Tomblin also announced Thursday he plans to set up a task force to help public facilities utilize the high-capacity routers' capabilities.
The task force, which will include a Cisco representative, won't start its work until after the 30-day review. The group is expected to deliver a report to Tomblin and state lawmakers by Jan. 1, 2014.
"We need to make sure the routers are being used to their full capacity," Alsop said.
A recent West Virginia Legislative Auditor's report found that the state wasted at least $7.9 million - and up to $15 million - by purchasing oversized routers, which funnel data from one computer network to another. The state audit, and a previous federal audit, determined that the state could have purchased smaller, less expensive routers for hundreds of sites.
The Cisco routers are designed to serve a minimum of 500 Internet connections, but the state has installed the pricey devices at rural schools, planning agencies and libraries with only a handful of computer terminals.
The state audit directed Purchasing Division officials to investigate whether the Cisco sales representatives and engineers who brokered the $24 million deal should be barred from doing business in West Virginia. State auditors concluded that Cisco's sales staff showed "wanton indifference to the interest of the public."
Cisco disputed that finding in a letter to Alsop this week. State Purchasing Director David Tincher has recommended that Cisco sales staff not be barred, according to a letter Alsop sent to state lawmakers on Thursday.
"Cisco believes the criticism leveled at the state by the Legislative Auditor is misplaced, and fails to recognize the forward looking nature of your vision," Cisco Vice President Curtis Hill wrote to Alsop earlier this week.
During the 30-day statewide "site analysis," Tomblin's group won't necessarily recommend removing routers from public facilities that currently don't need or use the extra capacity, Alsop said.
"The key question we must answer is whether a [site] can be reasonably expected to use the capabilities of the routers within the useful life of the routers - up to 10 years," he said. "The state must make a reasoned judgment, not only about the needs of today but future needs over the next several years."
Reach Eric Eyre at erice...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4869.