Bid protests must be filed online starting in May

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  • Vendors looking to appeal agency contracting decisions will have do so online starting next month. The Government Accountability Office plans to launch a web-based Bid Protest Filing System on May 1. GAO said it will create a more seamless and efficient process, providing real-time updates to the agencies and parties involved. There will be a $350 filing fee. (Government Accountability Office)
  • Three years after the Office of Personnel Management data breach, the Interior Department still has some cybersecurity gaps. An inspector general report found Interior still couldn’t detect “some of the most basic threats” on its computers systems. The agency also hadn’t implemented incident detection and response recommendations from the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The IG said Interior didn’t investigate intrusion attempts and left compromised computers on their networks for months at a time. (Department of Interior Office of Inspector General)
  • Chief human capital officers have a new set of performance standards to make sure they’re managing their workforce properly. OPM unveiled new evaluation system standards for agencies. The Chief Human Capital Officers Council agreed to the new metrics. They’re part of agencies’ efforts to adopt a new human capital framework. (Chief Human Capital Officers Council)
  • Changes to how you log on to your computer and how you get into your building are coming. The Office of Management and Budget released the long-awaited update to the federal identity, credential, and access management policy. OMB issued the draft memo on April 6 seeking comment from agencies and vendors by May 6. The suggested revisions focus on moving agencies toward identity management shared services, improving cybersecurity by adding these capabilities to existing programs and ensuring agencies are taking a risk based approach to managing authentication and access. The draft memo also rescinded five identity management memos dating back to 2004. (Office of the Federal Chief Information Officer)
  • Details of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s reorganization plan are released. USAID Administrator Mark Green revealed a new agency organizational chart to employees. omThe plan makes no mention of a workforce reduction, but the agency will have to adapt to some budget cuts. Congress gave USAID a $1.35 billion  budget for operating expenses in fiscal 2018, a $14 million reduction from 2017. The new org chart comes after the State Department gave the agency the go-ahead to proceed with their own hiring strategy. (Federal News Radio)
  • The pay freeze continues for the vice president and some senior political appointees through calendar year 2018. The omnibus spending bill that Congress signed at the end of March includes a provision that continues a pay freeze that’s been in place for 2013. It does not apply to General Schedule employees. It only applies to employees serving in an Executive Schedule position, a non career appointee in the Senior Executive Service paid above a certain level, limited term appointees and others in specific circumstances. The pay freeze doesn’t apply to General Schedule employees. (Chief Human Capital Officers Council)
  • A Pentagon audit found major shortcomings in the methods the Defense Department uses to track abuse of government charge cards. The inspector general faulted two DoD organizations for dramatically underreporting suspected cases of waste, fraud and abuse. Among the problems: Auditors say Pentagon procurement officials failed to report tens of thousands of cases of credit card delinquencies to the Office of Management and Budget. And the Defense Travel Management Office only reported 139 cases of charge card misuse over a two year period — even though the actual number was more than 260,000. (Department of Defense)
  • The Army says two soldiers died in a helicopter crash Friday night, the latest incident in an extremely difficult week for military aviation. The service members were conducting a training mission at Fort Campbell, Kentucky. Three Marines died in another helicopter accident last Tuesday, and an Air Force Thunderbirds pilot was killed on Wednesday during a routine aerial demonstration. (Federal News Radio)
  • A new face appears in the White House today. John Bolton will report for duty as President Trump’s new national security advisor. A former U.N. ambassador under President George W. Bush, Bolton joins at a critical time. The president over the weekend issued threats to Syria for a chemical attack on a rebel-held city. And a sustained policy for dealing with the North Korean nuclear threat has yet to emerge. Plus the President is seeking China’s cooperation on Korea while escalating the war of words over trade tariffs.