California Governor Cuts Employee Cell Phones - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Mobile
News
1/12/2011
01:32 PM
50%
50%
RELATED EVENTS
Building Security for the IoT
Nov 09, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the most effective approaches to securing Internet-enabled system ...Read More>>

California Governor Cuts Employee Cell Phones

The cost-cutting measure requiring state workers to return 48,000 state-paid devices is expected to save $20 million a year




How To Manage Mobile Devices
(click for larger image and for full slideshow)
California's governor has ordered the return of half of government-paid cell phones currently in use by state employees.

The cost-cutting measure -- the first executive order issued by Gov. Jerry Brown since he took office Jan. 3 for his third non-consecutive term -- is expected to save the state $20 million a year. That figure is based on the state finance office's estimation of $36 a month for each device.

Brown already served two terms as governor of the state from 1975 to 1983 before being elected again last November.

The order directs state agency and department leaders to collect and turn in 48,000 government-paid cell phones by June 1. The state currently pays for 96,000 phones for state employees.

"It is difficult for me to believe that 40% of all state employees must be equipped with taxpayer-funded cell phones," Brown said in a statement.

He acquiesced that some state employees -- "including department and agency executives who are required to be in touch 24 hours a day and seven days a week," may need the state to pay for their phones. However, he called the current number of phones paid for by the state "astounding."

Brown said that it might not be possible to reach the June 1 target, as he aims to end wireless contracts in a way that will not require the state to pay early termination fees. However, his hope is that the state will reach the 48,000 mark even earlier than June, he said in a statement.

Brown is also asking every department and agency to review and justify all cell phone usage, and "to procure the most appropriate and cost-effective phone, data, Internet, and other usage plans for those cell phones and smartphones for which a significant business need does exist," according to the order.

California's budget is in dire straits, with the state facing a $24.5 billion shortfall over the next year and a half. The cell phone order is part of a budget Brown unveiled this week that includes other drastic cost-cutting measures.

Government-issued cell phones are commonplace for both federal and state governments, but it's sometimes been difficult for agencies to track if employees are always using the phones for work purposes. California in the past has discovered abuses in use of state-paid phones, with employees rampantly using the devices for personal business.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
2017 State of IT Report
In today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll