The City Council back-tracked on a previous decision to outsource an information system employee, voting Tuesday to return the jobs to city employ. The move is expected to save about $14,000 next year.
The council voted 8-5 to remove the infrastructure manager from its contract with Velocity Partners to provide technical support for the city. Aldermen Jeff Coe, Michael Shields, Jim Kaplan, David Maack and Robert Mozol voted against the motion.
Coe had proposed reinstating a programmer position along with the infrastructure manager, but after a flury of procedural questions, the council voted against the idea.
The vote adjusted a contract the city signed with Velocity Partners in 2007 (Read our previous story here). At the time, the idea was a technology company would do a better job managing the city's computer systems than city employees because it would have more flexibility and a better grasp of emerging trends. Money was not a consideration because the city didn't expect savings from the five outsourced positions.
But the decision to outsource was made when the city didn't have a director for its information systems department. Once Paul Ancona was hired to lead the department - called Management Information Systems - a review of MIS suggested the city should have a dedicated employee to manage sensitive data systems, particularly police and fire systems.
The council's vote Tuesday night creates the dedicated position while retaining the city's relationship with Velocity Partners.
Aldermen Bob Anderson, Sandy Weidner, Terry McCarthy, Ray DeHahn, Greg Helding, Aron Wisneski, Jim Spangenberg and Tom Friedel voted for returning the infrastructure managemement position to the city.
Alderman Ron Hart was excused from the meeting and City Council President QA Shakoor II, who ran the meeting, was a non-voting member.