Can $50,000 end what Supervisor Jeff Engel called “the Munis nightmare?”
For more than 5 years, the county has been struggling to transition from one payroll system, Penamation, to another, Munis—expending over $1 million and countless staff-hours in the process. Now, the end may be in sight.
A troubled transition
Plumas County officials, from the supervisors to the auditor to the Human Resources Department, were optimistic Nov. 14 that the additional funds will complete the final steps that will allow the county’s payroll system to operate smoothly.
In 2017 the county selected Munis, a fiscal operations service for cities and counties, to operate its payroll system. Munis will replace Penamation, which the county has been using for over a decade.
Over the last five-plus years Plumas County has spent more than $1 million transitioning from one payroll system to another, said County Administrative Officer Debra Lucero. Tyler Technologies, based in Texas, represents Munis systems and is working directly with county on the transition, said Cyndi Tweedle, Human Resources Department analyst.
“It is no secret the struggles we’ve had to get the technical assistance we have needed to complete the build,” she told the supervisors at their Nov. 14 meeting.
Corona virus blocked communications in early 2020, and a high rate of turnover among county department heads and workers created knowledge gaps that contributed to delays, Lucero added. But the difficulties have continued, at least in part because Tyler technicians are not familiar with some of the requirements of a California county, she said.
Calling on outside help
Lucero and Tweedle both recommended hiring ClientFirst, a California-based technology consulting group, to fill in the gaps that have prevented Munis from becoming fully operational.
“We just have to get this done,” Lucero said.
“And quickly—not in another year,” added Martee Nieman, Plumas County Auditor.
Engel agreed: “I would really like to see what it’s going to take to fix this Munis nightmare,” he said.
Supervisor Kevin Goss’s motion to approve $50,000 in general funds to hire ClientFirst passed unanimously. Supervisor Tom McGowan did not attend the meeting.