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Pollution Liability Insurance Agency receives Certificate of Project Excellence Award by OCIO

A small state agency has been recognized by the Office of the Chief Information Officer for its new IT system to help track the loans and grants that it makes to owners and operators of commercial fuel storage tanks.Sue Langen presents Cassandra Garcia with the OCIO Project of Excellence Award

The Pollution Liability Insurance Agency (PLIA) helps underground storage tank owners and operators meet financial responsibility and environmental cleanup requirements. After PLIA received legislative authority in 2016 for a new loan and grant program of up to $2 million per facility, the agency needed a system to manage information and workflows.

Such a system would need to track:

  • Individual loan and grant projects
  • Additional project funding sources
  • Cleanup documentation and technical oversight
  • Customer engagement and agency performance

The system would also need to store documentation for infrastructure and construction projects, be accessible from PLIA’s website and align with the agency’s goals of public transparency while meeting security and access restrictions.

The agency finished the project within the planned scope and schedule, as well as under a tight budget. Prior to its deployment in December, the agency kept track of everything on Excel spreadsheets, according to Laura Parma in the OCIO, who served as oversight consultant.

She said the agency, after extensive research, chose a Platform as a Service (PaaS) solution and selected Salesforce as the platform. The solution and a vendor to help implement the project, eightCloud, was secured through a state master contract.

Parma said the project, under executive sponsorship of PLIA Deputy Director Cassandra Garcia, involved most of the small agency’s staff. “They are small – but mighty,” she added

Garcia was “very instrumental as a leader, as a decision maker and as a subject matter expert,” Parma said.

The OCIO celebrated the success of the project on May 28 by presenting PLIA staff with a Certificate of Project Excellence. They are the first agency to earn this award, which was presented by OCIO Deputy Director Sue Langen. PLIA has also offered to share project lessons learned with other small agencies.

 “We really appreciate the support we received from the OCIO, especially from our OCIO consultant Laura Parma, who was always prepared to share best practices and excellent advice,” Garcia said.