FCW Insider: July 28, 2021
A bipartisan group of lawmakers from the House Oversight and Reform Committee wants the National Archives and Records Administration to apply for funding from the Technology Modernization Fund to modernize its IT systems and clear its backlog of 500,000 records requests from veterans.
The military services could be required to audit its legacy IT systems and software as part of a proposal to be considered in the 2022 defense authorization bill.
Deb Haaland, secretary of the Interior, told a Senate panel on Tuesday that a decision on whether to keep the Bureau of Land Management's headquarters in Grand Junction, Colorado needs to come "fairly soon."
*** President Joe Biden told reporters on July 27 that a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal employees is under consideration. The Department of Veterans Affairs instituted a vaccine mandate for clinical employees on July 26. The Department of Defense is reportedly also considering a mandate for employees, according to accounts in Politico and elsewhere.
At her daily press briefing, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said, "as a big employer, the federal government, it is also our responsibility to continue to look at ways that we can protect people and save lives. And so, we will continue to look, agencies will continue to look, we will continue to look at what steps we need to take for our workforce."
*** A new report from the IBM Center for The Business of Government argues that Other Transaction Authority agreements – which use methods outside the traditional competitive procurement methods to test new technologies and develop prototypes for government use – can "serve a broader set of government needs than has occurred to date" through reforms designed to incentivize innovative and nontraditional contractors to see projects through from prototyping to production.
*** Lawmakers have proposed the Defense Department develop a tracking system for all vaccines it administers “including adverse reactions and refusals,” according to draft language for the 2022 National Defense Authorization Act. The bill, which will get marked up by the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Military Personnel on July 28, also calls for reviews of technical education needs for military personnel in areas, such as cyber, and the viability of creating a U.S. Digital Service Academy.
Posted by FCW Staff on Jul 28, 2021 at 2:12 AM