OMB to verify, validate e-gov projects

The Office of Management and Budget by Sept. 30 will hire a contractor to make sure all 25 e-government projects comply with all federal laws and regulations, a senior administration official said.

“We will determine what gaps, if any, each project has and we will fill them,” said Karen Evans, OMB’s administrator for e-government and IT.

The contract for independent verification and validation services will be awarded by the General Services Administration through the Federal Supply Service schedules, and will be a one-year, firm fixed price task order agreement.

The contractor will assess all the Quicksilver initiatives to ensure they meet security, privacy, Section 508 accessibility and enterprise architecture standards. The contract also can be expanded to delve deeper into each area, such as how the project meets the accessibility needs of a blind or deaf person.

This will be the second contract OMB, through GSA, awarded for work on the e-government projects. Last month, the administration hired Edelman Public Relations to develop marketing plans for 10 initiatives (GCN story).

Evans also said four e-government projects are finalizing interagency fee-for-service agreements. This will replace the pass-the-hat method agencies used to fund the e-government initiatives for the past three years.

Agency managing partners of the E-Training, Geospatial One-Stop, Grants.gov and Recruitment One-Stop projects will submit their plans to OMB by the end of the month.

“Agencies will know what they will be getting for their money,” Evans said. “There may be a basic operation and maintenance fee every agency involved in the project will pay and then there may be a premium charge to agencies who want service above and beyond the basic services. It is like basic cable and premium cable.”

Additionally, Evans said the data reference model—the final Federal Enterprise Architecture model—will be released in the next two weeks, and OMB is asking agencies to update their “Proud to Be” goals for July 2005.

Agencies set goals in each of the five President’s Management Agenda areas to meet by last July and now OMB is asking them to determine a new set of metrics.

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