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FCW Insider: May 16

Hill Democrats have long harbored doubts about the need to merge the Office of Personnel Management into the General Services Administration as part of a Trump administration government reorganization. Margaret Weichert, acting OPM Director, says the agency is close to releasing a legislative plan to support the merger. But if it doesn't happen, the administration has backup plans to leverage GSA's expertise and scale in contracting and IT. Adam Mazmanian has more.

The once-obscure Election Assistance Commission, now at the center of several key election security debates, has powerful supporters in Congress as it seeks to increase funding in advance of the 2020 election. Will EAC get more of a voice in the voting cybersecurity conversation? Derek B. Johnson takes a look.

Recently, a top acquisition official announced that GSA was working on a cross-agency plan for acquiring cloud collaboration and productivity tools modeled on the Pentagon's Defense Enterprise Office Solutions vehicle. A senior Office of Management and Budget official explained that the cloud push is tied to ongoing category management efforts. Mark Rockwell reports.

Quick Hits

*** The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee approved the nomination of Dale Cabaniss to be director of the Office of Personnel Management. The nomination was opposed by Senators Gary Peters (D-Mich.), Tom Carper (D-Del.), Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) and Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.). The nomination of Cabaniss, the onetime chair of the Federal Labor Relations Authority, is also opposed by the American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal employee union.

*** Former Federal CIO Tony Scott is the sole candidate to serve at executive vice chair of the Industry Advisory Council -- the private sector half of ACT-IAC. Per the rules of the group, Scott will take over as IAC chair in July 2020. Scott is head of the consulting firm TonyScottGroup LLC and is senior advisor for privacy and security at Squire Patton Boggs. Before taking the CIO job in the Obama administration, Scott held CIO posts at VMWare, Microsoft and Disney.

*** The long-awaited Federal Data Strategy -- held up in part by the 35-day partial government shutdown -- is set to hit a few milestones soon, according to Lucas Hitt, communications division chief at the Bureau of Economic Analysis and a member of the federal data strategy project management team. Speaking at an FCW event on May 15, Hitt said that documents on principles and practices will land later this month. After that, the next step is a draft of the first-year action plan and public comment -- "where the rubber meets the road" when it comes to putting policies into action, Hitt said. The first-year action plan is expected to be released in August.

*** The General Services Administration announced that it plans to put its CIO Modernization and Enterprise Transformation contract out for bidding in June 2019 and that the request for quotations will be limited to contract holders on GSA's Schedule 70.  COMET is a replacement contract for CAMEO, which supports the IT environment at the Federal Acquisition Service at GSA.

Posted on May 16, 2019 at 1:07 AM


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