Federal Triangle

E-gov reporting

All eyes were on the Office of Management and Budget last week in anticipation of the release of the status report on the Bush administration's compliance with the E-Government Act.

But by late last week, word was that OMB officials still needed a few more days to complete the report. And sources on Capitol Hill said that they had yet to see it.

Karen Evans, OMB's administrator for e-government and information technology, said OMB officials would brief lawmakers late last week, so OMB's Web site will be a popular destination early this week.

21st-century cartographers wanted

There's a new kind of federal IT job on the landscape, and it may be the wave of the future. The Environmental Protection Agency has hired a geographic information officer to oversee development of an architecture for mapping and imagery data.

Brenda Smith started the job this week and reports to EPA chief information officer Kim Nelson, who created the new position.

The geographic information officer ensures that information collected by the agency includes geospatial data and follows standards so it can be shared with other organizations, Nelson said.

A list of lists

Perhaps there needs to be a watch list for the terrorist watch list.

Lawmakers have been increasingly frustrated with delays in merging the dozen terrorist watch lists into a single database.

Last week, Rep. Jim Turner (D-Texas) called for immediate oversight hearings.

The Terrorist Screening Center, charged with consolidating the lists, was launched Dec. 1, 2003, but at the time the FBI said the center was not fully operational and a single database had not been created. DHS Secretary Tom Ridge recently told lawmakers the list would not be completed until the end of the summer, and the DHS strategic plan released last month indicated a list would be ready by the end of the year.

"Continued delays regarding the integration of terrorist watch lists are unacceptable," Turner wrote. "In the last month, the date for watch list completion has slipped by nine months."

EDS' NMCI headache

Not only has EDS ended up losing money rolling out the massive Navy Marine Corps Intranet project, but now federal regulators are scrutinizing the company's books regarding the $8.8 billion contract.

As part of a probe by the Securities and Exchange Commission into EDS finances, SEC officials have "obtained testimony and information in late 2003 and additional information in 2004, including a request for information relating to recent developments regarding the company's Navy contract," EDS officials said in a statement.

EDS is the lead contractor for the enterprisewide network, deployed to more than a quarter of all Navy and Marine employees so far. The initiative has been a financial drag on the company in recent quarters.

EDS officials attributed the loss to "a decline in the average seat price based on the types of seats ordered and expected to be ordered by the [Navy], as well as a reduced period of time in which to generate seat revenue due to deployment delays and associated incremental estimated operating costs."

Ah, of course.

Baby makes three

Alan Balutis, president of Veridyne Inc., and his wife, Tish Tucker, welcomed a new addition to their household last month — Ian Tucker Balutis. But the longtime IT executive said the couple did not intentionally give the newest addition to their family the initials I.T. In fact, Balutis says he didn't even realize that information technology was so deeply embedded in his psyche until a friend pointed it out. n

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In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


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