CTG hosting a series of ARRA knowledge-sharing forums for New York State Agencies

Nov. 10, 2009

Tom Johnston

At CTG's first forum, Tom Johnston, Manager of the Business Solutions Bureau and IT Lead on NYSDOT’s ARRA project team, shared information technology solutions developed by DOT to manage ARRA reporting for the October 10th deadline.

CTG, with the support of Governor Paterson’s Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Cabinet, is hosting a series of forums for New York state agencies to share best practices on effective technology-based ARRA reporting strategies. The goal of the forums is to help support the exchange of information and leverage the existing best and current practices in this area.

The federal requirements for reporting ARRA funds rely on the ability of state agencies to leverage current and new technology resources to capture, manage, and deliver the data required. Some agencies are off to a quick start building on previously existing knowledge and capability; others are learning as they are meeting the very aggressive timelines the federal government has put into place. This environment provides an opportunity for cross agency knowledge sharing on how to create effective technology-based reporting and public dissemination strategies.

The first forum began with a presentation by the Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) to share information technology solutions developed to manage ARRA reporting for the October 10th deadline. The NYSDOT experience illuminated many of the key challenges facing state agencies: integrating with current business processes; creating new data sources and processes; transforming and reconciliation of data from existing legacy systems; ensuring data quality; reporting on sub recipient projects; and the tracking of job creation and retention.

After NYSDOT’s presentation, CTG moderated a discussion with the 30 agencies and local municipalities who attended. The diverse perspectives of the participating agencies of various sizes, missions, and levels of experience with federal reporting demonstrated the levels of complexity in ARRA reporting. The participants agreed that continued cross agency knowledge sharing would be to the benefit of all in moving forward.

To do so, CTG will be holding its second forum for state agencies on November 20, 2009. CTG will moderate two panels consisting of representatives from a diverse cross section of state agencies. The first panel will share their experiences from the October 10th ARRA reporting process. The second panel will focus on the issues and challenges related to sub recipient reporting.

Panel participants will include representatives from the following New York State agencies: Division of Military and Navel Affairs, Department of Transportation, and Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, Department of Environmental Conservation, State Education Department, Department of Transportation, and the Department of Health.

CTG will also be presenting the preliminary results from a short survey conducted of New York state agencies, municipalities and county IT directors on the challenges of ARRA reporting. This information along with the discussions at the forums will be used to document the key findings and best practices in a white paper, which will be available from the CTG Web site.