At a document shredding facility on Tuesday, Governor Ned Lamont announced he wants government to jettison cumbersome paperwork required to do work with the state.
Governor Ned Lamont and Department of Administrative Services (DAS) Commissioner Josh Geballe today announced a series of items to reduce bureaucracy, streamline procurement, and ultimately make it easier for businesses to work with the state. Included in the items is a bill currently pending in the legislature that will eliminate thousands of unnecessary forms processed by DAS annually. The announcement was made during a tour of Infoshred, a document shredding facility in East Windsor.
Currently, every business that wants to sell to the state has to fill out at least seven forms in the procurement process. House Bill 7385, developed by DAS, will reduce that to one, thereby eliminating unnecessary forms that businesses need to complete to do business with the state without compromising the state’s standards for fair and ethical contracting. The bill will result in the elimination of over 90,000 forms that are submitted to the state each year. The proposal has gained the support of the Connecticut Business and Industries Association, the state’s leading business advocate.
“With fresh eyes, an aggressive approach, and collaboration, we can modernize state government the way it should be,” Governor Ned Lamont said. “It is too difficult to navigate through our agencies–it slows down our employees and our businesses. Commissioner Geballe has hit the ground running and in just over two months already identified ways to eliminate burdensome red tape. We’ll continue to make doing business easier in Connecticut. State government needs to embrace change and be willing to take responsible risks to move into the future. The status quo is not good enough.”
“As a former CEO of a technology company in Connecticut, I know this is a fantastic state to build a business but that the state can be a better partner in helping Connecticut businesses grow,”Commissioner Geballe said. “Citizens and businesses in this state are our customers, and we can help them by simplifying processes and eliminating wasteful duplication of data collection.”
Other DAS initiatives include:
· Simplify redundant processes. As one example, the state and the federal government have different standards for what qualifies as a small business. As a result, small businesses waste time going through a separate processes to receive their certification in Connecticut. The state seeks to adopt the federal standards and eliminate that Connecticut-specific process altogether.
· Reduce manual processes with a goal of having every transaction online. Goals include providing more tools to transact with the state online rather than via printed form or standing in line, dramatically reducing printed forms that are mailed to residents, allowing residents to opt-out of receiving paper copies, and digitizing records to more efficiently utilize office space.
· Modernize the state’s e-sourcing system. A more modern platform will provide businesses easier access to bid on state and local contracts and help expand the state’s purchasing pool, thereby reducing costs.
· Reducing duplicative functions across agencies. In the next few months the administration will rolls out several initiatives designed to share information, create efficiency and pull teams together across agencies.
· Centralize and consolidate purchasing of enterprise systems and software. As one example, currently every agency is buying their own Microsoft licenses, resulting in higher costs and less frequent access to new capabilities and security upgrades.
Recognizing that many of the best ideas come directly from the people on the frontlines who experience red tape every day, Governor Lamont and Commissioner Geballe are inviting residents and businesses to submit their ideas for reducing bureaucracy in state government. Anyone with a suggestion is encouraged to post their ideas on social media (Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn) using the hashtag #cutredtapeCT, or emailing them to email@example.com. The responses will be monitored by DAS until the end of April. Useful suggestions will be investigated and actioned. Those who submit the best ideas over the next week will be invited to discuss their ideas directly with the governor and key commissioners.
“Infoshred has had a collaborative experience with DAS in developing and improving our service offerings to the state,” Stacey Lombardo, president and founder of Infoshred, said. “The process has allowed for open dialogue to create solutions that are mutually beneficial to the state and Infoshred. The communication we have experienced with DAS has been far superior to the majority of our large profile customers, both public and private. The new initiatives being undertaken by DAS to make the state more business friendly, including House Bill 7385, are welcome enhancements for anyone working the state.”