TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – A Florida TaxWatch-led effort to create an Information Technology (IT) governance structure for the state unanimously passed the Florida House of Representatives on Wednesday. The bill authorizes the creation of the Agency for State Technology, which could save the state more than $20 million annually with an efficiency improvement of just one percent, according to a report from Florida TaxWatch.
“Florida TaxWatch applauds the House of Representatives for taking this important step to manage IT costs,” said Dominic M. Calabro, President and CEO of Florida TaxWatch, the independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit public policy research institute and government watchdog. “Creating an independent IT agency has been a long-standing recommendation from TaxWatch for more than 10 years. Our state is making great strides to improve the services it provides for Florida taxpayers.”
TaxWatch has continually called for the support of a state agency with the responsibility and authority for enterprise-wide technology governance. The creation of the Agency for State Technology is one of the key cost-savings recommendations included in this year’s report from the TaxWatch Center for Government Efficiency, led by Chairman John Alexander and Vice-Chair Bob Stork. The report also identifies other opportunities for Florida to save more than $1 billion through enhanced efficiency measures and cost savings.
Currently, Florida is the only state in the U.S. without a Chief Information Officer, according to the National Conference of State Legislators, and it tied for last in the nation in terms of state IT structure. This important legislation will help Florida align with IT best practices.
The Senate is considering a similar proposal to reform Florida’s IT management.