Report from CITOC

By Jorge Basto
JC/AOC IT Division Director

The Court IT Officer Consortium had almost all 80 members present and the NCSC participated as well. We managed to have an AT&T Security Expert there as well as a VMWare rep who was very enlightening. I was elected for two more years to the Board and named Chair for one more term. This will be my third year and I plan on it being my last. The Process discussions were very timely and I had follow up with North Carolina, Indiana and Missouri asking for more information on what we are doing. The Efiling discussions were also interesting and we combined three states using various models (California, Texas, and Georgia). I have confirmed that “state approaches” to implementing a system will require Judicial Council or Supreme Court mandates at some point. This is something I have been saying for a while but I have a hard time believing it will happen in Georgia any time soon.
The Court Technology Conference was great but it became more about states bragging about what they have been able to roll out locally and I still struggle with getting ideas for un-unified jurisdictions such as ours. I was able to meet up with many of my peers as well as spend time with Georgia attendees. I had lunch (and dinner) with Judge David Emerson twice and was able to spend time with Judge Kelly, Judge Brenda S. Weaver, Judge Robert Turner and Judge Timothy Walmsley. Ben Luke was there as well as reps from Fulton, Cobb, Chatham and Cherokee counties. I know there were more Georgia people but these are just the ones I spent time with while I was there. The Keynote shocked everyone because he started the conference by basically telling us we were “not doing our jobs.” The public expectations for technology are so far ahead of what the courts are providing that it is getting embarrassing. The Mid-Note was a review of business and efficiency apps and the End-Note was a CITOC Rep discussing the week’s events.
Day One: Conference was kicked off by a welcome from the Minnesota Chief Justice, Lorie Gildea and then Mary McQueen, NCSC President, introduced the Keynote, Mark Britton. Main tracks on Tuesday related to IT being an “enabler” for the courts and having judges embrace social media. There was talk about governance but it was very court specific and tough to relate to the “agency” role in my opinion. The final session touch on the perceptions and truths about the Cloud but the focus was very conceptual (for the business audience). I didn’t pick up anything enlightening in this session. A reception was hosted by the vendors to wrap up the day.
Day Two: Tara Thomas kicked off the day with a presentation on productivity apps. Some were more common and useful than others but the main point was that they are available on all platforms, not just mobile devices. The vendors had the rest of the morning with Showcase Sessions to demonstrate their solutions. The afternoon was dedicated to the “future” of court technology with a session on creating a culture of innovation – good stuff but not cheap and it does require sufficient buy-in. I enjoyed the “Where should we be by CTC2017” because it not only dealt with new technologies but it also emphasized policy considerations, strategic planning, and new tools for actually implementing solutions.
Day Three: Using Technology to implement Civil Reform was a session I enjoyed but I had some involvement with it through JTC. The Judicial Tool Maturity Model was presented and it gives a clean map for seeing information and processes in a lifecycle. This helps see what can be automated and what kind of impact it will have on the courts. We spent some more time visiting with vendors and then the conference wrapped up with the Endnote. The OASIS Group hosted NIEM Meetings that afternoon and continued through Friday morning.

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