Nathan Stubbs

LCG launches in-house phone network

by Nathan Stubbs

Lafayette Consolidated Government has gone live with its own internal phone network, expected to generate approximately $1 million in savings over the next decade. The new Internet-Protocol-Telephony system converges local government’s phone and data services onto one network, run largely over city-owned fiber optics and managed by the city’s IT department. The system greatly reduces LCG’s dependence on AT&T’s services. “AT&T used to do everything,” says LCG Chief Information Officer Keith Thibodeaux. “Now, the entire system is internal to us.” While the system will still be relying on some AT&T network lines, Thibodeaux anticipates LCG’s phone bill with AT&T to go down from $60,000 a month to approximately $20,000 a month. The majority of the savings will go toward paying off the system's costs as well as upgrades to the city's network. The IPT system, which has been a goal of City-Parish President Joey Durel's administration over the past three years, also offers LCG employees added features such as call-forwarding and integrated messaging. “It’s efficiency, productivity and some cost savings,” Thibodeaux says. “That’s why we did it.”