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Sunday, 23rd November 2014

in Bee Cave TX 78738

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iPad ire

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Last week's City Council meeting led to a request that is proving to be contentious. The Council asked that the 2014-15 budget that starts October include an iPad with a wireless subscription for each council member. The costs total just under $8,000.

 

A City Hall source said " the iPads are for data security and protection as well as providing a paperless agenda system for council- which will save both time and money".

 

Travis Askey was appointed interim City Manager to replace Frank Salvato who leaves soon, and he was also given a $10,000 raise.

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What's wrong with Big Chief tablets? Or does that offend the natives?
VOTES:-4
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What the H E double hockey sticks are you talking about?
VOTES:8
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This needs to be gut checked. That is a lot of money. Aren't most of these part time, volunteer staff? If these were full time people that is one thing but isn't council pt?
VOTES:0
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I think the iPads are a great idea but the data plans are unnecessary. Everyone has wifi these days.
VOTES:13
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The data plan helps shield the city from liability for the illicit content that will be downloaded to these devices from the internet. The cost of managing these devices would be prohibitive if they also had to manage the network used to connect them.
VOTES:-8
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Illicit content?
VOTES:7
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il·lic·it
i(l)ˈlisit/Submit
adjective
forbidden by law, rules, or custom.
VOTES:-5
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Wireless devices are *not* secure.
VOTES:-4
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That's true!
VOTES:-1
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So do we really have a bunch of ignorant people on here or what gives?
VOTES:1
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Apparently so because they still think they should mark down comments that state the truth about wifi. It's not secure folks-no matter how many times you click the thumbs down. The security defense was a bad and false claim to justify this expense.
VOTES:1
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Actually, several cities are starting to use iPads for council members / Senior city staff. When you break down the cost of printing, man hours putting together the packets as well as the cost in having to reprint agendas or other packet items when a mistake is found, the costs add up. In most cases, you are looking at about a two year break even point, where the cost savings will have paid for the devices. Additionally, if you counted the time savings for having to have police officers get off patrol and deliver these packets every week, there is an additional cost savings in man hours. As far as security? The devices have proven to be secure enough by many cities and many law enforcement agencies who have switched to them for all their mobile computing needs, the best part, these devices actually do save money. Do the research, it may change your opinion.
VOTES:9
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Research shows that mobile devices like laptops, tablets, phones, etc., are not secure. Networks they attach to are often public networks (like your favorite coffee shop or cafe). There are many documented cases of security issues like this.
VOTES:-4
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Once again the facts aren't accepted. Gotta love it. Anyone working in IT can tell you that wifi is not secure. We are not that gullible to think this is a good excuse to justify spending our tax dollars. It is not Christmas and this is not your new toys.
VOTES:-1
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they aren't storing nuclear launch codes on them... how secure does little ole' bee cave need to be?
VOTES:4
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HORSEPUCK
VOTES:-7
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Our City Council is responsible for making the decisions for our city and they spend countless hours working for our citizens without pay. If an iPad is deemed to be a good investment, and is proven to be as secure as it can be (remember, paper documents are not secure either), then I say let them acquire them. In the scope of things, $8k for the total purchase is not a factor. Let them do their jobs the way they think best, and if anyone doesn't like their decisions or results of their decisions, there is a future election when you can vote for someone else. As for Travis Askey getting promoted to interim City Manager, I, for one, hope he gets the official title. He has worked for our city for many years, is qualified, is approachable, and is up to speed on all the issues of our community. He is a good man.
VOTES:9
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Yes we can vote better next time however the money will be spent and become standard for the future no matter who sits on that panel. I would like for the citizens to have been afforded a voice with these budget decisions.
VOTES:0
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Recall!
VOTES:-1
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The budget will be approved on Sept 9th. These have been voted to be placed on the budget (and it was on the agenda the last 2 meetings in which you could have voiced concern.). If you want to fight the iPads or anything else on the budget than you can go to the public hearing on the 9th.
VOTES:12
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I will be in business travel. It is unfortunate that we can't trust our officials to do the right thing without having to address common sense issues in person.
VOTES:-4
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$8K is just the entry costs. The productivity gains are a myth, along with the security claims.
VOTES:1
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The council needs to recruit some diversity and the City Manager opening is an opportunity.
VOTES:0
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So let's be clear: the Council has voted not to enlarge the library space or to restore Monday hours because turning away small children from over-capacity story hours works for them if it gets them upgraded technology?
VOTES:-6
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Dogs at the park have a higher priority than the kids at the library.
VOTES:-10
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So true!
VOTES:-7
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I think we found our city slogan.
VOTES:-2
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How does any of this have to do with the library? This all comes down to good business decisions, not feel good decisions that have no real upside strategically or financially. Stop creating a straw man argument that is based on a complete fallacy.
VOTES:6
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"good business decisions" ? what a joke.

A tablet from any other manufacturer would be less than half the cost and twice the functionality for the stated purpose (larger screen, faster processor, and more memory).

This is just council members expressing their misinformed elitist attitude at the expense of the community.
VOTES:-9
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I find this very curious that average citizens would come to this page and click down any comments that are against this and at this price. This does not make any sense. Bee Cave is full of smart people who wouldn't be marking down comments against unwarranted spending.
VOTES:-10
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It is obvious who us commenting in support
VOTES:0
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You have obviously never used an iPad and an Android tabled side by side. There is a H U G E difference. Android is a mess. The Apple iOS is far easier to use and you are ensured compatibility with one hardware and software platform.
VOTES:0
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It totally relates to the library in this context. City decides not to spend money on Library hours and to spend money on iPads. Are you saying public libraries have no benefit? Let's close down public schools too, that would have really good financial upside for the tax payers. Seems like a lot of people around here would benefit from a few hours in the library
VOTES:-5
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Mr. England continues to harass the city council with his selective choice of coverage. Sour grapes?
VOTES:-5
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This is the only place we find out the real deals that otherwise would get snuck in.
VOTES:0
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You can find out all you want by going to the meetings or reading the minutes. It's all transparent and open to the public.
VOTES:1
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Not quite. There are private chats going on between some council members that are not included in the minutes.
VOTES:3
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I have heard the same rumors and that someone used a wifi sniffer to capture the illegal chats during a council meeting.
VOTES:-2
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Was this the thing about someone posting on FAcebook during meetings? Or something else?
VOTES:-3
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Wish those would surface!
VOTES:-1
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How is he harassing? This is not harassment-it IS newsworthy.
VOTES:-1
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As an IT guy, I can see the benefits of not having to print out a bunch of copies of the agenda and all supporting documents for each meeting. Putting the agenda "in the cloud" also gives you better control over document revisions across all devices. There are a lot of man hours put into this process every month.

To those of you screaming about security. Definitely, wi-fi is not secure. Neither is a mobile connection. But how secure is 100 pages of documents thrown in a briefcase? Anyone can pick that out of trash, where it will most likely end up hours after the meeting. With the iPad's "kill switch", you can easily wipe all secure data from the system if it is lost or stolen. (And that is probably why they are going with the mobile data plans).

Finally, it's Bee Cave city council for goodness sake. Do they have super secret spy meetings? Do they have codes to nuclear missiles? I sure hope not. Cost of Security vs Benefits, people.
VOTES:6
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I think the concerns are the backroom dealings out of the public's view. There is a reason these documents are printed on paper, and published in a newspaper. Agenda's can't be edited within 72 hours of the meetings. Council members can't have electronic meetings without the public present.
VOTES:4
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How are you going to make sure that the printed version of the documents made available to all the attendees is the exact same version on the iPads?
VOTES:4
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Great! a "kill switch" so that their legal adviser can delete all the evidence before the public information request can be completed. Sounds like a lesson learned from Lois Lerner.
VOTES:4
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I find it amazing that there are 28 comments on this thread and only 5 on the thread about the little boy that is hanging on after being struck by lightning. I think I read on one of the council members updates that they gave the PT library staff a raise that added about $30,000 to the library budget for just that one thing. I also read that they would talk about the Monday hours at the mid year budget and were thinking about adding them for summer.
VOTES:-7
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Me thinks someone really wants this subject to change or just hush up. Of course we are praying for Alex. That was an obvious plea to simmer down on this topic but people all across this community are obviously stirred up when our tax dollars are misused
VOTES:1
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Yes and they were having problems finding staff for the monday hours.
VOTES:2
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Personally I think the fact that council denied a parks, trails and open space commission is bigger news.
VOTES:4
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I disagree. Enough with all these special commissions!
VOTES:-3
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This discussion might be more productive, certainly more civil if people would post under their names.
VOTES:1
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How so?

I am finding that many of the issues raised are worth considering, regardless of who has posted them.
VOTES:8
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Personally, although I read most of the comments, I do treat those signed as a bit more credible. Anyway, the city council doesn't even get paid. A huge amount of time is spent online, reading email, proposal, sending out status, keeping in touch with the city. Budgeting 8K for tablets is peanuts. Although I'd rather they have voted for the trails, etc., the tablets are a fraction of the cost of the trails. I suspect there are a few folks, generally disgruntled, that will resist and mock anything the council wants to do.
Rich
VOTES:-1
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School time their children need Ipads.
VOTES:-2
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The question about security for these devices was definitively answered over the weekend.
VOTES:-2
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Really? How can you give that a thumbs down? Even the person above who thinks they can get their toys pointed out that the security issue was null and void.
VOTES:-2
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I give two thumbs down because it tells me nothing. I have no idea how question was "definitively" answered. I don't know if you are say they are or are not secure. Am I supposed to be mind reader? Igor
VOTES:1
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No but you can turn on the news and see the headlines were all about leaked information so NO, nothing is secure, hence the wrong justification for this expense.
VOTES:1
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duh ... connect the dots ... celebrity nudes leaked from apple servers.
VOTES:1

 

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