From Dave Aronberg: Who knew? When did they know? And what does it mean for Florida’s taxpayers?
Last week I asked these and many other questions after it was announced that a massive state contract with a private company, Convergys, had been transferred during the company’s sale to a foreign-owned firm.
In December, Florida signed a five-year, $248 million contract with Convergys to manage the human resources for thousands of state employees. Three months later, Convergys announced that it — and the contract — were being sold to a foreign-owned company.
The contract has always been controversial. As you may recall, back in 2003 and 2004 there was a serious data breach under the Convergys contract, and the Social Security numbers and bank account information of more than 100,000 state workers were mistakenly shipped to foreign countries. We must ensure this never happens again.
Another concern involves transparency: Did Convergys know that it was about to be sold when it was negotiating the contract with state officials? If news of the impending sale had been disclosed three months earlier, the state could have reconsidered and re-bid the entire contract.
I will continue to keep a close eye on this contract and sale to ensure the protection of Florida taxpayers as well as the security of our state employees’ sensitive data.