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office equipment, computers, and obsolescent communications devices. Slightly over half (52%) of the increase requested is for items which were postponed from FY 94 because of budget constraints. The major equipment items in the FY 95 purchase allocation (including postponed items) are as follows:
Frame Relay equipment for district communications $252,000 FDDI equipment for House backbone network growth $180,000 Ethernet equipment for member offices $250,000 ISIS server computers for workload growth $100,000 ISIS backup computers to provide reliability $150,000 Classroom equipment upgrades
Provision is also made for printer and disk upgrades, additional CD-ROM capability, and modem and gateway hardware.
The major software purchase costs are:
Mainframe operating systems software
Network management and communications software
Mainframe database management system upgrades
Security and antivirous software
Also included in this category are the upgrade and new release versions of currently installed software.
External Services The largest cost in this category, $705,000, is for subscriptions to databases for the Member Information Network from Associated Press, Reuters, USA Today, Dow Jones, LA Times, Congressional Quarterly, and others. There also are $240,000 for the use of an external service bureau for committee applications and $100,000 for hotsite backup for critical mainframe applications. The amount of $40,000 is allocated for contractor assistance in establishing facilities through which Members and committees can make information available to the public via the Internet. It also will be necessary to contract for assistance in Member office moves in the 104th Congress.
In FY 95, H.I.S. can continue to adequately meet current demand and assist House offices in making their operations more costeffective without any real growth in H.I.S. staff or operating expenses. However, the existing physical infrastructure; the networks, online databases, and computing facilities, used directly by Members and Committees; will not meet the expected demand. Accordingly, The FY 95 budget request includes $2,509,000 in capital improvements. This amount, 11% of the total FY 95 request, is necessary to upgrade and expand shared facilities to continue acceptable levels of reliability and performance. The two tables below show House infrastructure improvements supported by the H.I.S. budgets for FY 93, FY 94, and FY 95 exclusively for its customers; the first by customers, the second by category of technology.
These tables depict the impact of the funding shortfall in FY 94. Capacity upgrades deferred in FY 94 will be made as early as possible in FY 95 to avoid any degradation of service. Referring to the FY 95 column in the "category" table immediately above, Networks requires the largest amount. The principal need is to continue to expand the FDDI backbone network in order to shift the growing data traffic among office locations away from the older and slower Ethernet backbone, which is beginning to develop congestion points. The next largest infrastructure upgrade need is to support office systems. This support includes additional server computers for the increasingly popular ISIS system, use of the National Change of Address database, and resultant H.I.S.provided adjuncts to Member and Committee office systems. The House Electronic mail system will require another $40,000 to provide the capacity for the last few offices to participate. The investment for central computing is needed to upgrade computer security capabilities, including the off-site data storage necessary for disaster recovery. The amount in the customer service equipment category provides for upgrading and replacing equipment and software used for desktop publishing, chart making, and for user assistance and software support to Members and Committees.
ANALYSIS OF BUDGET RISKS. In keeping with the guidance received, the FY 95 budget request represents a minimalist approach. needs of offices that rely upon H.I.S. may not be fully satisfied. The areas where support to House offices may be delayed due to resource availability are these:
104th Congress Office Moves. H.I.S. shares responsibilities with office system vendors to remove and re-install systems in conjunction with new Congress office moves.
House Backbone Network. There are a limited number of FDDI router connections available.
Customer Service. Offices will need to become more selfsufficient as H.I.S. support staff are spread over a wider
Internet Access. Offices will look to H.I.S. for software, support, and training to exploit the Internet. H.I.S. cannot ensure that all offices will have optimal backbone network connections for Internet access.
ISIS Implementation. Demand for ISIS access will be limited by H.I.S.'s ability to expand the common "server computer" infrastructure on which its design is based.
District Office Support. Through networking, Members are distributing more work to district staff. H.I.S. resources for supporting remote users are extremely limited. Support Office Systems. House support offices require systems improvements that will tax H.I.S. resources. MicroMin Modernization. Redesign is needed to make this system work up to its potential in the Washington-district network mode.
The proposed budget will sustain current H.I.S. services and allow continuation of a multi-year program instituted to upgrade the data communication, computing and information infrastructure needed by Members and Committees. The focus of the following discussion is to provide an understanding of H.I.S.'s plans and objectives for FY 95. Appendix B outlines the breadth and depth of the baseline of systems and services provided to House offices by H.I.S. Appendix C contains narrative highlights of H.I.S. accomplishments during FY 93. The two taken together provide the background for the proposed budget.
H.I.S. Roles and Responsibilities.
H.I.S. has two roles. First, it is a service provider responding to and anticipating the specific information system and support needs of Members, Committees and Officers. Second, H.I.S. provides an infrastructure of shareable databases and networks.
As House offices have increasingly turned to computers and networks to improve their operations, H.I.S.'s responsibilities have grown as well. Virtually every office and operation in the House now make use of the "invisible services" provided by H.I.S. on which House Members and staff have come to rely.
The first is to protect
H.I.S. has two main responsibilities. the reliability and maintain the performance and capacity of the computers, networks, and related services on which the House depends for its day-to-day operations. The second is to seek additional improvements through technology. How H.I.S. supports these responsibilities is explained below.