The Norman Transcript


February 8, 2013

CIO touts school IT consolidation

OKLAHOMA CITY — Public school districts across Oklahoma could potentially save millions of dollars each year by consolidating their computer systems and services, Gov. Mary Fallin’s technology chief told a House panel on Thursday.

Oklahoma’s Chief Information Officer Alex Pettit unveiled details of the governor’s “Open Range” plan before the House Government Modernization Committee. Under the voluntary program, school districts could consolidate their information technology, or IT systems, and share services with the state.

By allowing the state to negotiate large-scale contracts with software and hardware vendors and provide IT services to districts, Pettit said, schools could save millions of dollars and free up teachers and support personnel, especially in smaller districts, who are currently serving as IT employees. Even in larger districts, Pettit said IT workers often serve as a “jack-of-all-trades” rather than specializing in one specific area.

“We have a lot of folks who are IT generalists out there. They take care of the servers. They take care of the security. They take care of the network. They do the end-user support. They do everything. When we consolidate an agency and we transform their IT, these people go from being generalists to being specialists,” Pettit said. “When I have people that are specialists doing it, not only do they do a better job, but it takes fewer of them to support the entire group. So I’m able to get efficiencies.”

A similar effort to consolidate the IT services of state agencies that was launched in recent years already has helped realize annual savings of more than $40 million, Pettit said.

Much of those savings were realized through a reduction in the number of state IT employees. According to Pettit’s most recent quarterly report to the Legislature, the number of state IT workers was cut from 1,215 in 2009 to 974 last year, and most of those have been consolidated into the Office of Management and Enterprise Services.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Fracking Operation Norman library to host community dialogue about fracking

    Are Oklahoma oil companies an oligarchy that is controlling state policy? Is fracking safe? These and other topics will be the subject of an upcoming Fracking Forum from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Aug. 11 in the Norman Public Library’s Lowry Room, 225 ...

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Information scarce on ‘dark money’ group in Oklahoma superintendent campaign

    An independent expenditure group that paid for television advertisements opposing State Superintendent Janet Barresi in last month’s primary has not filed required spending reports with the Oklahoma Ethics Commission....

    July 24, 2014

  • Medical examiner says inmate died of an accidental drug overdose

    The Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s Office on Wednesday said a woman found dead in the Cleveland County jail Feb. 23 died of a drug overdose....

    July 24, 2014

  • Ride CART fare free on Ozone Alert Day

    Environmental officials have declared today as an Ozone Alert Day. Passengers ride fare free on Cleveland Area Rapid Transit on Ozone Alert Days....

    July 24, 2014

  • Board votes to delay plan

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma’s State Board of Education voted on Wednesday for a second time to delay a formal plan for adopting new education standards in math and English amid opposition to the proposal from three education groups that ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Arizona inmate dies two hours after execution begins

    PHOENIX — A condemned Arizona inmate gasped and snorted for more than an hour and a half during his execution Wednesday before he died in an episode sure to add to the scrutiny surrounding the death penalty in the U.S....

    July 24, 2014

  • Man injured in motorcycle wreck ID’d

    Norman police identified a man transported to Norman Regional Hospital’s emergency room after a two-vehicle collision involving a motorcycle and a car Wednesday....

    July 24, 2014

  • Wine, Organ and Compline at St. Thomas More

    St. Thomas More University Parish, 100 Stinson St., is hosting the Wine, Organ and Compline at 7 p.m. today. The series will begin with a wine and cheese gathering in the atrium, followed by an organ recital presented by guest organist ...

    July 24, 2014

  • 48 dead after Taiwan plane crash

    TAIPEI, Taiwan — Family members of victims of a plane crash were flying to the small Taiwanese island today where the plane had unsuccessfully attempted to land in stormy weather, killing 48. There were 10 survivors, and authorities were ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Felonies filed

    The following persons were charged with felony counts in the Cleveland County Court Clerk’s Office: · Kenneth Leo Turk, 64, aggravated count of driving a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol · Kelly Revonn Turner, 21, ...

    July 24, 2014