I. Background on the Millennium BugWhen computer memory was scarce and expensive,
programmers used two digits instead of four to track the year in order to save programming
space and money.
At the century date change, the two digits 00 may be
interpreted by a computer to mean the year 1900 and result in costly and disruptive
computer processing errors. Or computers may recognize the year 00 as a valid date, but
perform incorrect date computations and comparisons.
II. Why Y2K has Become an Important Concern
- Computer systems must be able to accurately process
transactions on and after the January 1, 2000 date change.
- Equipment which relies on embedded computer chips such as
energy management systems, elevators, time clocks, card access systems, security systems,
fire alarm systems, fax machines, mail meters, telephone systems and voice mail systems
needs to function properly after the January 1, 2000 date change.
- Mission-critical systems need to be tested, corrected and
retested so that they will continue to function as required when the year 2000 arrives.
This process is known as certifying systems to be Y2K compliant.
- Judicial needs to be confident that other agencies and
institutions, the States Attorney, Public Defender, Corrections, Motor Vehicles,
Department of Children and Families, Department of Social Services, the Police, banks,
etc. that feed data to Judicial are Y2K compliant.
- State agencies are responsible for protecting the life,
health, safety and welfare of the citizens of Connecticut. Judicial will play an important
part by disposing of civil and criminal actions.
III. Judicial's Response to the Y2K Issue to Date
Judicial Information Systems
- Facilities has certified that all systems containing an
embedded chip in each Courthouse, Judicial building and office will function at the
century date change.
- Facilities has developed a Building Contingency Inspection
and Assessment Checklist to be used on January 1, 2000 to assess building equipment,
utility services, environmental climate control systems, energy management systems,
elevators, fire alarm systems, lighting, clocks, security and access systems and UPS
- Facilities has tested all 13 generators and upgraded those
at the designated central Command Center and backup central Command Center.
- Materials Management has developed a Telecommunications
Systems Inspection and Assessment Checklist to determine if telephone systems, voice mail
systems, fax machines and emergency telephones are operational.
- JIS started its Y2K initiative in December of 1996. 93 systems were reviewed for mission
critical status and 67 were chosen for testing. Currently all 67 are 100% Y2K compliant.
- 23 Legacy Systems were tested on a Y2K compliant platform using 17 potentially
- All systems developed since 1990 have been built Y2K compliant. These include JASMIN,
Bail and Child Protection.
- All older systems such as CRMVS, Civil, Jury and Juvenile have been converted.
- 35 End-User developed Applications were tested by the divisions. JIS tracked the
- 3 Large Miscellaneous Applications managed by people in the field were tested -
OVSs Wang system, the Supreme/Appellate System and Housing Applications.
- 3 Proprietary Applications for COLP were tested including the Electronic Bulletin Board.
- The VAX mainframe and the Network components have been upgraded and made Y2K compliant.
- All 1300 Judicial PCs will be replaced with Y2K compliant PCs.
- It is estimated that 300 400 of the replaced PCs can go back into the field after
certification and reimaging.
- DOIT identified 50 statewide computer systems as mission
critical. Superior Courts CRMVS and Civil System were 2 of the 50.
- Superior Court convened a working group of Superior Court
and JIS personnel to address contingency plans for computer system failure. The plans were
submitted to DOIT in March 1999.
- In April the working group conducted an Affinity exercise to
flush out all relevant issues surrounding the Y2K problem.
- In late May DOIT notified Judicial that their focus had
changed from computer systems to business systems and brought in a consultant to manage
- Superior Court took the lead in Judicial Y2K contingency
planning and convened three groups consisting of key personnel from each of the three
divisions. Business failure scenarios were developed and submitted to DOIT in early July.
- Each Division developed contingency plans from the failure
scenarios and a Judicial Contingency Plan document was submitted to DOIT on September 1st.
- 56% of state agencies have submitted contingency plans and
had them approved. Judicial is one of them.
IV. Contingency Plan Details
- Judicials contingency plan is an outline of
predetermined responses and actions that will lessen confusion and ensure continued
provision of business services in the event of a Y2K crisis. Judicials contingency
plan has been built around failure scenarios that include loss of electricity, loss of
telecommunications, disruption in the Detention Centers and computer system failure. The
Judicial contingency plan is a concrete action plan that spells out chains of command,
responsibilities, resources needed to provide services, call lists and interim task lists
necessary to accomplish the goals of the plan.
Judicial Command Center
- The State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) will be located in the State Armory at 360
Broad St. Hartford and will coordinate response actions by the State of Connecticut to
possible disruptions caused by Y2K.
- Disruptions will be handled in a manner similar to the States response to a
natural disaster such as a severe winter storm.
- The EOC will open at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, December 29, 1999 and remain open 24 hours a
day through the emergency or until 7 p.m. on Monday, January 3, 2000.
- MG (Ret) David Gay will head the States emergency response team.
- The Executive Director of Superior Court Operations, the Deputy Chief Court
Administrator, the Director of External Affairs and the Executive Director of
Administrative Services will be on call to the EOC beginning at 7 a.m. on December 29,
- Judicial will provide twice daily situation reports to the EOC beginning on December 29.
Judicial Call Center
- The Judicial central Command Center will be located at the Waterbury Courthouse, 400
Grand St., Waterbury.
- The Waterbury Courthouse was chosen because the generator in the building will fully
power the entire building.
- The Hon. John J. Ronan, Deputy Chief Court Administrator will head the central Command
- The central Command Center will be staffed by the Executive Directors from Superior
Court, CSSD and Administrative Services, the Director of External Affairs, Legal Counsel,
a representative of the Supreme Court, the Security Manager and Facilities staff and other
personnel chosen by the Executive Directors.
- The purpose of the central Command Center is to act as a liaison between the State
Command Center, other State Agency central Command Centers and the Judicial regional
Command Centers. It will receive reports on field conditions, respond to emergencies,
track and monitor incident responses, be a resource for questions and help, and allocate
resources and staff.
- The central Command Center will open at 5 a.m. on Saturday, January 1, 2000 and remain
in operation until all Y2K issues have been resolved or Monday, January 3, 2000.
- By 10 a.m. on January 1, 2000, the central Command Center will have received reports
from each of the 13 regional Command centers concerning the status of all buildings,
building systems and computer systems in the JDs.
- The Administrative Judge from each of the JDs will be notified about the status of all
buildings and systems in the JD.
- Reported problems will be handled by central Command Center staff or in consultation
with the Administrative Judge. Computer related problems will be forwarded to JIS and from
there to DOIT.
Regional Command Centers
- A Judicial Call Center to handle Y2K-related concerns from the public and staff will
open on Monday, January 3, 2000 at the central Command
- The purpose of the Call Center will be to receive and disseminate pertinent information
and report any unusual conditions noted from callers.
- A regional Command Center will be established in each Judicial District (JD) and will
open at 6 a.m. on January 1, 2000.
- Regional Command Centers will be staffed by the Administrative Judge (AJ) or designee,
the Trial Court Administrator (TCA) (or Chief Clerk where the TCA heads two JDs), the
Maintenance Supervisors, a representative from the Sheriffs Office, and
representatives from CSSD (IAR, Supervision, Detention and Residential) and Superior Court
(Clerks Office and Support Enforcement).
- The purpose of the regional Command Center is to liaison with the central Command Center
and local offices of other state agencies, report on conditions in the JD, be the focal
point for all JD issues, determine the proper site for court proceedings if proceedings
cannot be conducted in existing facilities and allocate resources and staff within the JD.
- Beginning at 6 a.m on Saturday, January 1, 2000 all Judicial buildings, building systems
and computer systems will be checked.
- Two teams will be assigned to each Courthouse, Judicial building and office. One team
headed by the Building or Site Supervisor will test building systems, security systems and
telecommunication systems. The second team consisting of Superior Court and CSSD
representatives will test computer systems.
- Each team will issue status reports on their findings to their respective regional
Command Centers by 10 a.m. This information will be relayed to the central Command Center.
- The central Command Center will in turn notify the Administrative Judge in each JD.
- AJ s will have the authority to close court in their JD using Operation Snowball if
buildings are reported to be uninhabitable.
- Building, security and telecommunication systems will again be checked on Monday,
January 3, 2000 and the information relayed to the regional Command Center.
- External Affairs will staff both the Judicial central Command Center and the State
Emergency Operations Center and will coordinate all information released about the
Judicial Branch, report developments to the central Judicial Command Center and field
questions from the press, other State agencies and Legislators. In addition External
Affairs will be at the planning sessions prior to the Governors twice-daily media
Judicial business functions during building or system failure
- Judicial will contract for Police coverage at the central Command Center, 101 Lafayette
St and each of the 3 Detention Centers. In addition to providing backup coverage in case
of a disturbance, the Police will have radios in the event of a telecommunication failure
and can also assist with medical emergencies.
- State vehicles will be assigned to each Command Center. In case of a telecommunication
failure, the state vehicles will ferry information back and forth between any point in the
- In the event a Courthouse is uninhabitable, the AJ will determine where arraignments
will be conducted.
- Should computer systems fail, Court Operation staff will utilize a manual system to
process cases. Training for court personnel will take place in November.
- CSSD has developed alternate procedures for bail interviews and intensive supervision.
- Detention has a contingency plan for evacuating Bridgeport Detention during power
failure. Bridgeport Detention does not have a generator.