Upcoming Changes to the Model Tribal System (MTS)
TRIBAL DEAR COLLEAGUE LETTER
DATE: March 24, 2017
TO: ALL TRIBAL IV-D DIRECTORS
SUBJECT: Upcoming changes to the Model Tribal System (MTS)
This letter is to inform all comprehensive tribal directors, current users, and potential users of the Model Tribal System (MTS) about upcoming activities.
Since 2012, OCSE has been installing the MTS at various tribe sites and tribal consortiums. Currently ten tribes have installed MTS and two are in the process. In 2016, we enhanced the MTS by upgrading the underlying software and database, thereby addressing security vulnerabilities.
The MTS has a number of open and pending requests that we still need to address. In addition to the pending requests, we also have new procurement activities underway for ongoing MTS support. Therefore, OCSE will be undertaking the critical activities below to ensure continued support to the tribes.
- We will review pending items to determine if they are bugs, change requests, or enhancements, and then classify them accordingly. Then, in consultation with the user, we will determine if these items are still required. This will be a lengthy exercise.
- The current OCSE MTS contract expires April 15, 2017. We are actively working to have a vendor in place. In the meantime, we have increased the number of skilled federal technical staff to conduct the analysis of pending items.
- We will bring the development and test servers into OCSE’s environment.
- We will explore options for hosting MTS in the cloud at an affordable rate for tribes that are interested.
- We will also explore various options for redesigning or redeveloping the user interface of the existing MTS.
Below are answers to some anticipated questions you may have on these changes.
Question: Will the MTS be operational for current users?
The MTS will continue to be operational at the tribal locations with support from their tribal IT department or with the help of their contractors and hosting providers.
Question: What are the activities that are being suspended?
The activities that are being temporarily suspended include Change Control Board (CCB) meetings, bug fixes, and new development.
Question: Will the tribes using MTS in production have access to systems, such as Bugzilla, Alfresco, etc.?
Yes, tribes will continue to have access to Bugzilla, Alfresco, and other associated systems via a new VPN/URL connection to be communicated at a later date.
Question: Can the tribes submit new bugs?
Yes, tribes will have the ability to submit new bugs, change requests, and enhancements for consideration. However, we will not be voting at the CCB and will not be working on these bugs until August 2017 or further notice.
Question: What if there is an emergency and some fixes need to be made urgently?
OCSE will continue to implement emergency fixes. Please follow the protocols of classifying these as emergency fixes due to the limited developer resources we have currently. Absolute show stoppers will be dealt with as emergency fixes after OCSE has conducted a review.
Question: Can the tribes suggest changes to the user interface?
Yes, tribes can suggest this as an enhancement. Tribes can also highlight some of the pain points in the current system, which will enable OCSE to enhance the system. This should be entered as an enhancement using the Bugzilla tool.
We thank you for your patience and look forward to your continuing support for the MTS. If you would like more information, please contact our director for the MTS development effort, Raghavan Varadachari, at Raghavan.Varadachari@acf.hhs.gov.
Donna J. Bonar
Office of Child Support Enforcement
cc: ACF/OCSE Regional Program Managers