National Library CSC poles apart on failed NDIS project

CSC Australia and the National Library seem to be poles apart on finding a way to disengage from the contract for the failed NDIS (national document and information service) project. National Librarian Darryn Jenkins says only that negotiations are continuing with CSC. But CSC government services director Peter Stibbings says the parties can't agree on who owns what and who owes what to whom. He says, however, the negotiations aren't acrimonious.

CSC Australia and the National Library seem to be poles apart on finding a way to disengage from the contract for the failed NDIS (national document and information service) project.

National Librarian Darryn Jenkins says only that negotiations are continuing with CSC. But CSC government services director Peter Stibbings says the parties can’t agree on who owns what and who owes what to whom. He says, however, the negotiations aren’t acrimonious.

CSC was the prime vendor for NDIS, whose budget had blown out to around $8.5 million, from $6.9 million, and would have cost at least $10 million more if the project had continued. The plug was pulled last December and the parties have been in negotiation since February.

Jenkins says the library has since identified a range of options to replace the core NZBN system and is now refining them and looking at costs. The other systems to be replaced are the inter-library loan system, indexing and online access capacity.

He expects to report back to Finance Minister Bill Birch and the minister in charge of the library, Wyatt Creech, by the end of September. The ministers are keeping a close eye on expenditure. There has been no budget defined for a replacement system, which will have to be met within the current budget.

Jenkins says the library has not sought specific vendors but has spoken to several on what he terms a trade-fair basis.

The library, meanwhile, has a new IS general manager. He’s Graham Coe, formerly of Te Puni Kokiri. He replaces Richard Donaldson, whose contract has ended.

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