Intercepts

* Spectrum czar. Cindy Raiford, currently deputy director for communications in the ASD/C3I office (awaiting congressionally directed renaming), will soon become manager or director of a beefed-up DOD spectrum office, according to a memo from Art Money, the senior civilian official in the ASD/C3I shop.

Raiford will focus solely on spectrum issues in the new job and will get three staffers to help her protect the military spectrum from domestic and international incursions. The spectrum topic heated up at the highest levels of DOD last year when the United States almost lost valuable Global Positioning System spectrum to satellite phone companies at an international conference.

In a related development, the Senate Armed Services Committee added $44 million to the 1999 DOD authorization bill for enhancements to GPS satellites; those enhancements include dynamic frequency reconfiguration and regional directional signal enhancements.

* Go, Marines. That could easily be the subtitle of the Senate Armed Services Committee report on the 1999 DOD authorization bill, which acknowledged that the committee had paid close attention to pitches made by Marine Commandant Brig. Charles Krulak and tossed a lot of extra money at Corps programs and projects, including IT. The SASC report said the committee allocated funding in the 1999 DOD bill to allow all the military services to acquire "essential core requirements," adding that "particular emphasis was given to Marine Corps programs in response to the level of concern raised by Gen. Krulak in his testimony.''

On the IT front, this attention translated into the Senate relieving the Marines of a lot of Year 2000 concerns by adding $20 million to the Corps' budget for the purchase of 8,000 high-powered PC workstations. This sounds like a made-to-order sales opportunity for Marine reservist and Micron widget peddler Ron Cassoni. The Senate bill also gives the Marines $64.1 million to upgrade the service's base IT infrastructure worldwide.

Because Lt. Col. Jerry Baigis installed the biggest telephone switch in all of DOD for Marine bases on Okinawa last year, I guess this new money means camps Lejeune and Pendleton will soon see the installation of similar switches.

* Star moves. Two Army IT/C4 colonels should soon be wearing stars, pending approval of their nominations by Congress. SecDef William Cohen said Col. Marilyn Quagliotti, the deputy C4 director on the Joint Staff, and Col. John Urias, the WIN project manager at Cecom, have both been tapped for promotion to brigadier general.

* Just confused. That's how former DISA director Lt. Gen. Al Edmonds described language in the House DOD authorization bill that slams the Global Command and Control System. Edmonds also can't quite comprehend why the House said GCCS won't be fielded until 2003 when he clearly remembers fielding it two years ago.

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