City of Homer
Office of the Systems Manager
491 East Pioneer Avenue
Homer, Alaska 99603-7645
Fax: (907) 235-3148
Telephone: (907) 435-3156
TO: HOMER CITY COUNCIL
FROM: NICK POOLOS, SYSTEMS MANAGER
THROUGH: REGINA MAURAS, FINANCE DIRECTOR
SUBJECT: ALLOCATE $14,310 FOR THE PURCHASE OF TABLET DEVICES
Per Council’s direction, following the Council Work Session on April 16, 2012; Nick Poolos, Jo Johnson, and Walt Wrede evaluated several tablets in the Homer Public Library’s collection. The 10” tablet form factor provided a screen large enough to easily read emails and view council packets, while still being a lightweight highly portable device.
Per the recommendations from the City Attorney, the Mayor and Council should be reading, responding and composing email from a City provided device. In the subsequent discussions at the June 13th meeting, Council raised concerns over the cost of purchasing tablets for their own use versus extending City IT resources support to the Mayor and Council’s personal computing devices. The overall cost for the software licenses and staff time to support each personal device came to $338.60 the first year and $125.00 reoccurring every year after, or a cost of $713.60 for 3 years. Any change to the makeup of Council would bring a new personal device which would incur the full $338.60 cost for the first year of the new device.
The other use of a tablet device would be for accessing the Council Packet thus saving the cost of printing, assembling, and distributing the main packet and supplemental packet materials. The council packet is produced, with an average cost of $14.50 per copy, 23 times per year. The cost of printing, assembling and duplicating the supplemental packet materials is another $9.27 per copy. The yearly cost of producing the packet materials is $546.71 ($333.50 for the main packet and $213.21 for the supplemental materials) per copy.
Given the costs of producing the paper packet, extending the tablet program to the department heads also makes fiscal sense. Purchasing 20 tablets and accessories at a total cost of $14,309 ($715.49 per tablet) would allow for City Departments to full participate in the paperless council meetings.
By going to a digital packet, the City will save $8,479 over three years and $23,238 over five years. Also, paper reduction for Council Meetings aligns with the City’s Climate Action Plan.
RECCOMENDATION: Allocate the funds to purchase 20 tablets.