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Council Spends Up Big On Outdated Computers

Wednesday January 31, 2001

The Waipa District Council is spending a small fortune on outdated computer equipment according to Waipa Local Democracy.

Council has estimated that they spend about $500,000 on computer systems and photocopiers each year and 2001 will be the same. Of that about $200,000 will be used to purchase outdated computer technology.

"Council spend around $3000 for the CPU section of the computer stations," Stewart McFarlane stated. "Keyboards, monitors, mouse and other external factors are all purchased as separate units."

"Council staff have indicated that the CPUs are a few updates behind, which they say allows them to purchase the units at a better price; however, a quick phone around has indicated updated CPU sections are available at about half of the price that Council pay their supplier."

According to Council staff, computers are updated every second year and cannibalizing old broken down computers for their parts saves further money.

Mr McFarlane indicates that the average high quality computer system can run for years without breaking down.

"I question any computer purchase when the equipment has to be propped up after one year of operation," he stated. "Council are paying enormous amounts for desktop lemons."

"This thinking in reality shows just how public money is going to waste in Waipa. I recognize the need to update but having to update expensive and shoddy equipment with more expensive and shoddy replacements is clear lunacy."

"Council needs to get with it. There are plenty of computer suppliers that can provide good sound equipment that will last for years at much cheaper prices. Council could replace all their aging systems with high quality machines for a fraction of the price they are currently spending long term."

"It’s a matter of being thrifty with public money," Mr McFarlane concluded. "It’s a matter I am willing to push as a future District Councillor."

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