The deeply flawed Integrated Case Management computer system comes with a heavy price tag for British Columbians, and unfortunately this is not the first time taxpayers have had to foot the bill for poorly managed information technology systems implemented by the B.C. Liberals.
So far, taxpayers are on the hook for more than $400 million for systems that fail to meet ministerial needs, are poorly implemented, or are downright faulty.
Integrated Case Management: $194 million
- The cross-ministry computer system used in social service work and responsible for the safety of children had a projected cost of $107 million, but is now projected to cost $182 million. The Liberals have since committed an additional $12 million to try to fix the flawed system.
- With all six phases set to be complete by 2016 and the Liberals already millions over budget, the increasing cost to British Columbians remains unknown.
BCeSIS: $97 million
- After the Ministry of Education wasted years attempting to make the British Columbia Enterprise Student Information System work, and spending nearly $97 million, the Liberals scrapped the system. They have yet to announce how much replacing it will cost.
E-Health: $138 million
- In 2010, an Auditor General’s report stated that the implementation of E-Health, the online service that provides medical information, was behind schedule, over budget, and poorly planned.
- B.C.’s share of capital costs for E-Health increased from the initial estimate of $30 million to $138 million.
Carenet: $2.3 million
- A 2004 audit found that the B.C. Liberals showed a lack of due diligence when investing in Carenet, a project to create secure internet hookups for social agencies. The Liberals wrote off $2.3 million after the contractors filed for bankruptcy.
New Democrat finance critic Bruce Ralston: “The Liberals have failed to learn from their mistakes. In 2008 and again in 2010, the Auditor General released reports that highlighted similar IT problems within the ministry of health and criticized the government for not thoroughly analysing the costs, risks, and benefits of new information technology systems.
“Given the importance of the work these types of systems are meant to support, not to mention the huge financial commitment that lands on taxpayers shoulders, it’s a sign of gross mismanagement that the Liberal government continues to roll out systems that simply don’t work.”