/Wright No duplication in contract work

Wright No duplication in contract work

Carey Wright, the state education superintendent, said that all IT work done by two companies connected to her former Maryland coworkers was necessary and that there was no duplication. Wright was criticized for the awarding hundreds of thousands to Blue Sky Innovative Solutions, LLC, and DataOne IT Solutions. These companies were responsible for a new data system, and the reorganization and restructuring of the IT department in the last three years. Wright appointed John Q. Porter as the deputy state superintendent in 2015. He was a past president of Blue Sky, and a former colleague from Maryland. Blue Sky had been contracted by the Mississippi Department of Education for over $200,000 in 2014. One contract was modified from $29.050 to $69.450. This added “continued oversight” and “development, implementation, and review of a plan of actions” to the scope of work. Wright stated that there is no way we could have done some of the data-related things we do now without Dr. Porter’s help. Jackson Jambalaya, a blog, first reported Tuesday on the contracts. It raised questions about Porter’s salary as well as the contracts of the companies with the department. Elton Stokes of DataOne did not return calls to Porter or Elton Stokes. The state auditor’s spokeswoman said that it had been informed of media reports on the contracts, but couldn’t confirm or deny ongoing audits and investigations. Wright stated that the state auditor’s is currently conducting a compliance audit of the department, which Wright confirmed was routine. Stacey Pickering, the auditor’s office, wrote Wright a letter in May. The letter stated that Porter’s salary could be a violation of the law that says certain employees’ salaries cannot exceed 150 per cent of the Governor’s. According to The Clarion-Ledger, after receiving the letter, the board decided to reduce Porter’s salary to $195,000 from $183,000 at its May meeting. Elton Stokes was also contracted by the Education Department. He is currently listed as an administrator for Montgomery County School District, Maryland. Wright previously worked there as an associate superintendent. According to minutes of January’s meeting, the board unanimously voted to hire Stokes for a consulting job at a cost not exceeding $93,009.60. The board also approved one of Porter’s IT contracts to be awarded that day. Wright stated that Porter’s company is focused on IT infrastructure and Stokes is a “data-warehouse guru”. Wright also said that the board voted to award one of Porter’s contracts for the same IT work. “… Quality of data is a key part of integrity. Make a regular donation to support this work today, as we celebrate our Spring Member Drive. Our reporters give a human face to policy’s impact on everyday Mississippians by listening more closely and understanding their communities. To ensure that our work is aligned with the priorities and needs of all Mississippians, we are listening to you. Click the button below to let us know what you think.