The FBI will miss its deadline of this coming Saturday to inaugurate an overhaul of its archaic computer system. The Chicago Tribune says that the new arrangement finally will allow more than 11,000 agents to access case files easily and “connect the dots” from their desks.
But the system is months behind schedule and more than $200 million over budget, and its backbone component will not be ready this week, FBI officials acknowledge. One official said it might not be launched until the middle of 2004. Another said added cost overruns may exceed $30 million. That would bring the price tag for the system, known as Trilogy, to $626 million. The original cost was $380 million. “No one is more disappointed than [FBI Director Robert Mueller] about missing this date,” said one senior FBI official. “It was a huge disappointment.”
The General Services Administration, the federal government’s procurement arm, announced the newest delays last month but didn’t mention the latest cost overruns or say when the system would come online. A GSA statement said a private contractor, Computer Sciences Corp., “failed to meet a critical delivery date.”