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Pennsylvania County Looks to Update Its Assessment Software

Compatibility issues are prompting officials in Crawford County to look at their options.

by Keith Gushard, The Meadville Tribune / June 7, 2018
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(TNS) — The Crawford County, Pa., Assessment Office wants to upgrade its computer software in 2019 since technical support is ending in 18 months for a major computer operating system used by the office.

Chief Assessor Joseph Galbo III told county commissioners Wednesday that technical support for Microsoft Windows 7, a computer operating system, ends in January 2020. That's key because its current software from Vision Government Solutions to prepare tax rolls runs on a Windows 7 operating system, Galbo told commissioners.

The current version of Vision Government Solutions software plugs into the Windows 7 program that generates tax roll reports for various municipalities and school districts, Galbo said. The current version of Vision Government Solutions won't work with Microsoft Windows 8.

One option is purchasing new Vision software that will work with Windows 8 and upgrade to the Windows 8 operating system for an estimated $50,000, Galbo said. Another option is buying an interim software package from Vision at about the same cost, but "then you spend another $50,000 a few years down the road," Galbo said. "It makes more sense to go to (Windows) 8 now."

Moving up to Windows 8 will require an upgrade of other software, such as Geographic Information Systems, or GIS, that the Assessment Office uses, Galbo said.

Galbo said he's planning for it in his office's part of the county's 2019 budget but wanted to get commissioners thinking about it now.

"We'll need to do something prior to January 2020," Galbo said. Whichever upgrade the commissioners choose, Galbo said he'd like to make the change in early February 2019 once tax assessment rolls for 2019 are completed.

Commissioners agreed to look at the changes but also want a list of what other software and related items would be affected as well as what those fees would be.

©2018 The Meadville Tribune (Meadville, Pa.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.