Funding Request for Troubled California Computer System Rejected

Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, rejected a plea from the California Department of Consumer Affairs for more money to help shore up a troubled IT project.

by / March 2, 2015

The California Department of Consumer Affairs’ troubled BreEZe system is in danger of failing, and it isn’t getting a bailout from the Senate budget committee.

In a letter obtained by the Sacramento Bee, Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco, who leads the Senate budget committee, told Finance Director Michael Cohen that his request for more money on behalf of the department’s ailing IT project has been denied for the time being. Leno wants to see more information on BreEZe and why the system needs an additional $17.5 million before approving the influx of cash.

BreEZe was supposed to help automate and streamline licensing and enforcement workflow for the Department of Consumer Affairs’ bureaus and offices. It has been implemented by just a portion of the department since its initial launch in 2013. A recent state audit uncovered that the project has more than 1,000 defects, however. As a result, the estimated cost of the system has jumped from an initial $28 million to $96 million.

By not immediately approving the $17.5 million in additional funds, California would be locked into an $86 million contract with vendor Accenture PLC, the Bee reported. The department has already spent $37 million on the system.