And, so realized the state government after spending nearly $30 million while trying to replace the old and out of date criminal database of Alaska! Launched in 1984, the system was in dire need of an overhaul since it was neither replaced nor upgraded in the 3 decades since its inception. Law enforcement agencies all across the state fear the ramifications of the failure of the system, which would cause serious data disruptions for the police departments and impede their work.
Although the decision to upgrade the ASPIN started a good 11 years ago, it has faced significant hurdles along the way and lay in a state of dormancy since 2013. One of the glitches in replacing the system is that even after spending millions, the new ASPIN remains only partially complete and largely untested. External auditors said that the project lies in such disarray that they are not sure how much time and money it would take to put it back on track.
For now, all further work on the new ASPIN system has been stopped but the botched project highlighted the tensions brewing under the surface in the Alaska Department of Public Safety. The repercussions of the failed project were wide reaching within the department as conspicuous restructuring efforts were triggered by it.