Annual Report

Information Systems Department 

The Information Systems Department is responsible for the computer hardware and software used by the City.  The IS Department assists other City Departments in evaluating, selecting and implementing computer systems.  It also sets the standards for City computer systems.  The Information Systems Director is appointed by the Mayor and reports directly to the Finance Director.  The staff of the Information Systems Department consists of five (5) employees.  The staff is made up by the Director, one System Analyst II, two Computer Administrator II, and one part-time Computer Administrator I.  The Information Systems Department has four primary areas of responsibility. These are Computer and Network Support, Application Software Support and End User Support, Website and Internet and Geographic Information Systems. 

COMPUTER AND NETWORK SUPPORT 

The IS Department maintains the following hardware: 

 

FY 2015

FY 2016

FY 2017

Windows 2008/2012/2016 Servers

28

25

30

Physical Servers

13

13

10

Virtual Servers

22

17

26

Personal Computers

340

340

403

Tablets & Smartphones

24

62

89

 

We also support 48 network switches (34 logical switches), 9 firewalls and 3 network routers.

 

We also replaced 94 computers this year to keep our computer fleet current and reliable.

 

We did a major data center infrastructure upgrade.  We replaced the 5-year-old host servers for our server virtualization with new current servers.  With modern servers, we reduced our host servers from 3 to 2.  At the same time, we replaced our two aging Storage Area Network (SAN) devices that provided 21 TB of capacity with a new Dell/EMC Unity SAN.  The new SAN utilizes solid state disk drives making it approximately 10 times faster than our old unit and increased our capacity to 30 TB.  These upgrades brought some needed performance improvements and allowed us to virtualize our largest servers.  This new equipment is also more energy efficient and reduces the heat output in our data center.

 

We also replaced our data backup solution with a newer product.  As part of this solution, we are now placing an encrypted copy of our backup data into the cloud for offsite recovery in case of a disaster.  Previously we were storing the offsite data in another building on the City campus.

 

A major project for us this year was incorporating the Library Staff Network of 50 computers, one server and their users into the city network.  This included the Civic Center Library and both branch libraries.  This allows the City Information Systems Department to provide the maintenance and support on these computers and increased the security on them.

 

We did a significant network upgrade at Greenmead Historic Village this year.  We installed network cabling in conduit between the Blue House, the Meeting House, and Hinbern.  We also replaced the Firewall and added additional Wi-Fi capabilities at these three buildings.

 

We worked with the 16th District Court to connect their security cameras to the City Avigilon system.  Their old video recorders had become unreliable and was also difficult to access.  The new system can be accessed by Livonia Police if required.

 

We also installed a new router provided by the State of Michigan Courts to provide secure connections between the 16th District Court and the State of Michigan Courts.  This new connection increased the speeds significantly and decreased the costs incurred by the Michigan Courts.

 

The IS Department provided support on work order requests:

 

 

FYI 2015

FYI 2016

FYI 2017

Opened

1,899

1,570

1,392

Closed

1,902

1,571

1,393

 

 

APPLICATION SOFTWARE SUPPORT

 

Working with the Livonia Police Department and Emergency Preparedness, we acquired, installed and implemented the Lynx Employee Notification System.  This system allows authorized personnel to broadcast a message to the City computers warning of things like weather alerts to potentially things like an active shooter.  This system allows us to quickly distribute information to every computer by either department, building or across the city.  Currently the system is operational but we hope to do more customization for some of the departments to support their operations.

 

To better defend the City computer networks and data, we began an aggressive campaign on Cyber Security Awareness.  All city employees (other than Puclic Safety) who have access to computers were offered short courses in Cyber Security.  Response from the employees has been very good and we have heard multiple reports that the training has helped them avoid problems.  We also conducted some test phishing campaigns to measure our readiness.  The initial testing came back with a 23.5% click rate, after the training was offered we saw that rate drop to range of 3.9% to 5.5%%.  A significant reduction in our risk.

This year we installed two digital signs in the lobby of City Hall.  These signs work with a cloud based solution and allow the Marketing and Communications Manager in the Mayor’s office to promote the city and some of its activities.

 

 

WEBSITE AND INTERNET

 

The Information Systems Department also manages the City Website (http://www.ci.livonia.mi.us/http://www.cityoflivonia.net)), which continues to find new uses and grow in usage.

We updated the City website with the following items:

·       We developed two new blogs on our website to improve communications.  They were LTown Business Insider (Economic Development) and Around Livonia (Marketing/Communications).

·       We developed and implemented a new approval process for calendar items and announcements on the website. These items are now reviewed prior to publication to make sure that we are providing quality products.

·       We now allow pictures to be submitted for requests to add events to our community calendar.

·       The Information Systems, Parks and Recreation and Arts Commission web pages were redesigned.  Much of this redesign was done to reduce the number of pages by combining like things, thus making the pages easier to use.

·       We did some redesign on the home page of the City website to make is easier for mobile device use.

·       We added five additional simple website (URL) addresses to provide easy access to information.  The new sites are www.greenmead.us, www.livoniaparks.org, www.livoniaarts.org, www.livonia4vets.us, and www.livoniawater.org.

·       Developed an online process to support registrations for the Life Remodeled project.

Other web activities:

·       Our City Facebook page grew from 4,511 likes to 6,707.  Our City Twitter account has 2,418 followers. 

 

Website statistics include:

 

FY 2015

FY 2016

FY 2017

Number of Page Views

 

2,527,699

2,136,751

1,827,075

 

Computer vs Mobile Usage of website

FY 2015

FYI 2016

FYI 2017

Desktop Computer Access

53.53%

48.50%

44.33%

Mobile Access

46.47%

51.50%

55.67%

Smartphone Access

36.79%

43.25%

47.69%

Tablet Access

9.68%

8.25%

7.98%

 

The Department also provides e-mail and Internet access to City Employees. 

 

FY 2015

FY 2016

FY 2017

Number of E-mail accounts

261

295

296


GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEMS

The Information Systems Department also manages, operates and maintains a Geographic Information System (GIS) to help manage its maps, apps and spatially referenced data. 

2017 GIS Accomplishments 

Online Map Services –We have maintained and updated the all the maps and apps for General City Map, Park Finder, Transit System Pickup Locations, Trash Pickup Day, Zoning Map and Voter Polling Place Map.  These maps are compatible with mobile devices (smartphone and tablets).  We also created the Leaf Pickup 2017 Map application to inform and help the residents during the leaf pickup program.  The map allowed DPW to mark quarter section segments as not completed, pending cycle 1, completed cycle 1, pending cycle 2 and completed cycle 2.  The previous map was viewed 2,703 times during the leaf pickup season 2016. For the winter season, The Snow Emergency App is ready for use by our residents and DPW. The Snow Emergency App will allow DPW to mark quarter section segments as Not Completed/No Parking in Roadway or Completed/Parking Restrictions Lifted. Also, we have created a completely new app for internal use, Livonia Damage Survey GeoForm App, which will help Livonia Police Department to capture the damage estimated and to report to State and FEMA. 

A new WebApp was developed for Livonia Public Schools, to help the residents to easily search and find the schools in their area based on their location. 

Database Maintenance - We have continued our weekly maintenance schedule with the GIS during 2017.  Our GIS database is under SDE configuration control.  Editing of our various data layers is done by GIS users within the City.  The established procedure calls for all editing to be done to a "personal" version of the GIS database.  These edits are then pushed up to a DRAFT version of the database where they are inspected and verified.  Once the DRAFT version has been verified edits are then pushed up to the DEFAULT version of the database for general use.  This procedure has worked very well and insures that the GIS is continuously updated in a systematic fashion. 

Starting with 2017 the Cityworks maps will be updated on a weekly basis. This will help DPW and the field workers to have the latest information available on their mobile devices.  This year we rolled out tablets and smart phones to DPW workers to use in the field. 

Mapping Support - During 2017 the GIS has continued to supported mapping activities for numerous City departments, including the Assessing department (generated 144 tax assessing maps plus various other maps), measured the parcel "frontage" for all commercial parcels in the City, generated numerous maps for the Housing Department depicting City-owned homes along with Silver Village, Mac Towers, and Newburgh Village, Parks and Recreation, Police and Fire Department. In addition, we continually maintain our set of quarter section tax maps (144), address maps (144), zoning maps (144), land use maps (144) and various City maps (city street maps, subdivisions, voter precincts, etc.). A completely new set of maps has been produced for Livonia Fire Department. 

User Support – In the spring of 2017 we upgraded our GIS system to the most recent version - ArcGIS 10.5 (Basic, Standard and Advance) licenses. This includes the desktop and server’s licenses. 

Also, this year we replaced our GeoConnector software (no longer supported at ArcGIS 10.5 or above) with FME (Feature Manipulation Engine) software. FME is a platform makes simple the connections of hundreds of systems, transform data in unlimited ways, and automate workflows. 

Awards

This year City of Livonia was nominated and earned the IMAGIN's GIS for Everyone Award 2017. The IMAGIN GIS for Everyone Award is presented to an organization that seeks to make GIS data or analysis accessible to other organizations and/or to the public and/or to GIS organizations that strive to disseminate, and share data make spatial data available to everyone.