The Scapegoat

The media has found someone to blame for the Minnesota motor vehicle licensing computer system (MNLARS), just in the nick of time:

An outside investigator hired by the state’s information technology department found the official in charge of Minnesota’s troubled vehicle licensing system knew there were numerous defects prior to its launch last summer but failed to address them.

The report says Paul Meekin, who was officially fired from his job at Minnesota IT Services last month, fell short of expectations related to pre-launch testing and several key management responsibilities, including communication and staffing.

The $93 million Minnesota Licensing and Registration System (MNLARS) was rolled out on July 24, 2017, replacing a 30-year-old system. There were immediate problems, including delays in the processing of license and title transactions.

Just in time for the elections!

It’s complete baked wind, of course.  While Meekin may or may not have been a terrible program manager, it’s common knowledge among Twin Cities IT people that Minnesota’s government IT bureaucracy is systemically sclerotic, and largely incapable of delivering software effectively and efficiently.

But it’s government work.  As long as there’s a politically-acceptable scapegoat, nothing will change.

2 thoughts on “The Scapegoat

  1. In my experience, whenever a single person is blamed for everything, even outside of government, it’s usually baked wind as well. In this case, he was the world’s worst program manager, and nobody warned of the problems? Sorry, we just got someone else to blame, didn’t we?

  2. “An outside investigator hired by the state’s information technology department….” An IT department A) has the power (and money) to hire an “outside investigator” and B) An IT department feels the NEED to hire an “outside investigator”. No, no government waste here, move along, nothing to see….

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