The Pennington County Board of Commissioners approved on Tuesday the purchase of software that will replace computer programs the Highway Department has utilized since the early 1990s.
Software currently used by the department was developed in-house for the management of road, fleet, fuel, sales and inventory information as well as payroll and work-order processing. Highway Superintendent Joseph Miller said at Tuesday's board meeting that significant upgrades haven't been made since 2008.
Upkeep had largely been the responsibility of county information technology employees, but Miller said they are too few in number to maintain the software today.
"Talking to IT, it's really just a bear for them to keep a programmer on to do this stuff," he said Tuesday.
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The $43,850 agreement for PubWorks-brand software that commissioners approved Tuesday includes ongoing vendor support for an annual fee of $5,900. The latter figure also accounts for the cost of licensing renewals. Other options eyed by the department were said to be too expensive.
PubWorks, Miller said, will meet most of the same needs as current department software. In a phone call Wednesday, he said it could be up and running in Pennington County by the end of the year.
Migrating data from the current system to the new one will take about as much time, he said. The conversion will cost an additional $6,750, the department estimates.