ARLINGTON INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY ADVISORY COMMISSION MEETING MINUTES
7:30 PM, Wednesday, April 25, 2012
1st Floor Conference Room Azalea-103
Courthouse Plaza (2100 Clarendon Blvd.)
Chair: Joe Pelton
Vice Chair: Frank Jazzo
Members Not Present:
Jenny Shu Ho
Jack Belcher, CIO
Rob Billingsley, Cable Administrator
Members of the Public:
Cheryl Johnson, CTC (County Contractor)
Cable Company Representatives: Marie Schuler, Comcast
1. Meeting called to order by Joe Pelton, ITAC Chair
7:30 pm; Quorum Present
2. Public Comment
3. Approval of Minutes from Previous Meeting and Agenda:
Minutes of March 28, 2012 meeting, as well as the April 25, 2012 Agenda were approved by general consensus.
4. Administrative Issues:
- The Chair stated the importance of Teleworking, and requested the County prepare a presentation for the next ITAC meeting, and place it on the May 23, 2012 agenda. The Chair also hoped the County would review the number of employees eligible for Teleworking and increase the participation in the program.
- The Chair asked if since the adoption of the County budget, were there any significant impacts on funding for IT purposes. Jack Belcher, CIO, related several items that were in the budget including an improved records management system for the Clerk of the Court, a technology position for AED to support the Artisphere, etc.
- The Chair mentioned there may be a joint meeting of the Emergency Preparedness Advisory Commission and ITAC members upcoming, and requested the CIO provide a long term budget presentation concerning ConnectArlington (formerly CNET) similar to the one presented to ITAC by Ajit Arya, Deputy CIO.
- The Chair and Member Larry Mayer both expressed the need for ITAC members to testify at public hearings whenever ConnectArlington or other IT related topics are discussed.
- The Chair stated he has indicated to Jay Fisette the need to fill several ITAC member vacancies, and requested ITAC members nominate likely candidates. There are currently two open slots, and Mike Green’s membership concludes at the end of this Summer.
- Cable Administrator Rob Billingsley provided highlights the County Manager’s (CM) decision regarding distribution of Verizon PEG related payments. The Working Group of PEG and INET representatives proposed that Verizon payments for PEG capital should equal the Comcast payments, and the CM agreed. The second major proposal was that the accumulated funds from prior years use a process similar to the County’s budget process where a system of priorities and proposals would be subject to scoring to determine how funds should be specifically allotted. The CM has decided to hold those funds for use on ConnectArlington’s needs. The third proposal by the Working Group was to have a paid consultant review operations to determine how the PEGs might consolidate their activities. The CM denied that in favor of ConnectArlington. CM agreed that the distribution model could be reviewed after the Comcast renewal when more is known about the overall funding picture. The Working Group will continue to meet quarterly to discuss resource sharing opportunities. The Chair requested reports on these meetings in the future.
- The ITAC website has been updated to reflect the updated meeting schedule, and the ITAC Charge, etc.
5. Legislative Updates:
Vice Chair, Frank Jazzo, provided the following information:
- The FCC Chairman announced a new apps challenge and apps economy legislation at a roundtable with public and private sector leaders to discuss ways to capitalize on apps economy innovation.
- The Technical Advisory Board for First Responder Interoperability announced a public workshop to be held April 23, 2012, in order to develop minimum technical requirements to ensure a nationwide level of interoperability for the nationwide public safety broadband network.
- Verizon announced that it will no longer sell DSL over copper in areas where FiOS is available.
- The FCC Wireless Telecommunications Bureau in cooperation with NATOA is hosting a public workshop to promote mobile broadband by collocating wireless antennas on communications towers and other structures on May 1, 2012.
- The FCC is seeking comment on the transition process for 700 MHz public safety broadband waiver recipients. Comments were due April 20, 2012.
- The FCC initiated its periodic review of the exclusive contract prohibition between cable operators and their affiliated programmers. Comments are due June 22, 2012.
- The FCC announced a freeze of applications for new stations and major modifications in the 470-512 MHz private land mobile band (“T-Band”).
6. Cable Administrator Report
County/Comcast Renewal of the Cable TV Franchise
- Informal discussions between the County and Comcast began on March 26, 2012. The County began by presenting what it feels are the key terms that should be in the agreement, and Comcast is now reviewing those.
- The Chair asked about the availability of any information that came from the Cable TV Renewal Focus Groups last Summer. Mr. Billingsley, Cable Administrator, explained that such information and data are part of a County process that is not yet complete, but should be available in some form within a few months.
Verizon Question on Copper DSL removals
- As Verizon builds out the FiOS network they may remove the copper-based NID, or the copper drop, or segments to the nearest pole when they install fiber to the ONT. The Chair sent a letter to the President of Verizon Virginia about costs, as well as impacts on competitiveness, and that ITAC was extremely concerned. No response has been returned from Verizon at this point. The letter also mentioned the need for a Verizon representative
- The Cable Administrator has also been reviewing the progress of build out to the Extended Area and for Multi-Dwelling Units (MDUs), and will be reviewing records with the local Verizon staff in the week following the April 2012 ITAC meeting.
- Verizon has scheduled the installation of free drops at an 11 unit County owned MDU facility for the homeless at Sullivan House.
- The Chair asked for a report at the May 2012 meeting listing the updated number of County Buildings and Schools connected with free drops.
7. Briefing on ConnectArlington Status and Telecommunications Master Plan
- Jack Belcher reported the County has been developing ConnectArlington with a “laser focus” recently, and is on schedule for the most part. Currently the system has 55 traffic signals connected online, as well as 16 public safety locations where emergency staff can “plug into” the network at critical locations.
- The Chair and other Members indicated the need to have demonstrations of public relations opportunities, and media events, e.g., fire truck plugging into an emergency network location, etc. to raise public awareness of ConnectArlington and how the community will benefit from the new capabilities it will bring, such as “smart buildings”.
- The County is looking into having a set of “follow on” focus groups centering more on requirements that will benefit from ConnectArlington, e.g. Education, Public Safety, etc. Attendees will probably be invited from community organizations to provide the desired information. The separate focus group meetings will be followed by a more general meeting of all the attendees to hear and share more ideas.
8. Goals for 2012 including Orientation and Out Reach Program
- In considering the future of Arlington intelligent technology, social media, digital textbooks, energy savings, telecommuting, the Chair suggested having a document to outline what the nature of this initiative will be.
- Frank Reeder stated he would put together such an outline of what areas or sessions could be crafted to cover related topics.
- Members Cohn, Caughran, Mayer, and Crannell and the Chair will also participate in the effort to develop a “catchy title,” an outline, and candidate speakers for a series of presentations of the Intelligent Community concept. Other members of ITAC are also welcome to join the effort.
10. Adjournment: 8:35 pm