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Scope of Work
CTG held three knowledge sharing forums between November 2009 and April 2010. The first forum was in September 2009 and highlighted the NYS Department of Transportation’s (NYSDOT) response to the Recovery Act reporting requirements. A second forum, hosted in November 2009, gave practitioners the opportunity to discuss lessons learned from the October 10th reporting deadline and the challenges of working with sub-recipients. The last forum, held in April 2010, brought to light the changes, challenges, and opportunities for transparency as revealed through the year long Recovery Act reporting experience.

September 2009 Forum # 1 – An Agency Response: DOT Case

Nancy Mulholland, CIO for the NYSDOT, and Tom Johnston, Manager of the Business Solutions Bureau and IT Lead for the Recovery Act project team for NYSDOT, shared how their agency managed Recovery Act reporting. They were joined by representatives from Oracle, who oversaw the design and implementation of business intelligence tools (a proof-of-concept) with NYSDOT.

The presentation provided an overview of NYS DOT’s approach to Recovery Act reporting including:
  • A demonstration of NYSDOT’s solution, capabilities, and constraints;
  • Challenges and successes of working with the Federal Highway Administration and the Office of Management and Budget;
  • Additional reporting or informational requests required by other stakeholders, including the Governor’s Office, congressional committees, and elected officials;
  • Discussion of unmet needs and potential solutions.

November 2009 Forum # 2 – October 10th reporting and sub-recipient experiences

Two panels of representatives from New York state agencies presented their experiences, pain points, successes, lessons learned, and plans for moving forward in managing IT as a resource in support of Recovery Act reporting requirements. Each panel presentation was followed by a discussion period.

The first panel addressed their lessons learned while meeting the October 10th reporting requirement.
  • Robert Martin – Division of Military and Navel Affairs
  • Phillip Bell – Department of Transportation
  • Richard Umholtz and Scott Edwards – Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance
The second panel addressed the issues and challenges related to sub-recipient reporting.
  • William Herman – Department of Environmental Conservation
  • Mike Sawicz – Department of Health
  • Stephen McNally and Deborah Cunningham – Department of Education

April 2010 Forum # 3 – Leveraging technology to increase transparency

Theresa Pardo gave a keynote presentation on the new expectations for transparency by the Obama administration. She discussed the challenges public managers face trying to make real-time, comprehensive, information about government activities more available. One driving question was, what does this actually mean for transparency from a data perspective?

A panel discussion with members from different state agencies, fulfilling different roles in the Recovery Act reporting process, shared their insights into how these new demands for transparency impact current practices. The panel specifically focused on the effect of Recovery Act reporting on agencies and how it is defined and how it has changed the way agencies think about data and information.

Panelists
  • Charles (Chuck) Szuberla – Director of School Operations & Management Services, NYSED
  • Mark Mitchell – Director of Internal Audit, NYS Energy Research and Development Authority
  • Tom Johnston – Director of Business Solutions Bureau, NYS Department of Transportation
  • Jon Brown – Director of Internal Audit, Division of Housing and Community Renewal
The morning concluded with a group discussion of the lessons learned over the last year through these forums.