that Nutter would appoint Frank to the CIO position should the legislation pass.
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