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I will start going through the items in a minute, but I certainly want to say that I look forward to a productive and successful working relationship, as we both work, the committee as a whole works to have a more open House. We definitely share your views on those issues.
To help the Members of the subcommittee go through the various accounts, page 3 of your briefing book has kind of an overview of the different accounts that we will be going over this morning, and then subsequent pages follow that go into more detail.
The salaries and expenses page, the different breakdowns start with the House leadership offices that are pages 4 through 7 of your book, the Members' Clerk hire is on page 8, the committee employees' budgets are on pages 9 and 10.
ACCOUNT CHANGE IN APPROPRIATION BILL
Mr. PACKARD. We will have to change the account structure of the bill in order to reflect the reorganized committee funding proc
Mr. FAULKNER. That is correct.
Mr. PACKARD. We will appreciate your recommendations on how that is reflected.
Mr. FAULKNER. We will definitely be submitting those. The Committee on the Budget, including its studies, is on page 11 of your briefing packet. The standing committee and special and select committee budgets are pages 12 and 13. The House Information Systems is on page 14.
HOUSE INFORMATION SYSTEMS
Mr. PACKARD. On that, incidentally, we know that you have transferred the House Information Systems to your office.
Would you like to have a detailed budget justification-we would like to have a justification for this move, and you might want to present that for the record.
[The information follows:]
HOUSE INFORMATION SYSTEMS
Request. H.I.S. requests an appropriation of $16,684,644 for fiscal year 1996 (FY '96), which is an increase of $667,664 (4.2%) over the FY '95 appropriation. Reimbursements to H.I.S.are forecast at $6,526,000, an increase of $106,000 (1.7%) above the FY '95 estimate. The requested appropriation plus the reimbursements would fully fund H.I.S.'s proposed operating budget of $23,210,644, an increase of $773,644 (3.4%) over the FY 95 authorized level. Mandatory and price level increases in the amount of $504,277 comprise sixty-five percent of the increase. Workload changes add $373,863 to the budget, which is partially offset by $104,496 in reduced equipment costs. Staffing level remains at the 1995 level of 250 employees.
Funding. Twenty-eight percent of the proposed budget would be funded by $6,526,000 in reimbursement revenue. Bar Chart A shows H.I.S.'s funding history from 1992 through 1995 and the 1996 budget year. Organizations which reimburse H.I.S. are:
The estimate of GAO reimbursement anticipates $900,000 from one additional service to be installed in 1995. New business is expected from growth in the existing customer base of the National Change of Address (NCOA) processing and more GAO systems.
Charts B and C present the budget in four major categories: (1) salaries & staff support, (2) rental & maintenance, (3) purchases, and (4) external services.
(1) Salaries & Staff Support, $14,287,076. This category accounts for 62% of the budget, with salaries costing $13,909,201 and staff support consisting of the following:
The salary budget is $407,201 (3%) higher than that of the previous year. Of that amount, $129,544 is necessary to fully fund the FY '95 authorized staffing level (i.e.. annualization of 1995 costs); the rest of the increase, $277,657, is the estimated cost of meritorious increases and promotions anticipated for FY 96. The amount earmarked for meritorious increases would be approximately the same cost as the proposed 2.7% federal comparability adjustment (COLA) prorated 9 months (2.025%), which is in accord with Finance Office budgeting guidelines. Since 1990, H.I.S. has applied a pay policy in which staff are recommended for pay increases based on merit and performance evaluations in lieu of schedules or automatic adjustments.
The cost of staff support is expected to increase by $42,875 (12%). The primary reason is that next year offices will pay for telephone monthly line charges for local service which previously had been paid by the Clerk. Those charges actually will add $98,228 to H.I.S.'s telephone bill, but the additional cost will be partially offset by a $73,000 (42%) reduction in the Training budget. Other categories will increase slightly: the Travel budget was increased by $14,000 in anticipation of heavier workload in District office support (communications and office automation); the cost of Technical Publications will rise by $1,575 because of price increases and also for the purchase of new mainframe processor technical manuals.
(2) Rental and Maintenance, $4,687,593, which is 20% of the budget, includes payments for leased mainframe computer and communications equipment, software user license fees, and maintenance contracts for both leased and owned equipment.
A $391,477 (29.2%) increase is budgeted for software payments. A large portion of the added cost is attributable to significant increases in the base license fees. In addition to annual inflation in mainframe software license renewal costs, most of the vendors apply a policy of tier pricing whereby fees are set according to the relative power of the customer's mainframe processor as compared to an industry determined scale. H.I.S. upgraded the central processor in 1995 which triggered automatic increases in the base fees of most of the software currently installed. Also, the annual software cost base will be affected by additional software and upgrades, scheduled for installation in the later months of 1995, for which H.I.S. will incur the full twelve monthly payments in FY '96.
The equipment rental and maintenance budget, on the other hand, is reduced in 1996 by $352,884 (-10.7%), largely as a result of savings realized in a mainframe CPU lease agreement H.I.S. negotiated in 1995.
(3) Purchases, $3,281,059, comprise 14% of the budget. This category is further broken down into purchases of (a) equipment ($1,931,388), (b) software ($899,800), and (c) supplies ($449,871).
(a) Equipment, $1,931,388. $1.1 million are earmarked in the Communications Services Division for: continuation of the Fiberoptic Distributed Data Interface (FDDI) upgrade, and backbone backup in preparation for the Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM) expansion of House network throughput; LAN/WAN routers for Member offices; Ethernet installations in Member and Committee offices: and data communications improvements supporting the Cannon Office Building renovation project. An additional $830,000 is budgeted to purchase equipment for Committee and House Office support in the following applications: Internet servers, client support systems, imaging and optical disk storage, document work flow systems development, development of Windows versions of Micromin, and LAN Windows systems.
(b) Software, $899,800. Procurement of software costing $50,000 is planned for the expansion of the Postal Service National Change of Address (NCOA) system at H.I.S., for which reimbursements of $400,000 are expected. Additional planned software procurement includes: Internet and House Email/Softswitch expansion, client/server, knowledge-based user assistance software, House network management, 24 hour electronic monitoring and capture of data (LOGICON), Unix migration of information databases, and generalized mainframe database management (DBMS/SYBASE) software.