The future of the Victorian Department of Justice’s Integrated Courts Management System (ICMS) is still on hold after more than 12 months under review, a spokesperson for the agency has confirmed.

More than seven years after work started on the project, a critical evaluation of the system’s progress is “expected to be completed by the end of the year,” the spokesperson said.

Originally announced in 2005 as a four-year program, the ICMS has faced numerous delays and has incurred extensive additional costs to the State Government.

The project featured in the Victorian Ombudsman’s 2011 Own motion investigation into ICT-enabled projects, which looked into ten high-risk projects in the Victorian public sector.

Of these 10 projects, two have since been cancelled, four have been completed, three are ongoing and the ICMS project remains under review.

The project’s completion was initially rescheduled for August 2010 and then further extended to February 2012 due to supplier-related contractual issues. The project was originally allocated $45 million, but the current total budget now stands at $66 million.

“[It] is over three years behind schedule and is expected to cost an additional $21 million to complete,” said the Ombudsman’s report.

The system was designed to provide an integrated administrative and service platform across all Victorian courts and tribunals. Its useable life is forecast to be seven years according to the Annual Report.

The Annual Report has also revealed that the DoJ is continuing to struggle with the roll-out of its Infringement Management and Enforcement Services (IMES) platform, with flow-on effects harming the operations of other services at the Department.

Operations of IMES functions such as the management of speed cameras and processing infringement notices have been outsourced to Tenix Solutions. However, the Department of Justice has been unable to confirm whether the development of the replacement IT system has been subcontracted to another provider, as the information is commercial-in-confidence.

The DoJ annual report did, however, contain some positive news, with the financial year featuring successful renegotiations of contracts by Victoria’s Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (within the Justice cluster) for its Emergency Alerting System with Leighton Group subsidiary Visionstream for $70 million, and Metropolitan Mobile Radio systems with Motorola Solutions for $130 million.

Visionstream, which was previously a subcontractor in the establishment of the Emergency Alerting System, will manage the system which communicates with over 40,000 emergency services staff via a personal pager.

Motorola Solutions will continue to operate the radio network, which is used to coordinate emergency responses. 

Both contracts expire in 2016.

The Victorian government has also contributed to the National Emergency Alert System, which is working with the major carriers Telstra, Optus and Vodafone to provide location-based text message warnings to Australians in disaster areas. The Federal government invested $60 million in the system, to be completed prior to the 2013/14 fire season.

Related Articles:

Mapping the progress of Victoria’s troublesome ten

More delays reported for Victorian Department of Justice IT projects

Victoria’s Draft ICT Strategy: the in-depth guide

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