ITTC May 2021 Meeting

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Pursuant to Iowa Code, Chapter 21, the Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission hereby gives notice to the public of its intended meeting on Thursday, May 20, 2021, at 10:30 a.m. via Zoom.  The proposed agenda for the meeting is included with this notice and incorporated herein by reference.

Members of the public and interested persons are invited to attend the Commission’s meeting. To ensure the most efficient use of State resources, the May 20, 2021, ITTC meeting will be held by Zoom pursuant to Iowa Code section 21.8. To receive the Zoom meeting instructions, please send notification to Lori Larsen at (515) 725-4713 or e-mail

The Commission welcomes public comments as a part of the Commission’s open meetings.  The time for public comment is during the Public Comments portion of the agenda. Comments should be limited to five (5) minutes.  Please send advance written notification of appearance to the Iowa Communications Network, Attention: Lori Larsen, Grimes State Office Building, 400 East 14th Street, Des Moines, IA 50319 or e-mail If you require the assistance of auxiliary aids or services to participate in or attend the meeting because of a disability, please call the ADA Coordinator, Lori Larsen, at 877-426-4692 toll-free or if you are hearing impaired, call Relay Iowa TTY at 800-735-2942 toll-free or e-mail  Questions regarding the meeting agenda may be directed to Lori Larsen, at (515) 725-4713, or 877-426-4692 toll-free or e-mail


Commission / Staff
Commission / Staff
  • ICN Agency Updates
    • Finance Update
      Mike Cruise
    • ACTION: FY 2022 Budget Approval
      Mike Cruise
    • Contracting Update
      Mike Cruise
    • Business Services Update
      Mike Lauer
  • ICN Network Updates
    • Network Operations & Security Update
      Ryan Mulhall
    • Network Engineering Update
      Andy Ryan
    • Network Outside Plant Update
      Dave Augspurger
  • ICN Administration and Facilities Updates
    • Facilities & TAC Update
      Mark Johnson
    • Legislative Update
      Mark Johnson
Other Business 
  • ITTC Committee Updates
Public Comment
Notice Posted
May 13, 2021

Iowa Telecommunications & Technology Commission
Grimes State Office Building, 1st Floor
400 E. 14th Street, Des Moines, IA 50319

May 20, 2021

To ensure the most efficient use of State resources, the May 20, 2021, ITTC meeting was held via video conference pursuant to Iowa Code section 21.8. The current public health recommendation is to minimize public gatherings. A video conference ensured that more Commissioners, staff, and the public were able to participate in the meeting and reduced the risk of delays caused by the public health recommendation.  The meeting was accessible to members of the public.

Roll Call:

Commissioners Present via Zoom

Barb Kniff McCulla, Chair
Bob Holz, Member
Steven Olson, Member
Timothy Lapointe, Member
John McCormally, Representing Rob Sand, Ex-Officio Member

Commissioners Absent

Krista Wenzel, Member
Matt Behrens, Representing Annette Dunn, Ex-Officio Member

Iowa Communications Network Staff via Zoom

Randy Goddard, Executive Director
Deb Evans, Chief Financial Officer
Mark Johnson, Chief Administrative Officer
Scott Pappan, Chief Technology Officer
Mike Cruise, Finance Bureau Manager
Ryan Mulhall, Network Services Bureau Manager
Mike Lauer, ICN Sales Engineer
Mark Dayton, ICN Sales Engineer
Andy Ryan, ICN Sr. Telecommunications Engineer
Dave Augspurger, ICN Sr. Telecommunications Engineer
Brian Clayton, Purchasing Agent III
Lori Larsen, Executive Officer 2 (Recorder)

Guest Attendees via Zoom

Scott Golberg, Fiber Network Services (FNS)
Ray Warner, Aureon
Alan Nagel, Attorney General (phone)

Call to Order:

Chair Kniff McCulla called the meeting to order at 10:30 AM.  It was noted that a quorum of members was present for the meeting.

Approval of the April 15, 2021 Meeting Minutes:

Chair Kniff McCulla requested a motion to approve the April 15, 2021 meeting minutes. Commissioner Olson moved to approve the minutes. Commissioner Holz seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

The motion passed unanimously.

Old Business:


New Business:

Agency Updates

Finance Update – Mike Cruise

April FY 2021 Budget-to-Actual Report

Monthly Revenues and Expenses

The month of April resulted in an operating margin of -$127,995 or -5.0%. This is $163,727 favorable to the budget of -$291,722. Revenue for the month was $24,264 unfavorable to the budget. Being so close to budget there are no concerning issues contributing to this. 

Direct expenses are favorable to budget by $138,072. Total allocated expenses were $49,918 favorable to budget including positive favorability in Outside Plant (OSP) expenses, general and administrative expenses, payroll, and equipment expenditures. Highlighted is the allocated operating expense which is $95,000 unfavorable to budget.

Year-to-Date (YTD) Revenues and Expenses:

Through April the YTD operating margin is -$147,920 or 0.56% which is $1.2M favorable to the budgeted amount. Gross margin is favorable by $603,000.

Comparison to April FY 2020:

The operating margin for FY 2021 is $5,000 favorable to April FY 2020. The decreases in revenue are offset by decreases in direct expense. Total allocated expense is $16,000 unfavorable.

Year-to-Date Comparison to FY 2020: 

The operating margin is $801,000 favorable to FY 2020. The gross margin remains favorable at $406,000 and overall allocated expenses are favorable by $394,000.


Progressing on training the trainers and completing information verification for the HCM module, as well as distribution of communications to all. Looking for end user training to begin in mid to late summer. The second phase of Workday implementation which is the Financial module kicked off May 11. Deployment of financial module is scheduled for Q3-2022. 


ACTION: FY 2022 Budget Approval – Mike Cruise 

General approach was to be a little conservative with revenues and a little more liberal with expenses, especially in regards to increases due to inflation.

Overall cash from operations is being projected at $1,240,574, in reduction of operating cash. This is $382,660 unfavorable to the amount in the fall budget period. Revenue projections increased from the fall by $289,000, but direct expenses also increased by $289,000. We did add several known opportunities for revenue growth, but not as much optimism as in the past. We are not completely discounting that revenue will be a little higher, but we opted to be more conservative. Continuing to compare to the fall budget, indirect operating expenses decreased $317,000 and general administrative expenses decreased $129,000, personnel increased $438,000, and we completed the capital plan which added $417,000 in expenses. FY 2023 was added with slight changes in each category based on what we know now.

Randy Goddard reemphasized a couple of points. In previous years, when Business Services and Finance would set up the revenue side of the budget, they would be based on 50% of expected probability to close an opportunity of sale revenue, and those would be phased into the budget projections. Today, we are more conservative including 75% probability of closing an opportunity of sale revenue, which would provide more assurances on those funds. We are still learning how the return to work for our customers will impact us and also the Cares Act funding.

Chair Kniff McCulla requested a motion to approve the FY 2022 Budget. Commissioner Holz moved to approve the FY 2022 Budget. Commissioner Lapointe seconded the motion. 

The motion passed unanimously.

Contracting Update – Mike Cruise

  • No new contracts to report this month.


Business Services Update – Mike Lauer

Healthcare Update

  • IRHTP Equipment Refresh Project.
    • Conversions have resumed, on track for June/July completion.
  • Knoxville Hospital and Clinics, Internet increase.
  • Mercy Des Moines Hospital, Internet increase.
  • Waverly Health, Janesville Clinic, Ethernet increase.  
  • Iowa Hospital Association, Internet increase.
  • Sanford Health, Ethernet increase.

Government Update

  • Iowa Public Employees' Retirement System signed for new Internet service, 3-year term.
  • Discussion with Iowa Department of Human Services’ (DHS) and Microsoft Azure on ExpressRoute connection.
  • DHS, Woodward, initial meeting on MVS and campus cabling project.
  • DHS, Independence Mental Health Hospital MVS, scheduling final review data gathering.
  • DHS, Child Support Recovery Unit (CSRU), initial meeting on MVS for regional offices.
  • Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT): Ames campus fiber project; DOT placed project on hold.
  • DHS move to LightEdge Data Center Project: no change, in holding pattern.
  • OCIO move to LightEdge Data Center Project: no change, OCIO is in a holding pattern.

Public Safety Update

  • 911 LandLine Migration Project: in negotiation for the local connections to the ICN of the PSAP’s with SALI (Standalone ALI databases).
  • Working Interstate Playbook with neighboring states for emergency transfers of calls across state lines.
  • A few PSAP’s are planning moves this summer/fall, and two are going to consolidate.
  • Judicial Data Center Project:  OneNeck Data Center in Waukee was selected by Judicial. Working the logistics of the project with an anticipated August/September timeframe.
  • DPS, State Patrol Post 12, initial meeting on a new MVS service order.


  • USAC has indicated there will be an additional filing window opening for the FY 2021 funding year for devices and off-site connectivity. Window is not open yet, more information will come at a later date. Schools can procure wireless access points, hotspots, etc.
  • Working with Iowa Public Radio (IPR), Iowa City studio, on MVS, SIP trunk solution, and for Ethernet transport options to tower sites in Carroll and Van Wert.
  • Initial discussion with U of Iowa on connectivity options for Hygienic Lab in Ankeny and Papajohn center in Des Moines.
  • Initial discussion with DMACC on backup connection to Urban Campus.  
  • Solon CSD will be moving their FOTS room this summer. We continue to work with Indianola CSD.

Marketing and Communications

  • Attended the Technology Association of Iowa’s High School Technology Summit on April 20.
  • Applications for the next group of SYBAC students for 2021-2022 has closed.
  • Launched a new internal Intranet for staff.


Network Services Updates

Network Operations & Security Update – Ryan Mulhall

100Gb Network Core Upgrade

  • Approximately 75% of the equipment installs are completed, migration of circuits continues on an on-going basis.
  • BRIC and engineering are now moving forward with the Calmar MLX replacement and awaiting delivery of the new network equipment to the site and will be moving to Waterloo next.
  • We continue to prepare for Internet services swinging from Dallas to Chicago. The physical connection has been made in Equinix and the route has been established between Bettendorf and Chicago. Currently configuring the Gigamon equipment in Bettendorf and then will finish up some routing and peers and expect that we’ll be telling you next month we are fully operational in Chicago and looking at turning down Dallas.

Network Update

  • For our disaster recovery project, our Veeam platform has been installed, and we received our additional storage to place in Tiffin. There is some additional electrical work required at Tiffin to prepare to install the equipment as this is the first gear that the ICN will be utilizing over there which is exciting.
  • We completed rebooting of our aggregation layer switches last month. This has turned into a yearly requirement, and last time took staff about 6 months to complete rebooting approximately 150 devices. We looked for a more efficient way to do this and got it down to a 2-week process. 
  • Our VPN server and clients were patched due to a recent vulnerability. Our security team and our BRIC team quickly worked a plan to update our VPN clients and when the patch for the VPN server became available we were able to patch that quickly as well.

Future Projects and Planning

  • Whitebox testing is ongoing. The goal of this effort is to be able to provide network services to customers without installing multiple pieces of hardware. We won’t be able to use the whitebox solution for our aggregation layer upgrade, but it can still be used as an edge device.
  • We continue working with two firewall vendors. We will use appropriation funding to complete this. Target date to have replaced is December 2021. We will start to decentralize all the agencies that currently sit on the platform.
  • We have completed four interviews for our Firewall Administrator position. We have received a tentative acceptance and will be completing the formal offer. The candidate will be starting with us on June 17.

Chair Kniff McCulla – Good news that you were able to fill that position.

Network Engineering Update – Andy Ryan

Actively tracking 99 tasks.

Teleco System Boxes (TMC3312): We have 41 devices in the Network and 6 are pending installs.

ATM Decommissioning: This will ultimately lead to the sunset of our ATM platform by July – August 2021. Eleven (11) TDM devices need to be moved. 

Facilities (Customer Relocations): Indianola High School (Part II site) will be moving from the administration building into the high school.

Aggregation: Starting aggregation switch upgrade, which will be replacing the Brocade equipment in our network. We had a successful test of a transceiver that supports 100 kilometers for a 10 Gb connection.

Chair Kniff McCulla – Thank you

Network Outside Plant Update – Dave Augspurger

Outside Plant (OSP)

Added 34 new projects in April, which was 162% above average for April. There were four cable cuts. We had three washouts reported and one rodent chew. We had 13 relocation projects opened for the month, 1 new construction project, and zero new estimates.


Administration & Facilities Updates

Facilities and TAC Update – Mark Johnson

TAC (Technical Assistance Center)

Projects completed and in process:

  • Migration of DOC/Newton Correctional Facility to MVS platform was completed.
    • We are currently working with the facility to address opportunities associated with bad copper cabling between buildings as well as additional equipment in order to support their paging system via analog lines in two buildings.
  • Department of Inspections & Appeals, Lucas Bldg 4th floor office configuration and remodel is completed.
    • Department of Inspections & Appeals 3rd Floor Lucas Bldg. conference room and training room cabling upgrades.
  • Provided cost estimate to Iowa Public Broadcasting System (IPBS) associated with replacing cable at their Johnston location.
    • Scope of Work involves replacing existing workstation cabling with all new voice and data workstation cabling.
    • IPBS approved the cost estimate, and the project is scheduled to begin May 24.
  • FirstNet cable and equipment installation supporting Page County Communications in Clarinda and the Linn County Sheriff's Office in Cedar Rapids is completed.

Facilities Update

  • Lucas Building HVAC.
    • Met with DAS to discuss options for replacing the HVAC system which currently has units located on the roof of the Lucas building.
  • HVAC update –We also have a large number of HVAC systems across the State that involve monitoring and maintenance or replacement. Several HVAC replacement projects were completed in the last month including sites in Corning, Oskaloosa, Eagle Grove, and Grinnell.
    • We are providing annual maintenance on existing generators at locations around the State. This includes 100 plus sites and we currently have 60 plus sites completed.

Legislative Update – Mark Johnson

The legislature adjourned sine die before midnight on May 19. ICN Executive Director Randy Goddard was confirmed by the full Senate on April 21 as part of the En Bloc calendar. 


Other Business:

ITTC Committee Updates – Staff/Commission

Personnel Committee – Mark Johnson
Meeting Date: May 3, 2021.
Attendance: Chair Kniff McCulla, Commissioner Holz, and Mark Johnson.
Topics Covered:

  • Update provided on open positions ICN is currently in the process of filling.

Customer and Services Committee – Mike Lauer
Meeting Date: May 12, 2021.
Attendance: Commissioner Olson, Commissioner Lapointe, Business Services staff.
Topics Covered:

  • ICN’s authorized user requests. None.
  • New customers.
  • Services: No new services.
  • New Waiver requests: No new requests.
  • Sales outreach as presented today.
  • Customer complaints and network outages.

Finance Committee – Mike Cruise
Meeting Date: May 14, 2021.
Attendance: Commissioner Wenzel, Commissioner Holz, Brian Clayton, and Mike Cruise.
Topics Covered:    

  • Brian Clayton provided updates on several contracting issues.
  • Review of April FY 2021 financials as presented today.
  • Reviewed the FY 2022 and FY 2023 budget proposal in detail.

Operations Committee – Scott Pappan
Meeting Date: May 13, 2021.
Attendance: Chair Kniff McCulla, Commissioner Wenzel, Scott Pappan, and Ryan Mulhall.
Topics Covered:

  • Building efficiencies strategies moving forward. We also addressed legacy equipment, middle mile, aggregation, and the edge.

Public Comment:



The ITTC meeting adjourned at 11:10 AM.

Barb Kniff McCulla - Chair, Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission

Downloadable Agenda (PDF):
Downloadable Minutes (PDF):

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