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operations division. He has a task force at the highest level in the operations division whose sole purpose it is to continue focusing on the year 2000 issue.
I can answer questions at the end, if you want me to stop. [The statement follows:)
PREPARED STATEMENT OF HON. GREGORY S. CASEY Mr. Chairman, it is an honor for me to appear before the committee today to discuss the operations and budget of the Sergeant at Arms and to restate our commitment to quality service to our Senate customers.
First, a brief status report on our operations. In my testimony a year ago, I summarized twenty years worth of consultant reports recommending changes in the way the Senate Sergeant at Arms does business. I also outlined how we intended to reor. ganize the Sergeant at Arms organization to make it the customer focused, quality driven operation described in the Senate's emerging strategic plan.
Today I am pleased to report this reorganization is complete. We believe today's Sergeant at Arms is structured to provide outstanding customer service to support the Senate's mission critical systems, to provide state of the art office automation, constituent response programs, and assurance these systems are secure from threat, available on demand, and are Year 2000 compliant.
Our success in meeting both the Senate strategic plan and our own admittedly ambitious objectives is based on remaining focused on three management principles: understand customer needs and keep in touch with those expectations; use best management practices and rigorously evaluate every process; and develop and maintain a motivated and skilled workforce.
We have created a new Customer Relations Department that will provide a single point of contact for all customer concerns about services, quality, and new product and support requirements. We have a Quality Assurance Council, comprised of representatives from member offices, committees, and other service and support offices within the Senate; their chief function is focused on continuous improvement.
We have a reinvigorated Human Resource Office providing management training, establishing career ladders, pay for performance, recruitment and retention programs for our employees, and meeting the requirement of the Congressional Accountability Act.
As we migrate some of our financial operations to the Secretary of the Senate, we are converting our financial operations office to a management review office to ensure our Quarterly Report will become increasingly more detailed and valuable for you and for us.
We have consolidated our Operations Division and eliminated duplication of services. To this division, we added two new departments: (1) the Office of Program Management, adds new discipline to project management, (2) the Office of the Systems Architect will ensure our information technology infrastructure remains visionary with an eye toward, not only our current, but future technology needs.
And, in conjunction with the Secretary of the Senate, we are developing a Senate Joint Office of Education and Training. As we discussed here last year, we must invest much more in our human resources.
In addition to doing that which we do to support our Senate customers, we've also been tasked with implementing our share of the emerging Senate Strategic Plan. The Sergeant at Arms has the responsibility for implementing these four (on chart) specific goals as well as providing all the technology for the Secretary's mission critical systems.
Mr. Chairman, each of our strategic goals were discussed in great detail with the Strategic Planning Task Force in February. I would be pleased to make a copy of our report available to you.
Operationally speaking, this is not the same Sergeant at Arms it was a year ago. But rather than talk generally, I know a couple of the tasks we are currently involved with that are of particular concern to you.
There isn't a task more important for us to succeed at than meeting the challenges of making the Senate Year 2000 compliant. Experts suggest, what is so complicated about the Year 2000 problem is not the technical fix to a particular computer or piece of software—but the complexity of managing the enormous scale of the project.
In October of 1996 we began implementation of a structured and disciplined Year 2000 program which comports to best practices as identified by the General Accounting Office.
The program is a five phase approach (chart).
Phase one is Awareness. On this, we have been working with Senate offices over the past year to make them aware of Year 2000 issues including those which may be unique to their offices.
Phase two is Assessment.-We have identified core business applications and systems, completed a hard inventory and prioritized their conversion or replacement. These are the systems and tools that support the critical operations of the Senate.
Phase three is Renovation.-Converting, replacing or eliminating applications and systems and modifying their interfaces. Our renovation strategy for the mission critical systems are as follows: -Office automation networks and desktop computers will be compliant through
routine life-cycle replacements and "bios” upgrades. In plain English, the vast majority of our desktop computers will only require a software upgrade to the operating system to become compliant. -Core business applications, like the Senate's financial management and legislative information systems, have been identified by our Y2K consultant, Mitretek, and the GAO, as our most problematic Y2K issue. The Senate's strategy here is total replacement of these applications and hardware. On the hardware side, the SAA Operations Division, is already testing a newly installed mainframe and related operating system.
Hov er, the software for the financial management and legislative information systems is complicated. The Sergeant at Arms is working with the project sponsor and the project team to develop contingency plans to mitigate the risk. - Data and telecommunications networks are being addressed in our previously
approved 5 year network upgrade program. They are generally compliant or are being upgraded with assistance from our network vendors. Phase four is Validation.-Test, verify and validate applications and systems.
Phase five is Implementation. Follow our plan or, if need be, implement contingency plans if necessary.
We are currently validating our methodologies and project status with our Y2K consultant, Mitretek, and the GAO. Additionally, we have completed the "hard" inventory developed in the assessment phase. The ongoing effort at renovation allows me to advise you today, of the 8,258 desk and laptop computers currently in the inventory, 615 are already compliant, 6,184 are compliant ready.
Second to Y2K in importance to the Senate Community, is Information System Security or INFOSEC. Consultants and GAO have been recommending an INFOSEC initiative for years.
Last year my office obtained the services of an exceptional professional from the National Security Agency, who has spent several months assisting us in developing policy, structure, guidelines and recommendations. The Rules Committee recently authorized the implementation of an Information Systems Security plan based on that work and we are now in the process of selecting an INFOSEC Director.
I also want to touch briefly on the issue of the Internet. We've been using one of the nation's foremost Internet consultants in helping us understand where technology will take us in the next millennium. One of their comments bring a shocking perspective to our task in this area. “The Internet will swallow up telephone and TV
Last year, we facilitated 15 million outside email contacts with Senate offices. This year, we expect that number to double as the volume of Internet users in the United States doubles.
How we accommodate this increase, and harness this communication tool, will be critical to the success of every Senate customer from now on.
Last week we put the finishing touches on an ambitious tactile plan for putting the Senate at the front end of this technological marvel before the beginning of the next Congress. We think this $2 million initial effort can be funded through the existing Sergeant at Arms budget.
Now, speaking of the budget, this is where the rubber meets the road. Are you getting what you pay for?
First, in terms of efficiency, our original fiscal year 1999 budget request developed last fall, was the same as this year's budget-$97.9 million, that number was a real $2 million less than the previous year.
Since then, we have settled our reorganization and began to more fully reengineer what we do. That has lead to a revised budget request for $94.9 million—a full $3 million less than our original request. This savings results
from a combination of operational efficiencies and the re-evaluation of projects. The reduced fiscal year 1999 budget request of $94.9 million consists of $34.4 million in salaries and $60.5 million in expenses. Salaries increased by $1.4 million or 4 percent from last year, with a corresponding decrease in expenses. The expense request is for $60.5 million, $4.4 million or nearly 7 percent below fiscal year 1998. Expense savings are achieved by better managing ongoing activities and a careful evaluation of new technology projects. We have deferred several initiatives in favor of more cost effective solutions and have deferred others for which there is insufficient customer demand.
Second, we will operate with the same 780 FTE's we had this year—47 FTE's less than 1997, while still implementing a new Education and Training Office, an all new project management office, a new INFOSEC office, a new systems architect, a fully staffed cus omer service division, and a new office dedicated to inter and intranet development.
Third, we continue to make progress on our new strategic projects, including year 2000 compliance, improved information security, and upgrades to our infrastructure which allows us to take full advantage of current and emerging technologies.
To understand how we link our strategic initiatives to the budget, you first need to understand the budget.
-35 percent supports state offices ($22 million); -16 percent D.C. office equipment and communications; -13 percent supports CSF ($8 million); and -9 percent produces the ID's, issues the parking permits, produces graphics, tele
vises the Senate, and pays the Doorkeepers. In other words, 86 percent of the fiscal year 1999 budget request is consumed in day-to-day operations.
Key to linking dollars to the strategic plan is implementing strategic updates as a recurring business strategy. Included in the above is exactly that. Replacement of non-Y2K compliant desktop computers with those that are Y2K, etc.
Mr. Chairman, let me just say how proud I am of the managers and employees of the Sergeant at Arms. We embarked on an ambitious organizational remake less than a year ago. We set out to change the structure and culture.
That asked a lot of our people and they have performed wonderfully. Few will ever know or appreciate how difficult this task has been-but I do and I thank them all.
Senator BENNETT. I congratulate you on the thoroughness and specificity of your assessment. We are, as Chairman Greenspan told us in the Banking Committee I know that is a name that will get Senator Dorgan awake simply by invoking it.
We are engaged in a truly unique situation in history. We have no prior experience with this, and I think Murphy is probably predominant in all of these operations, so the more time you can give yourself for testing at the back end of this process the better off you are going to be.
You may be in compliance with the GAO windows. The message is that we have no idea that those windows are really the right windows. We have never done anything like this before, and you do everything you can to see that the testing phase of the implementation and validation, to use their terms, is as long as possible, because the concern that I have Government-wide as I look at this is that everyone is saying, we can be ready by this date to start, and you look at the amount of testing time they have, and it is very narrow. Particularly, DOD has a very narrow testing phase.
So, with that concern, Senator Dorgan, do you have any questions on this before we go to the next?
Senator DORGAN. It was a good presentation.
Second, too, the importance of year 2000 is another issue that we need to take care of, which is systems information security, or INFOSEC. This is something the GAO has been telling us we have needed to do for a long time.
Last year, with the work of the Rules Committee, we brought in a professional from the National Security Agency, Pam Kelly. She spent several months preparing recommendations on how we can put together an INFOSEC office for the U.S. Senate. The Rules Committee recently authorized the implementation of that plan. We are now in the process of selecting and hiring an INFOSEC director.
I would like to touch briefly on the issue of the Internet, and I know we do not have a lot of time. Suffice it to say we have got a world-class consultant also dealing with us on intranet and Internet. One of the comments that they made to us sort of puts this into a stark perspective, as well: The Internet will soon swallow up television and telephones.
So we are aware of that. And we have put the finishing touches on an ambitious tactical plan for putting the Senate on the sort of leading edge of the Internet technology before the beginning of the next Congress. There is a $2 million initiative that we are funding inside the budget of the Sergeant at Arms.
Speaking of budget, first, in terms of our efficiency, Mr. Chairman. This year's budget was $97.9 million, which itself was a $2 million reduction over last year. Since we submitted our original request for the same as we had last year, we have settled our reorganization. And because of that, we have been able to fully reengineer some of our services. This has led to a revised budget request of $94.9 million, or $3 million less than we asked for last fall.
The savings result from a combination of our operational efficiencies and the reevaluation of some of the projects. It consists of $94.9 million; $34.4 million of it is salaries—that is an increase of 4 percent, or $1.4 million; and a decrease of $4.4 million, or 7 percent, in the area of expenses. And on the expense side, we have achieved that, again, by better managing some of our ongoing projects and by analyzing and deferring some of the initiatives or eliminating or reducing some of those initiatives where we simply found no customer or insufficient customer demand.
We will operate at the same 780 FTE's in the coming year that we had last year. That is 47 FTE's less than we had the year before. We are going to be able to do that with the 780 FTE's while at the same time bringing online the new Office of Education and Training, the new Project Management Office, the new INFOSEC Office, the new systems architect, a fully staffed customer service division, and a dedicated Internet and intranet department.
Third, we will continue to make progress on our strategic initiatives, including year 2000, basically, by making sure that the dollars that we spend are strategically linked to the dollars that we spend on our ongoing activities. And in my prepared text I talk to you about how our budget basically breaks down. It basically works this way: 86 percent of all the money that we expend are in the day-to-day operations. That leaves a very small sliver of dollars to address strategic initiatives. So what we are doing is linking those dollars to our reoccurring business strategy.
Year 2000 is a perfect case in point. As we move the old computers, the old systems, out, we bring in those that are part of the strategic initiative. And that is what we are using Mr. Chris Day, who was our financial officer, who is now our management officer, to make sure that we do—that we bring some of our discipline on our strategic planning to our everyday operational expenses.
Also, we are pursuing the IT protocol, which we believe is a partnering effort with all of the Senate family, the Senate offices, who have initiatives that they would like to see in their individual offices. That helps us develop a picture of the architect for the future, and helps us expend dollars through the individual office CSF accounts, computer accounts, to also help us meet the strategic planning objectives.
Mr. Chairman, that would conclude my prepared testimony. I stand ready to answer any questions you may have. But I would like to say that I have been blessed with a tremendous staff. We started a very, very aggressive reorganization in the last year. We set out to change the culture and the structure of a very large organization. We asked a lot of our people. And our people performed magnificently, and sometimes under very difficult circumstances. Those people are here. And if I could ask them to stand so that you could see who these people are.
Senator BENNETT. Very good. Mr. CASEY. Thank you. They have done a very magnificent job, and I am very proud of what they have been able to accomplish in the last year.
Senator BENNETT. Thank you. I am impressed by the numbers on your chart. I notice that all of the numbers are down except the FTE's and the salaries. I would be interested to know, if by maintaining the FTE's at the same level and the salary number at the same level, how you are handling the mandatory COLA increases?
Mr. CASEY. It is built into the budget. The mandatory COLA is built into the budget.
Senator BENNETT. Well, how does that work, if you have the same number of people as you had last year?
Mr. CASEY. We are increasing the salary component. As we did last year, we increased it.
Senator BENNETT. Well, here, the salary component is flat. Oh, I see. I apologize. I am going from original to revised. I should go from 1998 to revised. OK. That helps me. Thank you. I apologize for missing that point.
Senator Dorgan, do you have any questions?
Senator DORGAN. Well, Mr. Chairman, I think Mr. Casey has done a good job as Sergeant at Arms. And I think this presentation