D.C. payroll system flounders

The district government of Washington, D.C., last week said it has been

forced to scrap a $20 million citywide payroll system that wasn't working

properly.

Under development since 1991 and only operational for one year, the payroll

system developed by Boston contractor Business Software Associates was faulted

with issuing incorrect checks or none at all to D.C. employees.

The district, which had switched half of its 43,000 employees to the new

system, will revert to an older one at a cost of about $5 million. D.C.

Chief Financial Officer Natwar Gandhi acknowledged the problem isn't only

with the software, but also with the Byzantine rules surrounding the government's

280 pay schedules for different union work rules.

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