In today’s news, federal IT employees should expect to get more attention this fall from the Office of Management and Budget, three members of Congress ask the GAO to evaluate an IT project run by the Census Bureau, and federal contractors are revolting against the Obama administration’s latest attempt to make sure they comply with labor laws.
Saturday marks the ten-year anniversary of the day Hurricane Katrina made landfall in southern Louisiana. The Pentagon says in the decade since then, it’s made several changes that are intended to get Defense Department resources to local disaster zones within hours instead of days. More from Federal News Radio’s DoD reporter, Jared Serbu.
Federal Chief Information Officer Tony Scott quickly recognized federal agencies and the private sector have the similar challenges in hiring and training IT workers. In his short seven months in government, Scott added the IT workforce to his top-priority list. Scott tells executive editor Jason Miller about how OMB will ramp its efforts to improve the federal technology workforce over the next few months.
Veteran owned small businesses might have too many options to help them earn federal contracting opportunities. And the differences between the Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Concern and Vets First program are confusing. Marci Love Thomas is senior counsel at the General Counsel’s government contracts practice and former senior attorney adviser at the Small Business Administration. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose about the differences between the two programs.
Budgeteers are putting their own stake in the federal community. They have at least 148,000 participants across more than 180 agencies. Members of the budget community created their own online collaboration tool to share ideas documents and data with each other. And other federal communities are joining the MAX Federal Community now too. John Kamensky is a senior research fellow for the IBM Center for the Business of Government. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose how the Max Fedeal Community works.
Chief information officers know more now about long standing issues with federal IT security thanks to the cyber breaches at the Office of Personnel Management. Those problems date back to the 1990s when cyber threats started to change and agencies didn’t try to keep up. Richard Spires is CEO of Resilient Network Systems and former chief information officer at the Homeland Security Department. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose about three big problems with federal IT security.
Congress doesn’t come back to Washington until after the Labor Day holiday, but pretty much everyone watching the budget process thinks Congress will pass a continuing resolution of some kind. Larry Allen is the president of Allen Federal Business Partners and author of the Week Ahead newsletter. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose that a CR isn’t just bad for agencies — it’s bad for contractors too.
Perception isn’t reality for bid protests in the federal government. Some perceptions — like there are more protests than ever — are more chatter than they are real. Ralph White is managing associate general counsel for procurement law at the Government Accountability Office. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose the idea that there are more protests than ever isn’t supported by the numbers.
GSA officials want feedback on new digital tools designed to help acquisition workers cut back on cost and time when choosing contracts.
In today’s news, two senators want to know if the four federal payroll providers are doing enough to protect employees from identity theft, a fourth Fort Hood soldier has pleaded guilty to smuggling immigrants across the Texas-Mexico border and EPA officials say they should have known the potential for a blowout before a closed gold mine in Colorado sent 3 million gallons of toxic wastewater into the Animus river.
Some missing controls at the Department of Homeland Security are keeping the agency from knowing everything it needs to know about how its employees are using charge cards. Mark Bell is assistant inspector general for audit at the Office of Inspector General at the Homeland Security Department. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose about the scope of the charge card program at the agency.
Plenty of workers fear the noise and distractions of open offices. Those with disabilities say the situation can be even worse for them. But a couple have found ways to make their offices more bearable. As Federal News Radio’s Emily Kopp reports these tricks and tools may work for you whether you have disabilities or not.
The Army awarded the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle to Oshkosh. The contract could be worth as much as 30 billion dollars. The award is a blow to Lockheed Martin and AM General, the other bidders on the contract. James Tinsley is managing director at Avascent. He’s been following the JLTV competition since the beginning and he tells In Depth with Francis Rose that the award to Oshkosh isn’t a huge surprise.
Young federal employees have a new space to communicate and share ideas and with each other. Young Government Leaders has launched an online university. It’s a place where feds can share the lessons they’ve learned in training or articles relevant to their jobs in the federal workplace. Miguel Joey Aviles is the chief learning officer for YGL. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose how the university can help young feds with their careers.
The National Security Agency’s leader — Adm.l Mike Rogers — now has a senior adviser for equality. Debora Plunkett holds that position and has been in that role for about almost a year. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose about her office’s mission and the responsibilities she was given when the office was created.
Francis Rose is the host of In Depth, which airs weekdays from 8-10 a.m. on 1500 AM in the Washington, DC metro area and online everywhere. Francis has covered all three branches of the federal government as a broadcast journalist since 1998. He joined Federal News Radio in 2006, and launched In Depth in 2008 as a daily show focused on connecting federal executives to the information they need to do their jobs better.
Francis has developed multiple popular segments within his show including Federal News Countdown, Industry Chatter and Pentagon Solutions.
Francis also writes a weekly commentary for Federal News Radio. Read his latest columns.