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*** Eric Chewning, current chief of staff to the defense secretary, is stepping down after a year on the job and will be replaced by Jen Stewart, currently House Armed Services Committee minority director. Chewning's departure follows that of other high-level defense officials including DARPA head Peter Highnam in December. Chewning was also named in emails regarding military assistance and funding for Ukraine -- a central issue in President Donald Trump's impeachment proceedings. HASC Ranking Member Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) also announced Dan Sennott as the new minority staff director starting in late January.

*** The military's newest branch Space Force is already preparing to make contract awards. The Air Force announced Jan. 6 a Commercial Solutions Opening Pitch Day to buy "innovative solutions or potential new capabilities" that can "close capability gaps or provide potential technology advancements" not currently being used by the Space Force and can "enhance or streamline Space Force mission capabilities." Responses are due Feb. 5.

*** A Senate bill to set up a center of excellence for artificial intelligence at the General Services Administration would cost about $10 million over five years, according to a Congressional Budget Office estimate. The AI in Government Act of 2019 was reported favorably by the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee in November.

Posted on Jan 07, 2020 at 2:29 AM


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