GLRO 20-11 Internet Capacity for 2020 Assembly Election

Type of decision: 
GLRO decision
Code: 
GLRO 20-11
Date signed: 
12 November 2019
Decision by: 
Mary Harpley, Chief Officer of the GLA

Executive summary

The monitoring and results consolidation of the 2020 London Assembly Elections will take place in City Hall. To permit this, dedicated Internet connections are required at City Hall to allow the technical infrastructure of the e-count system to securely and reliably connect with the three count centres.

Decision

1.1 The e-count of ballots for the GLA Elections is conducted at three count centres across London. A further central site is established in City Hall to perform several critical e-count related functions, including top-level oversight of the count progress, monitoring of the technical functionality of the e-count system and consolidation of results for London-wide contests. The count centres must connect securely to the central site.

1.2 The primary and secondary City Hall internet connections cannot be used for this purpose. The solution provided by the e-count provider requires that the equipment accepts incoming connections, however, the two main internet links to City Hall are provided through third parties and accordingly are not able to meet this criterion.

1.3 Accordingly, alternative arrangements are required. The intended approach is to install two additional internet lines into City Hall which can provide the necessary service.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

2.1 To provide increased resilience, the establishment of two dedicated lines is planned. Approaches will be explored with the internet service provider and GLA Technology Group (GLA TG) to minimise single points of failure.

2.2 To allow for the testing of the connection and for the configuration details of the connection to be in known before the setup of the hardware, the connection should be provided prior to the end of January 2020.

2.3 The procurement and setup of the internet connections would be overseen by the GLA TG, and the above advice has been provided in consultation with GLA TG.

2.4 After the conclusion of the elections, the lines may be re-tasked for other GLA purposes, as deemed appropriate, thus providing several further months of extra capacity if needed.

Objectives and expected outcomes

2.1 To provide increased resilience, the establishment of two dedicated lines is planned. Approaches will be explored with the internet service provider and GLA Technology Group (GLA TG) to minimise single points of failure.

2.2 To allow for the testing of the connection and for the configuration details of the connection to be in known before the setup of the hardware, the connection should be provided prior to the end of January 2020.

2.3 The procurement and setup of the internet connections would be overseen by the GLA TG, and the above advice has been provided in consultation with GLA TG.

2.4 After the conclusion of the elections, the lines may be re-tasked for other GLA purposes, as deemed appropriate, thus providing several further months of extra capacity if needed.

Equality comments

4.1 There are no specific impacts on those with protected characteristics arising out of this decision, as per the public sector equality duty.

Other considerations

Key risks and issues

3.1 Due to the arrangements available with Internet Service Providers, the connections would be leased for a year, rather than the six months that it is expected to be operational.

3.2 Two lease lines do currently exist in City Hall; however, one is currently being utilised, and another is in the process of being assigned.

3.3 The technical complexity of installing the internet is low given that key infrastructure has already been installed for the existing lease lines.

3.4 The timeframe for installing the lines is unpredictable, dependent on the availability of the service provider. However, given previous GLA experiences and the existing hardware, it is expected that a timely deliverable will be achieved.

Impact assessments and consultations

3.5 The technical approach has been discussed and agreed with GLA TG, along with the technical lead of the contractor responsible for providing the e-counting system.

Financial comments

5.1     The cost is estimated at up to £17,000 and can be met from the elections budget.

Activity table

Activity

Timeline

Procurement of contract

1 November 2019

Delivery Start Date

10 January 2020

Delivery End Date

17 January 2020

Project Closure

10 May 2020

Appendices and supporting papers

None


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