ITTC January 2020 Minutes

Date: 
Thursday, January 16, 2020
Iowa Telecommunications & Technology Commission January 2020 Minutes

Iowa Telecommunications & Technology Commission January 2020 Minutes

Grimes State Office Building, 1st Floor
400 E.  14th Street, Des Moines, IA 50319

FINALc
January 16, 2020

To ensure the most efficient use of State resources, the January 16, 2020, ITTC meeting was held via video conference pursuant to Iowa Code section 21.8. A video conference also ensured that more Commissioners were able to participate in the meeting and reduced the risk of delays caused by weather or other impediments to travel.  The meeting was accessible to members of the public through attendance at the Grimes State Office Building and via video conference.

Roll Call:

Commissioners Present:

Barb Kniff McCulla, Chair
Bob Holz, Member
Steven Olson, Member
Kelly Dolan Lange, Member (LightSpeed Plus phone)
Timothy Lapointe, Member
Drew Stensland, Representing Rob Sand, Ex-Officio Member

Commissioners Absent:

Annette Dunn, Ex-Officio Member

Iowa Communications Network Staff Present:

Deb Evans, Agency Division Administrator, Chief Financial Officer (CFO)
Mark Johnson, Carrier Services Division Administrator, Chief Operating Officer (COO)
Mike Cruise, Finance Bureau Manager
Randy Goddard, Business Services Bureau Manager
Ryan Mulhall, Network Services Bureau Manager
Scott Pappan, Engineering/Operations Bureau Manager
Lori Larsen, Executive Officer 2 (Recorder)
Karen Alessio, Secretary 2 (LightSpeed Plus video)

Guest Attendees:

Scott Golberg, Fiber Network Services (FNS)
Sean Cory, CenturyLink
Alan Nagel, Attorney General’s Office
Ray Warner, Aueron

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 December 16, 2019 Meeting Minutes:

Chair Kniff McCulla requested a motion to approve the December 16, 2019 meeting minutes. Commissioner Olsen moved to approve the minutes. Commissioner Lapointe seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.

Old Business:

None

New Business:

Agency Updates

Finance Update – Mike Cruise

December Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 Budget-to-Actual Report:

  • Monthly Revenues and Expenses:
    • The month of December resulted in an operating margin of $43,197.76 or 1.56%. This is favorable to the budget of -$77,830 by $121,027.76. Highlights are voice, internet and OSP installs revenue being above budget. There were no major variances in December.
  • Year-to-Date Revenues and Expenses:
    • The December year-to-date operating margin was -$919,319.83, which is favorable to the budgeted margin of -$1,379,002 by $459.682.17. Revenue, direct expenses, and allocated operating expenses are all now favorable to budget.
  • Comparison to FY 2019:
    • The operating margin for FY 2020 is unfavorable to the FY 2019 operating margin of $302,244.14 by $259,046.38. In December FY19 we adjusted $306,638.44 in expenses we had over-accrued from remaining FY18 vendor invoices. Additionally, in December FY19 we had billed $179,000 in fiber cuts, which we book against expense further reducing FY19 expenses.
  • Year-to-Date Comparison to FY 2019:
    • The December year-to-date margin of -$919,319.83 is $97,110.92 favorable to the
      FY 2019 margin of -$1,016,430.75. There were no major issues in December.

COMMENTS:

None

Business Services Update – Randy Goddard

  • Managed Voice System (MVS):
    • New opportunities: Iowa Lottery (Storm Lake and Mason City).
    • New Orders: Clarinda Correctional facility and Iowa Department of Human Services (DHS) call center offices. State Public Defender is also showing interest.
  • Iowa Homeland Security & Emergency Management (HSEMD) and 911 Project:
    Wireline and Hosted Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) Equipment:
    • Wireline Aggregation – ICN is working with HSEMD’s 911 Program Manager, CenturyLink and Local telcos on connectivity identification and communications for future Automatic Number and Automatic Location Identification updates.
    • Hosted Equipment Solution – Partnership with HSEMD and their contractor (Zetron).  HSEMD has had this in place for a year and a half now. Reviewing the current structure and looking to make improvements.
    • ICN continues working closely with HSEMD and contractors for strengthening 911 ESInet solution. Discussion topics include secondary connections, wireless service provider (FirstNet).
    • Discussions have started about providing security services at the PSAPs.
  • Healthcare: Iowa Rural Health Telecommunications Program (IRHTP)
    • New Connections: Keokuk for Unity Point. We also had several bandwidth increases.
  • Education: USAC/E-rate
    • ICN is in the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC)/e-rate cycle for FY 2020.
      • Form 470’s (Applications) window is open until February 26, 2020.
      • Form 471’s (Awards) begin in January and continue until March 25, 2020.
      • FCC posted list of eligible services on December 9, 2019.
      • 500 service request bids (470s) are currently posted. By the end of the window there will be close to 2,000.
  • Service Growth:
    • Discussion with Department of Education regarding adding sites back on to the Part III contract.
    • Grant Wood AEA’s proof of concept based on professional services for two schools to assist in maintaining their Wireless LAN.
    • Discussion with Mississippi Bend AEA. They are moving back to the aggregation model. They are inquiring about our Internet and Security services. This service will be USAC eligible.
    • Security Products – Firewall opportunities for Mississippi Bend AEA, HSEMD’s 911 project, and DHS.
  • Other significant opportunities:
    • Caucus connections for ABC, NBC, and CNN via state agency hosting.
      • MAC (Move, Add, Change) freeze dates for Caucus: January 29 – February 5.
    • DOC’s Inmate Tablet RFP has been released.
    • Reviewing and renewing community college contracts.
    • Completed new Internet connection for Governor’s residence at Terrace Hill.
    • Completed new Internet and data circuits for OCIO move to new office at 200 E. Grand.

COMMENTS:

Deb Evans - I want to provide an explanation regarding ICN’s partnership with DOC. ICN has provided DOC’s inmate calling for 20+ years. We have the ability to procure RFPs (Request for Proposals), and have always provided that service for inmate calling. In addition, ICN coordinates the vendor process, the financial aspects, and auditing. DOC asked if ICN would complete the RFP, and also if ICN would be open to auditing. This is an example of the consultation service that ICN provides.

Chair Kniff McCulla – You probably opened their eyes when informing them about the auditing piece.

A: Deb Evans – Yes, we told them that it would be entirely on them to complete auditing. After additional discussions, DOC decided it might be of interest to continue to work with us to perform the auditing component.

Chair Kniff McCulla – Has this been a busier January than past years?

A: Randy Goddard – Yes. There has been more activity. We continue to work on the 911 project, IRHTP network upgrade, and security services.

Commissioner Lapointe – I remember talking about public/private partnerships in the past. It seems like almost everything that we are doing now requires some part of public/private partnerships.

A: Randy Goddard – Yes, it is. We have FNS, CenturyLink, engineering designs, etc. We have many partnerships, they are growing.

Commissioner Lapointe – I think it is great that Mississippi Bend AEA is coming around. We are used to seeing waivers from AEAs over the years. Does this mean that we won’t be seeing many waiver requests?

A: Randy Goddard – We hope we don’t see waivers. We pay attention to what the market is doing, as well as our costs to provide products. In the past the AEAs could procure using the Iowa Department of Education’s contract, this is the last year for that contract. This next year it is open to every provider to compete for the services.

ICN Carrier Updates

Network Services Update – Ryan Mulhall

  • Outside Plant:
    1. December 16, 2019 (Primary Health Care, Des Moines Ciena Failure)
      1. Affected Customers: Primary Health Care East Side Clinic, Des Moines
      2. Reason: Switch failure at customer location
      3. Restoral Action: In the troubleshooting process, ICN was able to narrow down the issue to a switch failure at the customer location. ICN is the secondary connection for the clinic, so this was non-service impacting to the customer.
    2. Pre-Qualification Request for Proposal (RFP)
      1. One of the focuses will be working to put an RFP out to prequalify vendors to work on our Outside Plant projects. We hope to solve a few issues with the RFP. The first is to ensure that the contractors are familiar with our standards, and are able to complete the work to our level in a timely manner. The second is to get a better handle and estimate of our Outside Plant costs by having a set negotiated rate, and also make it easier to provide construction estimates to customers as well.
      2. Another major focus will be working on updating our agreement with the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT). The current agreement was established in 2008, and is set to expire in February. The DOT is a great partner for the ICN, and we want to continue to evolve the relationship so both parties benefit. ICN provides the maintenance for the DOT fiber network, share resources when it comes to mapping for each organization, and the DOT will typically provide facilities when they do large projects and install fiber for their network.
  • ServiceNow Customer Service Management

We continue to work with INRY on developing Customer Service Management in our ServiceNow instance. This will allow us the ability to have customers interact and order services with the ICN. Customers will also see a revamped portal to have more control over the people in their organization authorized to order services.

  • TAC

Our TAC group has been busy on a few larger projects for key customers and key events. They have been focused on the OCIO’s office move to 200 East Grand and also the upcoming caucus by ensuring the infrastructure. With the big push for the MVS project wrapping up, we are also starting to look at how we can capture more cabling opportunities outside the Capitol Complex, and what the workforce needs to look like in order to try and capture these opportunities.

  • Security Awareness Training

The OCIO has finished the testing phase of their new security awareness training, Proofpoint. They will begin to roll out the training to agencies. The ICN will be completing this training during the month of February. The process should be very similar to previous years in which employees receive an email with instructions on how to begin and complete the training. It is the policy of the OCIO and the ICN that all users complete Security Awareness training annually, which also includes the Commission members.

COMMENTS:

Chair Kniff McCulla – For your Outside Plant RFP, are you holding them to a two-year contract?

A: Ryan Mulhall – We are in the development stage, but the original vision is to have five quadrants in the State. We would not be looking for only new construction, it is also regarding new builds, relocations, and customer emergency restorations. We don’t want only a list, we would like specific targets within the State. Tennessee has implemented a similar structure.

Operations/Engineering Update – Scott Pappan

  • Day to day orders continue to be processed by engineering and operations.
  • The multi-node Hosted 911 network is completed. Going forward, we will add PSAPs as they choose to join the new Hosted network. There are 15 PSAPs currently installed.
  • 100GB Network Core Upgrade:
    • Transitioning circuits off our legacy core to our new infrastructure (Layer 2).
    • Moving forward with upgrading our new Internet/IP Infrastructure (Layer 3).
  • E911 Wireline Network Project (TDM/Ethernet Solution):
    • Currently ICN is installing two TDM/Ethernet over Ethernet circuits to allow HSEMD to connect to their data centers.
      • First location to West Des Moines installed.
      • Second location to Davenport will be installed over the next 30 days.
    • DS3’s from CenturyLink are scheduled to be delivered to the ICN late January/early February.
  • TDM Upgrade – Sunsetting legacy TDM over ATM to new TDM over Ethernet Network
    • Working with customers to remove TDM circuits, then network clean up to follow.
    • Orders are being submitted to remove old infrastructure.
  • IRHTP/Hospital Ciena Upgrades:
    • All IRHTP orders engineered with the exception of one or two. The orders have been passed to FNS in the field to be installed.
    • Clinics: 59 installed and 13 pending orders.
    • Total of 95 network devices have been installed on the IRHTP Network.
  • Virtualization Server Platform:
    • Virtualization Upgrade:
      • ConvergeOne is engaged to finish virtualization in Lucas and JFHQ.
      • 165 instances/servers will be supported internally.
  • Data/Network Integrity: To fix or improve upon operational efficiencies within the ICN.
    • TDM/ATM Cleanup.
    • Legacy Voice Cleanup.
    • Network consolidation/cleanup of facilities/huts.

COMMENTS:

Commissioner Lapointe – It seems like you all work together really well. In my mind there seems to be a lot of overlap, how do you determine who supervises what?

A: Scott Pappan described the management structure. Business Services’ sales engineers help work the opportunity and also work with the engineering staff. In engineering the details are worked out, if it includes a technical or policy issue then Network Services (Ryan’s team) will be pulled into the discussions. Before an opportunity goes to Operations, it is vetted by multiple divisions.

Chair Kniff McCulla – Has each of the Commissioners had a tour of ICN’s facilities? It was helpful to see how the organization interacts together.

Commissioner Lapointe – I have not here, but I toured the hub at Camp Dodge. That was interesting. I have not had a tour recently.

Scott Pappan described how Business Services interacts with the organization to engage other resources into the sales process to work towards a common goal.

Chair Kniff McCulla – Randy, do you have five sales personnel?

A: Randy Goddard – I have two sale engineers and five account consultants that are out in the field. Each account consultant has a sector they are accountable for. Everyone’s team supports the sales team and customer discussions.

Other Business:

Legislative Update  – Mark Johnson

It is the first week of session and formal activities are performed. The Governor provided her State of the State Address, the State of the Judiciary occurred, and the State of the Guard have been held. Committees are starting to meet. This year ICN did not submit a formal budget request. ICN Executive Leadership did have some discussions with the Iowa Department of Management. As part of the Governor’s proposed budget, she did include just over two million dollars for the ICN for DDoS mitigation and Firewall costs that have been occurring. We were aware that the line item was part of the Governor’s budget earlier this week. We will work with the subcommittee to provide the appropriate information.

There are a number of legislators that have requested information from us. We will see what legislation will be proposed in the future.

COMMENTS:

Commissioner Lapointe – It seems like we are in a situation where there is no subsidy from the legislature directly to the ICN. Are you saying that a subcommittee may place some money in the budget that may get to the ICN?

A: Mark Johnson – We eliminated our appropriation request when we moved to managed voice. We were receiving just over two million dollars in appropriated funds. There was some equipment appropriation received, traditionally by the ICN (about one million dollars), and one million dollars for supporting telecommunications on the Capitol Complex for state agencies. That was a task that was moved to the ICN back in the 1990s. With the partnership with CenturyLink to move to a managed voice platform, we eliminated the request for Voice communications on the capitol complex, and then we reduced the per seat cost for comparable services for the agencies and provided greater functionality using Managed Voice. ICN also did not request an appropriation last year. These are costs that we identified that we are not billing agencies for, but we are incurring. The fact that it was included in the governor’s budget could mean that it is beneficial.

ITTC Committee Update – Staff/Commission

Customer and Services Committee – Randy Goddard

Meeting Date: January 8, 2020.

Attendance: Commissioner Lange, Commissioner Holz, Lori Larsen, Ryan Mulhall, and Randy Goddard.

Topics Covered:

  • ICN’s authorized user requests. None.
  • New customers. One new customer.
  • Requests for waivers from certified users. None.
  • Services: E-rate Program Overview.
  • Sales outreach.
  • Customer complaints. None
  • Service related issues: Ryan Mulhall covered fiber outages (1).

Finance Committee – Mike Cruise

Meeting Date: January 14, 2020.

Attendance: Commissioner Olson, Commissioner Holz, and Mike Cruise.

Topics Covered:

  • Review of financials as presented today.
  • Discussion on annual report. The projected fiscal year number on the budget page needs to be updated at the end of the year with the final fiscal year numbers. Also provide an explanation of differences in the bottom line between our Budget to Actual Report and the Statement of Changes in Net Position for the year.

Personnel Committee – Mark Johnson

  • There were no personnel issues to discuss for the month of January.

COMMENTS:

None

Personnel Update – Deb Evans

An update was provided about Executive Director Phil Groner.

Public Comment:

None

Adjournment:

The ITTC meeting adjourned at 11:22 AM.

ATTESTED TO:

Barb Kniff McCulla - Chair, Iowa Telecommunications and Technology Commission