InforME Board Meeting

February 24, 2004

Members in Attendance:
Dan Gwadosky, Board Chair
Jeff Harmon
Rick Record
Marilyn Lutz
Carrie Gott
Dick Hinkley
Gary Nichols
Jaynie Higgins
Anne Schink
Gerry Dube

Others Present:
Chip Gavin, staff to the Chair
Dick Thompson, CIO
Kelly Hokkanen, InforME
Todd Tolhurst, InforME
Renee Loring, InforME
Ian Talmage, InforME

Meeting Opens:  

I. General Managers Report

Carrie Gott gives an overview of the December/January General Managers Report.

Carrie introduces the new InforME Graphic Designer, Ian Talmage.

General Manager’s Overview

Overview of 2003:

Marketing and Promotional:


Press Releases/Media

The news of the First Lady’s website launch was picked up by local media across the state.


The 2004 eGov awards are fast approaching. In preparation, we’ve completed a calendar of dates that nominations are due. The first awards nominations are due in March.


Service Expansion

With the collaborative effort of the Secretary of State’s office and InforME, municipalities continue to participate in Rapid Renewal. The grand total to date is 55! The meeting dates and status of participating hopefuls can be seen here:

Date           Event                          Town                       
12/04/03     Rapid Renewal Live       Raymond

12/16/03     Rapid Renewal Live       Gray

12/17/03     Rapid Renewal Beta      Augusta

01/16/04     Rapid Renewal Beta      Whitefield

01/22/04     Rapid Renewal Visit      Rumford

02/02/04     Rapid Renewal Live       Winslow

Aircraft Registration continues to expand to those municipalities with airports and registered aircraft. Two new municipalities joined the program: Machias and Limington, with a total of 14 participating municipalities.  

Dog Licensing service is in beta with volunteering municipalities, totaling 38 participating municipalities.


Q. What is the adoption percentage of all municipal services?

A. (InforME) The average rate is around 8%

Q. Are we working to encourage citizen participation?

A. (InforME) Yes, we are currently working with the Secretary of State’s Office to launch a growth campaign.

The online Sex Offender Registry search has been a tremendous success. The service launched in December, and since then the adoption is 100%! There have been more than 2.5 million searches on the site since December.


Q. How much of the traffic comes from Maine?

A. (InforME) We are not currently tracking this figure.

Portal Stats for 2003:

Still working on fine tuning the portal statistics. The Board will receive an updated version as soon as possible.

Carrie Gott provides an overview of highlighted stats including subscriber count, adoption rates and a service success story.

Creative Services


 Agency Design Projects

InforME’s Creative Services department has completed and launched websites for:

We also completed the design and production of the InforME Annual Report.

Application Design

We have provided quality assurance testing for several applications and completed revisions to Water Test Kits and Crash Reporting.

Portal Services


InforME is providing ongoing support to agency webmasters for Dreamweaver, AutoForms, and the What’s New tool.


Services Launched

Turkey Permit Lottery Launch Moose Lottery Launch IF&W HIS Launch Sex Offenders Launch MYDAUS Survey Launch Campground Reservation Launch

Many of our services have recently shifted from discussion and planning to development.


Weekly UCC Bulk data and images available Water Test Kit purchases in testing Archives in testing Department of Marine Resources license renewal in testing Crash Report in development




Network Update:

Todd Tolhurst gives the Board an update on recent network issues: Over past month the portal has experienced an unusual number of downtimes. Todd explains the causes:

Cause 1: One of InforME's critical servers, www2, has been experiencing an overload trying to accommodate agency ftp and front page updates. The server would need to be restarted, thus incurring down time.

Solution: We replaced this server with a new version and transferred all to the new version. A cluster is on its way as a permanent solution.

Cause 2: New battery packs were needed for the servers. The battery had faded prior to the replacement order being received

Solution: InforME has purchased and replaced all batteries. No reoccurrence is expected.

InforME in the process of updating network bandwidth. We are looking into redirecting traffic for cache copies that would enable this to be taken off the server.


Q. Is InforME considering  a vendor?

A. (InforME) We are looking to leverage NIC data services for the redirect. This caching server will still continue to run if any other servers are down.

CIO’s office also working with InforME in exploring alternate data centers for state. InforME may explore mutual opportunities.

Project Status Report:

Carrie Gott reviews the status of InforME projects in the queue.

Services launched:

Seasonal services launched:


Q. What is the project for streaming audio consist of?

A. The service is in pre RFP phase to offer project discussions via the Internet. Based upon initial video wants, after analyzing the size of video, it was suggested to streamline the audio to shorten time and much better distribution. InforME would extract audio and make it available via MP3 or CD ROM for the agency to distribute.

Service Requests/Changes

1.   Department of Agriculture has requested an additional tours search function to be added to the farms search pages.

Estimated Hours: 35  

Public Benefit:   will allow the public to search for farm tours, activities and special events in Maine

Portal Benefit: free service; low volume

Agency Benefit: no time savings

State Mandate: none

Privacy/Security issues to consider: none

2.   Capitol Campus, the state employee training entity, has requested an online class description and registration service.  

Resources required: TBD

Public benefit: benefits state employees wishing to gain further job training

Portal Benefit: free service; no payment collected; we do have requests for similar services (eg. SPO conference registration service). Our intent is to develop a generic tool that could be used for registration services across agencies.

Agency Benefit: Better communications and marketing of state training courses

State Mandate: None

Privacy/Security issues to consider: None

3.   Baxter State Park has requested a campground availability search service.

Resources required: TBD

Public Benefit: Convenient campground availability search available 24/7

Portal Benefit: Free service; volume TBD

Agency Benefit: Reduce phone inquiries

State Mandate: None

Privacy/Security issues to consider: None

4.   The Accessible Recreation Committee has requested that InforME develop an online survey system to gather information on disability access to recreational facilities, and to report the results of the survey. The survey is estimated to require approximately 350 hours of development time.

Resources required: 350 hours of development, creative and project management time.

Public Benefit: Those businesses who choose to complete the survey will be submitting handicap accessible facilities information to the public. The usefulness of the survey will be limited to survey participation. We’ve been provided no data on how many it will benefit.

Portal Benefit: No financial benefit and limited benefit as far as public relations. No data has been provided to suggest how many businesses would participate in the survey and how many people would potentially use the data.

Agency Benefit: There is no agency, but a committee made up of policy members (i.e. Muskie School and non-profit organizations)

State Mandate: None

Privacy/Security issues to consider: None

5. The Department of Labor has requested that InforME develop an application which would permit job postings from the State Job Center and the Maine Software Developer’s Association (and other trade groups) to appear on each other’s web sites.

Resources required: TBD

Public Benefit: Undetermined. Early stages of discussion and the definition of the project has not yet formed.

Portal Benefit: TBD

Agency Benefit: TBD

State Mandate: TBD

Privacy/Security issues to consider: TBD

6. PUC has requested that InforME develop a system to permit telephone companies to upload quality-of-service data, and to publish reports based on that data.

Resources required: TBD; but low resource requirement

Public Benefit: Timely access to phone company quality of service, complaint record data.

Portal Benefit: Providing information as our charter requires; free application getting government information to the public.

Agency Benefit: Reduced effort to produce and distribute quality service reporting by automation of that function

State Mandate: This service is a priority set by the PUC Commission

Privacy/Security issues to consider: None that we’re aware of at this time.

7. The Fire Marshall’s office has requested that InforME develop an application to permit the filing of sprinkler system plans and collection of permit fees.

Resources required: TBD

Public Benefit: Approximately 700 permits are completed each year

Portal Benefit: enabling eGovernment service; very low volume.

Agency Benefit: Automated collection of permits and fees would assist the Fire Marshall’s office, which has one staff member.

State Mandate: None

Privacy/Security issues to consider: None. No private information being displayed. Login will include license number and a password to be determined.

 8.   The Secretary of State, Bureau of Motor Vehicles has requested the development of an online Driver License and State ID Renewal service.

Resources required: 200 hours of development; 4 months

Public Benefit: citizens with a digital driver’s license or I.D. may renew online with a credit card. Users must be over the age of 23 and not in need of a vision screening.

Portal Benefit: There are approximately 2,000 digital licenses and IDs renewed each week through the BMV, of which approximately 2/3 would be eligible to renew online.

Agency Benefit: reduce counter waits and mail in requests

State Mandate:   none

Privacy/Security issues to consider: The application design has to be such that one cannot input fraudulent information so as to retrieve another’s personal id information. Safe guards will be in place to ensure that personal information is not disclosed to unauthorized parties.


It was noted that the survey project would take many resource hours for a free service.

The PUC service was explained in further detail that it would allow for automatic updates. The project is ranked low resource, is a free project to benefit the general public. Data is currently in electronic format.


Carrie gives a brief highlight of the 2003 InforME Annual Report that was mailed out to the Board in early February.

II. Driver License Renewal/ID Replacement Service Level Agreement

The Board is presented with a Service Level Agreement for revenue share with SOS/BMV for the Driver License Renewal/ ID duplicate. A total of 30,000 lost licenses/ID s were reported last year. The Chair provides the Board with an overview of the online service. Currently an individual must go to one of the 27 branch license offices to renew a driver’s license or ID and obtain duplicates. The fees are as follows: $30 for renewals and $5 for duplicates. The InforMe revenue share is proposed as $1/per transaction. The Secretary of State has worked closely with Public Safety and looked at other states to establish online rules. Even with the age and eye exam restrictions, 2/3 of population is still eligible to use the online service. This service would benefit the citizens with ease and convenience of not having to take the time to visit a Bureau of Motor Vehicle branch office.


Q. What if a user’s record indicates there are restrictions?

A. (InforME) The backend will flag any of the eligibility restrictions a user may have.

Q. Can this service be used for address changes as well?

A. (InforME) Yes, however a separate free service is available for address change only.

Q. Does the online service offer all electronic payments? Is there a way that people approaching age limitations/eye restrictions would still be able to renew online if providing required documentation?

A. The Secretary of State is still in the process of looking at all options in order to allow for more of a broader user group.

A motion is made to approve the revenue share for online driver license renewal.
By:   Jaynie Higgins
Seconded: Gary Nichols

The Board votes unanimously to accept the proposed revenue share.

III.    Weekly Bulk Corporate Updates Service Level Agreement

The Board is presented with a Service Level Agreement for Weekly Bulk Corporate Updates. Chip Gavin, Deputy Secretary of State, provides the Board with an overview of the service. This service would allow current customers of the Month Corporate Data Service to download the data much more frequently. The success of the UCC Bulk Data Weekly service has spurred a request for this feature of the Corporate Bulk Service. Fees are the same as UCC weekly data service.


Q. Are these statutory fees or proposed? What are the algorithms for the fee structure?

A. (InforME) These are value added services. These fees are consistent with our other value added services and broken down by development, maintenance and customer support.

A motion is made to approve the revenue share for Weekly Corporate Bulk Data.
By: Rick Record
Seconded: Marilyn Lutz

The Board votes unanimously to accept the proposed revenue share.

IV   Proposed language changes to the City of Augusta RRS Service Level Agreement

The Board is presented with a Service Level Agreement with the City of Augusta for participation with the Rapid Renewal Service. The SLA includes textual changes that allow the City to opt out of the service.

A motion is made to approve the changes to the City of Augusta Service Level Agreement.
By: Gary Nichols
Seconded: Gerry Dube

The Board votes unanimously.

In the interest of time, the Chair asks if the Board may review Agenda item VI.

VI.   New England Interactive Contract Renewal Board Vote

Dick Hinkley provides the Board with a discussion document for the New England Interactive contract renewal. A series of process steps are outlined for the execution of the contract renewal which is due to expire on July 14th, 2006. There will be some alterations with this year’s contract extension. It is suggested that the Board create a committee to be involved in the contract renewal negotiations and following RFP process. A suggestion is made to put on the Board’s calendar to start reviewing the RFP process.


Q. Why is the contract put out for RPF after contract renewal?

A. The master contract outlines the boundary of the original agreement. This agreement allows the state to re-fabricate the level of service that is offered.

Talking points would be helpful to initiate further discussion.

Dates are suggested as milestones for the steps.

The Board votes unanimously to seek to enter into a two-year contract extension to expire July 14, 2006, which is the final contract extension permitted by the master contract with New England Interactive.

V.    Strategic Plan Overarching Goal

The Strategic Plan Sub Commitee presents the overarching goals of the InforME Board Strategic Plan.

The Sub Committee’s final proposed recommendations are:


The word "profoundly" in the second goal appears strong. Is there a suggested alternative?


Carrie Gott will present a set of strategies to complete these goals in subsequent meetings.

VII. Next Board Meetings:

March 24th at 1P

April   28th at 1P

Meeting is adjourned at: 3:30 p.m.