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FCW Insider: Jan 9

The standoff over a controversial border wall is holding up activity on a planned $230 million overhaul of key Transportation Security Administration systems. Adam Mazmanian has the story.

NASA is operating without a congressional appropriation but its key governmentwide acquisition vehicle so far is navigating the shutdown. Mark Rockwell explains how SEWP manages to sell during the shutdown and how long it can keep the lights on.

On day 18 of the partial government shutdown, Majority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) unveiled the House Democrats' plan to reopen government, calling a resolution to the shutdown a top priority. Chase Gunter reports.

On the Senate side, Democrats are declining to approve routine matters for votes during the shutdown. Chase has more.

Quick Hits

*** In just a few days, more than 800,000 feds across the government will face their first payday without a check as a result of the partial government shutdown. But the impact of the partial shutdown, now in its 19th day, isn't limited to federal employees.

Contractors are also feeling the pain. SAIC, a large tech integrator, pegged lost revenue at $10 million per week at a recent investors conference, according to a report in Washington Technology. Bloomberg offered an industry-wide estimate of $200 million a day lost by contactors across all sectors.

*** Insurance provider State Farm is the first company to be granted a national waiver by the Federal Aviation Administration to fly drones over people and out of the operator's line of sight. State Farm uses the unmanned aircraft to assess property damage after catastrophic events, such as hurricanes floods and wildfires.

In a Jan. 8 statement, the company said it had used temporary waivers for such operations. The FAA and others have had concerns about drones being flown over people and loss of operator control once the vehicles traveled beyond the line of sight of those operators.

The waiver allows State Farms "claims pilots" to do such assessments anywhere in the U.S. through November of 2022. A State Farm spokeswoman told FCW the FAA granted the waiver in November, but the company had to make some minor adjustments before formally announcing it.

Posted on Jan 09, 2019 at 1:00 AM


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