On this week’s In Depth Digest: highlights of my conversations with Senator Tom Coburn, on how the Senate’s recently rejected veterans bill hurts vets; David Maurer of the Government Accountability Office on why Homeland Security law enforcement ammo purchases are going down; Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Manufacturing and Industrial Base Policy Elana Broitman on a new public-private partnership announced by President Obama; and leading defense budget expert Gordon Adams on the details we know about the coming request from the White House, and what we should look for in the official document Tuesday.
President Obama signed off on an omnibus budget. It will fund federal agencies through the rest of the fiscal year and avert a government shutdown. It’s the first appropriated spending bill in nearly a decade, and it sets the stage for a full-year budget bill that the Senate and House Appropriations Committees should be able to deliver by September 30th. I discussed the winners and losers of the spending bill with Mike Conneen on Capital Insider, and told him how this bill will affect Federal employees.
The term “silos of excellence” is an old euphemism in government that pokes fun at the problems agencies have in cooperating across organizations and across cultures. It’s a term Jon Carver pulls out right away in describing what he wants to defeat to achieve the White House’s cross-agency performance goals. Jon is the Small Business Administration’s Chief Financial Officer, Associate Administrator for Performance Management, and Chief Acquisition Officer. He was on my show today talking about how the SBA uses data to meet and exceed performance goals.
Also on the show today: Greg Stamford of the Federal Managers Association on why the new budget is a good deal for Federal leaders; Bob Woods of Topside Consulting (and former GSA IT acquisition leader) on what you and your colleagues can learn from Inspector Clouseau (hint: see below); and Roger Waldron of the Coalition for Government Procurement on priorities for the next OFPP Administrator. You can listen to all of the interviews from today’s show on the In Depth show blog.
Bob Woods’s inspiration:
Tuesday is the first day of a new job for former Administrator of Federal Procurement Policy Joe Jordan. He joins the private-sector company FedBid. As the search for a new OFPP Administrator begins, Joe’s predecessor, Dan Gordon, reviewed a potential agenda for the next person to take that job. Dan is now associate dean for government procurement law studies at George Washington University Law School.
Also on today’s show: Roll Call Senior Editor David Hawkings on two Congressional departures – Sen. Tom Coburn and Rep. Jim Moran – that could reshape how the executive branch does business; and Federal News Radio Senior Correspondent Mike Causey on why today’s Dr. Martin Luther King Day holiday isn’t a holiday for everyone. You can listen to all the interviews from today’s show on the In Depth show blog.
Security concerns about Healthcare.gov are giving new prominence to information security, at the same time private-sector companies like Target and others are suffering from cyber breaches. Earl Crane, Senior Principal at Promontory Financial Group and former Director for Federal Cybersecurity Policy on the National Security Staff at the Executive Office of the President, says 2014 should be the year security becomes a priority in the C-suite of your organization. He explained why, and told me why resiliency is a critical element of that prioritization.
Also on today’s In Depth with Francis Rose: the Federal News Countdown, featuring the three most important Federal news stories of the week, selected by guests Lee Dougherty and Jim Williams (including the first-ever countdown story about whiskey – thanks Lee!); and Federal News Radio Senior Correspondent Mike Causey on the pros and cons of a new self-plus-one option in the Federal health insurance plan. You can listen to all the interviews on today’s In Depth show blog.
Two hearings today in the House of Representatives probed possible security problems with Healthcare.gov. One hearing, in the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee, included testimony from “white-hat” hackers who told the committee the web site is extremely vulnerable to penetration, and people who register on it could be exposed to identity theft. I talked about the hearing, and the potential vulnerabilities, on the John Batchelor Show tonight.
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The clock is ticking for agencies to update their public networks to Internet Protocol Version 6. The General Services Administration is trying to make this transition as smooth as possible. Mary Davie is assistant commissioner of the Office of Integrated Technology at the Federal Acquisition Service at the General Services Administration. She told me how her agency is making the transition easier for Federal agencies.
Also on today’s show: Anthony Robbins, Vice President of Federal at Brocade, on Industry Chatter; Guy Timberlake of the American Small Business Coalition on why more small-business government contractors should get PO’d; and Tim McManus of the Partnership for Public Service on why the deep cuts in conference spending are bad for the government long-term. You can listen to all the interviews on today’s In Depth show blog.
The $1 trillion omnibus spending bill for the rest of Fiscal Year 2014 should pass both Houses of Congress by the end of the week. For the first time in a long time, we have an appropriated Defense bill. One of the people looking at it is Gordon Adams, professor of International Relations at American University, distinguished fellow at the Stimson Center and former associate director for National Security and International Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget. Gordon analyzed the results of the budget, and why Pentagon officials should be happy.
Also on today’s show: Steve Kelman of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, on why today may be the “good old days” of government acquisition; Ken Price, Deputy Regional Inspector General for Evaluation and Inspections in the Office of the Inspector General at the Department of Health and Human Services, on why the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid – and its contractors – are struggling with transitioning to electronic health records; and Federal News Radio Senior Correspondent Mike Causey on how the new budget deal will affect Federal employees. You can listen to all of the interviews from today’s show on the In Depth show blog.