Technologically challenged county
IT request for public funds for home use.
Columbia County, FL (posted
2010, at 02:30pm)
I have reviewed the Columbia County IT
request and I find it
Mr. Manning spends much of his time at meetings playing
solitaire and doing e- mail. (Observer Photo)
I would like to know what they consider to be a
"critical system." Any FOIA requests never turn up any
emails, so I cannot consider the email server critical.
Getting budgetary information from the county is equally
impossible - I'm guessing the use of an abacus, stone
table and hammer and chisel are used to handing all of
the accounting data for the county.
From everyday dealing with the county "public
servants," the only critical system I can think of would
be the web server, if it is indeed housed onsite.
Being on call 24/7 is part of the job duties of an IT
Director and staff. That is a fact of life. I have spent
many weekends and holidays doing maintenance and
upgrades that would have otherwise brought our network
down and impacted our daily workflow. Why -- Because
it's my job.
Mr. Brian (not
his real name) is an experienced IT professional with
over 30 years of civilian and military computer
experience. He runs a maintains an advanced computer
network with over 100 work stations and 14 servers.
Computer emergencies are handled when he is out of the
office from an Alltel air card, through a VPN. If that
doesn't work -- he gets in his car and drives to
I cannot think of a reason to justify this
expenditure. At a time when the county has rolled-back
the wages on their employees like Walmart having a sale,
cut funding to publicly sponsored youth sports programs,
cut back on library programs and moaned about
budgetary woes, I find this request utterly distasteful
and a potential complete waste of taxpayer money.
Mr. Manning may have spelled this out as a 'data
connection', but the Mega-Link service AT&T offers is
simply a T1 connection from point 'a' to point 'b',
which will allow him access to the County systems. It
will also allow him to have internet access from his
house at the County's expense, as he could easily
configure the system to permit his 'home' side of the
network to use the County internet connection for
Now the County would not only be funding this data
connection, but also the 'Manning family internet'
access and may be responsible for whatever Todd Manning
and his family do while on the internet. Since Mr.
Manning is the IT Director, there are no checks and
If Mr. Manning doesn't want to have to work from the
office, perhaps he'd be better suited to joining the
Celebrity Roast crowd on Comedy Central. I understand
his ability to insult the taxpaying citizens of this
county is legendary.
This is just another example of Columbia County's
technological ignorance and its ability to squander
taxpayer money for the "good ole boys" personal gain.