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New IT Specialist Hired at Emergency Meeting

By John T. Ryan

Peru – The Peru Town Board conducted an emergency meeting on Wednesday, March 29th. According to the minutes the purpose was to hire and introduce the town’s new IT provider, Patrick Garsow, and to learn his top three priorities. Garsow told the board that over the next 30 days he would implement computer system security, get back-up and recovery systems working and migrate data to a new server.

The town purchased a new server in April 2015 at a cost of $8,150. Garsow said correcting the issues with that server would cost more than purchasing a new one. He took the old server in trade.  The new, faster server will cost the town about $6,000. The total cost including data migration and software installation will not exceed $10,000.

At its April 10, 2017 meeting Supervisor Peter Glushko explained that when the board sensed problems with its computer systems it called upon Twinstate Technologies and Garsow to evaluate the system. Both Twinstate and Garsow recommended immediate action. After discussion, the board decided to hire Garsow based on his cost, experience and availability.

Garsow said the new server is in operation, all systems have been properly backed up and that several infections were discovered and resolved. He reported problems with the town’s KVS accounting software saying, “It’s non-functional at this time.” He said KVS tech support has been slow to respond, unable to resolve issues, and not available 24 hours daily.  (Editor’s Note – the KVS issue was resolved the following day and is now in operation)

Garsow recommended updating the operating systems on all the town’s 15 computers and establishing less expensive three-year contracts for anti-virus protection and cloud backup systems. Given KVS’s poor support, he would like to eventually seek out another accounting software provider. He also pointed out that the town hall’s computers and its servers are on the same wireless network. Garsow said that is not a good practice.

Supervisor Peter Glushko recommended that Garsow’s work be audited on an annual or bi-annual basis by an outside party. He mentioned Twinstate Technology. Garsow said he thought Glushko had made a good suggestion saying, “I definitely can’t audit my own work.”

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