Florida’s Statewide Email System Is in Limbo

Confusion over savings led lawmakers to take the $70 million deal with Xerox out of this year’s budget.

by / July 26, 2012
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Xerox Corp. is trying to salvage its plan with Florida to develop a statewide email system after investing about $30 million in upfront costs. The $70 million deal was taken out of this year’s budget by lawmakers earlier this year after confusion about how much the state would save and how long the project would take to be completed, reported news-press.com.

"I'm very frustrated with the way this whole process has been managed," Rep. Denise Grimsley said. "We kept getting different numbers from [the agency], and we would try to back into the numbers and weren't able to do so. Where are they getting these numbers from?"

Legislators passed a measure a few years ago that required Florida to move to a unified email platform by 2013 that would replace the state's existing 30 email systems. But now it’s unclear whether Xerox will continue building the new Microsoft Exchange 2010 email system, which has already been adopted by 5,000 Florida state workers in eight agencies.

"We've been working closely with the state and have added additional value to the contract," Xerox spokesman Ken Ericson said. "We're very focused on a positive resolution, we don't expect this project to die. The state has its law in place to implement a single system by 2013. We want to be there to help them."