Audit finds state IT projects are late and over-budget

Posted April 22, 2013

— A report out Monday from the State Auditor's Office says North Carolina information technology projects are costing the state more than budgeted and coming in later than scheduled. 

The finding will surprise nobody who has paid attention to ongoing problems with the state's Medicaid computer system or to Gov. Pat McCrory's warning that the state's IT infrastructure is "broken."

Specifically, the report looked at 84 IT projects across state government and found "costs were more than twice (an additional $356.3 million) the original agency cost estimates and took about 65 percent (389 days) longer to complete than state agencies originally estimated." 

The auditor's report found a number of contributing factors led to these problems, including no system for verifying that cost estimates were accurate to no consequences for those managing IT projects that come in late. 

A response to the report signed by Chris Estes, the new head of IT for the McCrory administration, generally agreed with the findings and promised to fix the systemic problems that created the cost overruns. Estes writes that a statewide IT plan will be in place by Oct. 1, assuming the legislature provides enough funding.


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  • HeadsUp Apr 23, 2013

    Just wait until the state's new Medicaid payment system launch flops in July. Shooooo-doggie. That will be one hot mess for Governor McCrory and his team.

  • unc70 Apr 23, 2013

    This is the most misleading "audit" I have every seen. This is about IT projects, not about contracts, performance, requirements, or anything else meaningful. It uses the cost estimate at the very first approval as a project. Only 84 out of 1,034 projects in the database even had an estimate at that time, and what those estimates mean varies. The Tax Info Management Systems estimate of $525,00 is for the project, actual $97.3 million. I'd guess it was for that first phase, but who knows. Clearly the auditors don't or they wouldn't go on about it without explaining. Some of the long extensions on project completion dates look like they reflect ongoing operation and maintenance of the production operations.

    I expect McCrory to distort to promote his agenda. I do not expect the State Auditor to be doing that in support of that same agenda. Shame

  • driverkid3 Apr 23, 2013

    Thank goodness, we now have a Governor that is willing and wanting to clean up the mess and wastefulness left by the joker.

  • LuvLivingInCary Apr 23, 2013

    it doesn't matter whether the contracts are private or run by the state employees. the state's CIO still has oversight and project management responsibities and someone didn't do their jobs. all state contracts require a bond so i'm not sure why at least those are not being collected for delays.

  • uBnice Apr 23, 2013

    Are the IT projects contracted to private companies or are they done in-house by the State government? Who is making the money?

    Now I am sure that McCrory's recommendation will be to give the contracts to private companies. But it sure would be nice to know how private companies have performed previously on these projects.

  • Terkel Apr 22, 2013

    Einstein, what are you referring to? The cadre of Indian "pros" hired by Indian employees, or the US "pros" who were handed the contract by Bev's appointee Lanny Cansler?

  • LuvLivingInCary Apr 22, 2013

    clean house mccrory...you were right by firing the last cio and hiring a new one.

  • nerdlywehunt Apr 22, 2013

    So who wrote these contracts????? If the companies miss deadlines then stiff penalties should kick in ....just like contracts for a "real" company does.....absolutely amazing!

  • AlbertEinstein Apr 22, 2013

    Outsourcing at its best.