Federal News Countdown: Budget, BYOD and conference spending

Today’s guests on the Federal News Countdown:
Jim Williams, senior vice president of business development, Daon
Dan Chenok, executive director, IBM Center for the Business of Government

Jim William’s stories
#3 This Congress could be least productive since 1947
From Federal Times:

Congress is on pace to make history with the least productive legislative year in the post-World War II era. Just 61 bills have become law to date in 2012 out of 3,914 bills that have been introduced by lawmakers, or less than 2 percent of all proposed laws, according to a USA TODAY analysis of records since 1947 kept by the U.S. House Clerk’s office.

#2 VA paid $52K for ‘Patton’ conference training video
From Federal News Radio:


A 15-minute training video that cost $52,000 to make joins the examples of excessive spending at two Veterans Affairs’ conferences last year with a total pricetag of $5 million. VA showed the video at the two human resources training conferences in Orlando. It features an actor portraying Gen. George Patton and parodying the opening scene of the 1970 movie Patton.

#1 Obama says compromise can be found on sequester
From The Hill

President Obama said Monday that he thinks both parties can compromise and avert the across-the-board spending cuts under sequestration that could take a chunk out of both defense and domestic spending.

Dan Chenok’s stories
#3 Use your own smartphone – and get paid to do it
From Federal Times:

Federal employees are gradually using their own smartphones and tablets for work. But few, if any, are getting reimbursed for that cost. As a result, many feds with government-issued smartphones are reluctant to give them up. But that may soon change.

#2 Survey: Feds can and should continue attending conferences
From Government Executive:

As the Obama administration and Congress continue a crackdown on agency spending for travel and conferences, a clear majority of federal employees believe such gatherings are important and that their supervisors remain open to their participation, a new survey shows.

#1 OMB: Spending bills exceed budget caps, could trigger cuts
From Federal News Radio:

Spending levels appropriated by Congress, so far, for fiscal 2013 fail to live within the limits set by last year’s Budget Control Act (BCA), the Office of Management and Budget said in a report issued Monday. If Congress fails to adhere to the annual limits, OMB is required to enact automatic cuts to bring them back into balance, Acting OMB Director Jeffrey Zients wrote in a letter to President Barack Obama that preceded OMB’s report.