Thirty-nine out of 41 of the Veterans Affairs Department’s outpatient leasing projects — worth about $2.5 billion — are running behind schedule. Delays range anywhere between six months to 13 years. Most of the delays happened before the VA began the lease agreement because the Veterans Health Administration didn’t detail the project’s requirements on time. Dave Wise is a director of physical infrastructure issues at the Government Accountability Office. He testified recently before the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on National Security. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose the reason behind most of the delays and where in the leasing process things started to slow down.
The Base Realignment and Closure controversy doesn’t look different than it has the last few Congresses. The Defense Department wants another round of BRAC — Congress says absolutely not. In this week’s edition of Inside the DoD reporter’s notebook, Jared Serbu writes about a group that you wouldn’t expect would want another round of BRAC.
More information on the size of the second breach at the Office of Personnel Management will likely come this week. GovExec reports the agency will release the number of current and former federal employees — and job applicants — affected in the second cyberattack. Jeff Neal is senior vice president of ICF International and former chief human capital officer for the Homeland Security Department. He tells Depth with Francis Rose that the OPM data breach is far from over.
The Commerce Department is recovering from years of disjointed procurement oversight and spending. Commerce finds millions of dollars in procurement efficiencies thanks to an effort to improve the acquisition process that’s been going on for several years. Barry Berkowitz is the senior procurement executive at the Commerce Department. He tells Federal News Radio Executive Editor Jason Miller how he is transforming the agency and why his efforts are similar to what other chief acquisition officers say they are trying to do in a Federal News Radio survey of CAOs.
In today’s news, security clearance applicants will be cutting down a few trees to keep their applications moving along, Congress returns to work today following the July Fourth break and the Pentagon contractors ranked below retailers and banks for cybersecurity last month in an industry-developed ranking system.
Dr. Steven Rosenberg believed in the viability of immunotherapy as an effective treatment for cancer when few others would.
In the 1970s most people in the medical community didn’t believe it was possible to use a patient’s own body to attack cancer cells and slow tumor growth. Dr. Steven Rosenberg did and advanced the field of immunotherapy. Dr. Rosenberg is chief of the surgery branch of the National Cancer Institute and a finalist for a Service to America Medal in the career achievement category. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose how immunotherapy works and how its changing how doctors treat cancer.
The Office of Personnel Management cyber breaches are pushing the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee to encourage agencies to move to the Einstein program. That program is billed as a way to uncover intrusions. Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), the ranking member of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, is working on the bill along with the chairman of the Committee, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). Carper tells In Depth with Francis Rose why he and Senator Johnson think the bill is necessary and what they want it to accomplish.
The blame for the Office of Personnel Management cyber breach is on OPM right now. But OPM said the breach wasn’t its fault. Larry Allen is president of Allen Federal Business Partners and writes the Week Ahead newsletter. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose where the finger gets pointed when something goes wrong.
The Supreme Court only hears a few dozen cases a year. But one on the docket will answer big questions around contracting practices by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The question for the court is does the VA have to give preference to veteran-owned small businesses in all instances? Steve Koprince, managing partner of Koprince Law, tells In Depth with Francis Rose about the case’s potential impact.
The government’s cybersecurity spend is destined to go toward figuring where the cyber holes are while cloud computing adoption continues at a modest pace. These are a few predictions from Deltek’s Federal IT Industry Outlook. Deniece Peterson is the director of federal industry analysis for Deltek. On Industry Chatter, she tells In Depth with Francis Rose her prognosis for the Federal IT market.
In today’s news, a tiny White House program will have a big impact on how agencies work and the Office of Management and Budget is giving agencies less than two weeks to implement smart I.D. cards for network and computer access for privileged users.
The Office of Personnel Management says it’s investigating the cyber breaches that allowed the loss of information of millions of federal employees. Retired Air Force Maj. Gen. Dale Meyerrose is former the Chief Information Officer at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence. He’s now president of the Meyerrose Group. He tells In Depth at Francis Rose about what to expect next after OPM’s cyber breaches.
Soon the Pentagon and Google will be neighbors. The Defense Department is establishing a presence in Silicon Valley. The goal is to attract top tech talent to government work. Just taking that step might not be enough though. Peter Newell, former director of the Rapid Equipping Force at the Army and now managing partner at BMNT Partners, explains the challenges DoD will face on In Depth with Francis Rose.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said he thinks negotiators from the House Armed Services Committee and his committee will wrap up their discussions within the next week or so. Language on defense procurement in both bills is part of the negotiation going on right now between the two committees. Jon Etherton, principal of Etherton & Associates, explains the similarities and differences in the two bills on In Depth with Francis Rose.
Francis Rose is the host of In Depth, which airs weekdays from 4-7 p.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 as the producer and news anchor of the station’s morning drive program, the Federal Drive. He 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 also writes a weekly commentary for Federal News Radio. Read his latest columns.