E-gov briefs

House panel OKs e-gov bill

The House Government Reform Committee approved a bill Oct. 9 to create an e-government office within the Office of Management and Budget and other provisions to coordinate information technology in the federal government. The bill now goes to the full House, but is not likely to pass before Congress recesses for the November elections.

The House bill is similar to one already passed by the Senate. The biggest difference is money. The House bill calls for $200 million during four years and the Senate version, sponsored by Sen. Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), would spend $346 million during four years for e-government initiatives and projects.

The House version also contains a provision sponsored by Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.) to allow midlevel IT managers in federal agencies and private companies to swap jobs for up to two years and share their expertise. Congressional negotiators will have to resolve the differences once the House passes the legislation.

E-Travel effort moves ahead

The General Services Administration released a draft solicitation Oct. 7 for the governmentwide e-Travel initiative, which is intended to provide one, Web-based system for all federal travel needs.

The draft request for proposals outlines the goals for the initiative, one of 24 overseen by the Office of Management and Budget as part of the E-Government Strategy. Those goals all focus on procuring a system that is based as much as possible on commercial off-the-shelf products and services. The system should be ready for full deployment at one to three federal agencies by December 2003.

The system will cover every aspect of federal travel management, from the user interface to the back-end payment and approval processes.

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