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County OCIS Commissioner Tim Mahler to Retire

Published: 1/11/2016

For More Information Contact:

Colleen Pillus

Poughkeepsie…Dutchess County Executive Marcus J. Molinaro has announced the upcoming retirement of Dutchess County Office for Central and Information Services (OCIS) Commissioner Timothy Mahler.    Mr. Mahler has served Dutchess County for over 37 years, including the last 13 years as OCIS Commissioner. 

Tim MahlerCounty Executive Molinaro said, “Dutchess County is recognized across New York State and the nation for its technological innovation and applications, and that is thanks to the work of Tim Mahler.    Over nearly four decades, Tim has guided OCIS through tremendous advancements in computer and information technology and has ensured Dutchess County is always providing the best service and innovation possible for our residents.   We are grateful for his service and wish him the very best as he ends his county career.”

Mr. Mahler began his career with Dutchess County Government in 1979 as a Computer Programmer.   He advanced to Project Leader, overseeing Public Safety/Criminal Justice applications development, and was later promoted to Systems Manager in 1988 where he provided oversight for applications development as well as OCIS business administration. In 2003, he was appointed OCIS Commissioner by former County Executive William R. Steinhaus.

As OCIS Commissioner, Mr. Mahler has been responsible for setting the direction and overseeing all County computer services. This includes automation for County departments, Information Technology (IT) shared services for local municipalities and public facing web services such as the County’s award winning website and all its 24/7 applications including ParcelAccess and the County Clerk Document Search.    Commissioner Mahler has led OCIS through significant technological system changes and advancements, including the major decision to convert from a mainframe-centric to an advanced server computer environment in the mid-2000s.  This intensive undertaking involved the OCIS team successfully re-hosting a portfolio of more than 60 applications to windows and web-based platforms and it set the stage for many County technology advances and services to the public. 

In 2013, Commissioner Mahler’s responsibilities expanded beyond IT Computer Services, with the merger of the Office of Computer Information Services and the Department of Central Services, as part of County Executive Molinaro’s efforts to transform county government to be smaller, smarter and more effective.   The Division of Central Services is responsible for the County’s central purchasing, contract administration, telecommunications, duplicating and printing, inventory control, central billing, office supplies, supply delivery and mail services.

Under Commissioner Mahler’s leadership, the OCIS team has undertaken numerous initiatives and has a wide range of accomplishments, including several on a national scale.

  • Dutchess County Government has ranked in the nation’s top 10 since 2004 in the Digital Counties Survey for its information and technology use.   The annual award is given by the Center for Digital Government and the National Association of Counties (NACo).  Dutchess County is only one of two counties in the nation to have consistently ranked in the top 10 for each of the past 12 years. Moreover, Dutchess was ranked 1st in 2012 and has been ranked 2nd for the past three years.
  • The County’s website  was recognized as one of the 10 best County government websites in the nation with “Best of the Web” award in 2009 from the Center for Digital County  for the broad array of 24/7 on-line services.
  • The County’s Enterprise Content Management (ECM) initiative was launched in 2013 to transform Dutchess from paper based documents to one of the few county governments with a true digital document management environment.  The ECM includes a public portal for on-line access to documents including the legislative resolution search function.
  • OCIS has partnered with the County’s public safety agencies to implement one of the most sophisticated and integrated Criminal Justice Computer Systems in the nation, a major component for many of the County’s advancements and improvements in the Criminal Justice System initiatives.
  • Launched the successful IT Shared Services Plan with OCIS now offering municipalities a range of IT services including: website development, PC/server tech services, network services, software development and IT assessments.  Projects have included new websites for the City of Beacon, LaGrange and the Arlington Fire District, among others.
  • Implementation of the County’s state-of–the-art fiber optic-based network, a high-speed network that is the conduit to OCIS’s wide range of services to County departments, municipalities and the public.
  • Implementation of the Unified Communications System (UCS), including Internet Provider (IP)-Phone, providing more than $2 million in savings for taxpayers.
  • Award-winning Geographic Information Systems (GIS) that saves the County, municipalities and local businesses millions of dollars annually.  GIS includes the popular ParcelAccess application developed by the late Phil Thibault, OCIS GIS Coordinator. 

Commissioner Mahler’s service in Dutchess County Government has extended well beyond OCIS and he has been involved in many countywide policy decisions and initiatives including:

  • Co-managed the County-wide Government Efficiency Plan (GEP), with the Budget Director, ensuring property tax rebates for County residents in 2016 as part of the New York State Property Tax Freeze Credit program. This effort involved a partnership with 27 local municipalities to submit a countywide GEP identifying nearly $27 million in annual savings.
  • Coordinated the successful Shared Services Summits in 2014 and 2015 with Chris Barclay, OCIS Director of Central Services.  The events were attended by hundreds of local, county and state officials who brainstormed potential shared services or consolidation opportunities to reduce the cost of government.
  • Member of the County’s Fiscal Accountability and Strategy Team
  • Key member of County’s 911 Implementation Team; including co-authoring the County-wide Property Re-Addressing RFP with John Murphy, former Emergency Response Coordinator.
  • Member of the 911 Oversight Board

Mahler is also a member of New York State Local Government IT Director’s Association (NYSLGITDA) and is well respected throughout the state for Dutchess County OCIS’ innovation and advanced IT services.

Commissioner Mahler is quick to note that it is the tremendous team at OCIS that has made all of these accomplishments possible - in particular, Deputy Commissioner Grant Hait, who oversees all network and infrastructure projects.   This has allowed Mahler to focus on the application service areas, business end of the OCIS operation and external projects such as County Shared Services.

Mahler extended his appreciation to Mr. Hait saying, “My special thanks to OCIS Deputy Commissioner Grant Hait, who will also be retiring in the coming months after 38 years of service. His dedication and contributions to OCIS and the County are immeasurable. Grant and I have partnered on countless projects over the past four decades. He’s been a great collaborator and best friend.”

“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to serve as the OCIS Commissioner for the past 13 years, and having such a long County career being able to do what I love to do while providing public service.  OCIS work would not be possible without the great support of County Executive Molinaro, Deputy County Executive William O’Neil and the County Legislature. County leaders, including Executive Molinaro and former Executive William Steinhaus, have always recognized the importance of IT Services and have championed OCIS initiatives. Most importantly, I’ve been blessed with having dedicated and innovative staff across the OCIS Central and Computer Services divisions.   I know they will continue their great work and I look forward to all that comes next,” said Mahler.

Mr. Mahler, who resides in the Town of Pleasant Valley with his wife, Val Sommerville, plans to enjoy traveling with his wife, time with family and friends and pursuing his many interests, including architectural woodworking, landscaping and cycling.  Mr. Mahler will officially retire at the end of May, 2016.