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Budget 2013-14: NSW finally funds reform promises

by Paris Cowan •
Free resource

The NSW Police Force has pocketed $74 million in new ICT allocations in the NSW Government’s 2013-14 State Budget, while NSW Health will have to wait for another year at least to see money come through for its major ICT infrastructure reform program.

In 2013-14 the NSW Police Force will embark upon a $44.8 million technical migration of its Computerised Operational Policing System (COPS) to a modern database, to be completed by 2016.

In September 2011, the first stage of the COPS modernisation process was completed when WebCOPS, developed in partnership with Fujitsu, formally replaced a 15 year old legacy platform.

At the same time Police will also begin the migration of its voice network and an upgrade of its data network, budgeted at $20.5 million through to 2017.

The big result for the NSW Police Force’s IT division follows two or three quiet budgets for the Force while the Government’s focus has been on health, transport and education ICT initiatives.

NSW Health has not received new funding for the third stage of its system-wide infrastructure reform program. A business case for the initiative is understood to have been submitted to Treasury more 18 months ago, but has not yet delivered any cash for the Department.

Phase 1 was funded in the 2009-10 Budget at a value of $38.6 million for the four years 2009 to 2013. Phase 2 was funded in the 2011-12 Budget at a value of $47.1 million for the four years 2011 to 2015.

2013-14 is also emerging as the year in which the NSW Government funds the various reform initiatives announced since it assumed power in 2011, particularly the consolidation of the State’s data centres and the establishment of Service NSW.

NSW Health’s only new ICT allocation in 2013-14 is $31.4 million to migrate to one of two new purpose built data centres due to be completed by Metronode later this year. Alongside the Department of Education and Communities (DEC), Health will be an anchor tenant for one of the facilities..

DEC has not received equivalent funding for its own migration.  However the agency leading the data centre reform, the Department of Finance and Services (DFS) has received $9.9 million over four years for an “Acceleration Program” to kick start the mandatory transition of NSW agencies to the new facilities. $6.5 million of this is earmarked to be spent in the 2013-14 year.

Funding has also become visible for the establishment of Service NSW, the new agency overseen by the Department of Premier and Cabinet (DP&C) that will assume responsibility for a range of client-facing transactional services currently delivered by a range of State agencies. 

A total of $7 million will be spent this year to set up a core Customer Service System to bolster the operations of Service NSW. Another $13 million over two years will be spent on the service centres themselves, which is likely to include a foundational ICT fit-out.

DFS has received new funding for systems integration works that will form the basis of the Service NSW online channel to be known as OneGov. OneGov is intended as a single electronic portal for licensing, vehicle registration and permit applications, amongst other things.

It has received $9.5 million to be spent over 2014 and 2015 on upgrading the underlying operating platform that supports the Government Licensing System (GLS) so that it can be integrated into the OneGov channel. It has also received $4.5 million over four years for the establishment of the digital self-service capabilities of OneGov.

In operational terms, the Budget Papers reveal that $44.8 million was spent on Service NSW in 2012-13, which is set to more than double in 2013-14 to $93.5 million when the first service centres open their doors. Much of this funding will be rolled over from allocations at Roads and Maritime and NSW Fair Trading whose duties Service NSW will assume.

Service NSW is expected to employ 676 people in coming financial year.

Join us on 16 July at Intermedium’s annual NSW Budget Briefing to hear about key allocations, trends and the market outlook for ICT in the NSW Government.

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Keep an eye out for all new releases on Budget IT – NSW coming soon >>>


Related Articles:

Whole-of-government platforms will fortify O’Farrell’s service delivery transformation

New ICT funding down in conservative NSW Budget

NSW Budget 2011: First count identifies $800 million in ICT Capital Expenditure

For more information, please contact the Editor (02) 9955 9896.

  • NSW
  • Justice
  • COPS
  • NSW Budget 2013-14
  • NSW Data Centre Strategy
  • NSW Health
  • NSW Police Force
  • Service NSW