Federal Drive with Tom Temin

By Federal News Network | Hubbard Radio

Listen to a podcast, please open Podcast Republic app. Available on Google Play Store.


Category: Government

Open in Apple Podcasts


Open RSS feed


Open Website


Rate for this podcast

Subscribers: 53
Reviews: 0

Description

When he's not tooling around the National Capital region on his motorcycle, Tom Temin interviews federal executives and government contractors who provide analysis and insight on the many critical issues facing the Executive branch. The Federal Drive is found at FederalNewsNetwork.com and 1500 AM in the Washington D.C. region.

Episode Date
What the return-to-the-office means for technology support
00:17:00
By nearly all accounts, the federal workforce will be highly hybrid in the post-pandemic era. Few will return to the office five days a week. Few will telework five days a week. For one view of what this means for technology and the investments needed to support the new work mode, the Federal Drive turned to the president of HP Federal, Todd Gustafson.
May 20, 2022
The Navy's construction battalion celebrates eight decades of service
00:18:51
The Navy builds lots of things that float. But it also needs ports, depots, and other constructed facilities. The Naval Construction Battalion Center is celebrating 80 years, having been established June 2, 1942. For the latest on its contemporary mission and activities, we turn to its commander, Captain Jeff Powell.
May 20, 2022
Leaders cite progress under cyber EO, but lawmakers press for more amid persistent threats
00:14:43
By most accounts, federal agencies have made great strides since last May's cyber executive order. Still, at the one mark, lawmakers pressed Biden administration officials on whether agencies have done enough to defend critical networks from cyber attacks. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday
May 20, 2022
After high staff attrition, USDA seeks to rebuild with ‘robust’ hiring
00:14:33
More than two years after the Agriculture Department relocated, with a lot of controversy, two research facilities out of Washington, D.C., staffing levels at the labs are getting closer to normal. But the Government Accountability Office says USDA’s process for deciding on Kansas City, Missouri, left out a few things. Joining the Federal Drive with more, Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman.
May 20, 2022
How one agency made sure vaccines and other COVID medicines reached the poor and underserved
00:18:12
When the government spent billions on health measures in response to the pandemic, officials worried whether enough would flow to the poor and vulnerable. Such people live in both urban and rural areas. My next quest coordinated the work to get millions of vaccines and other medications to community health centers. She's the director of the Office of Quality Improvement at the Health Resources and Services Administration, and a finalist in this year's Service to America Medals program, Dr. Suma Nair.
May 19, 2022
Conditions are cooling off for troubled Solar Winds
00:16:34
By any measure software vendor Solar Winds was a high flyer, with many federal customers for its IT managements software. Now the company says it's nearly recovered from the 2020 Sunburst hack that sent federal agencies fleeing...and became part of the cybersecurity vernacular. The Federal Drive got more from Solar Winds chief information security officer, Tim Brown.
May 19, 2022
In the pandemic, federal, state and local government responses weren't always aligned
00:20:03
The governmental response to the COVID pandemic pulled in many agencies at the federal, state and local levels. But how well did they work together? The intergovernmental response is the topic of the latest study, sought by Congress, from a working group of the National Academy of Public Administration. Its main finding: there's work to do. The Federal Drive got more now from working group co-chair and University of San Francisco professor Richard Callahan.
May 19, 2022
An update on the Army's effort to modernize
00:15:50
The Army is modernizing almost everything. The effort extends from rifles used by individual soldiers to the Army's information systems and software development. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione got an update from the Army's Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Acquisition, Logistics and Technology, Young Bang.
May 19, 2022
GSA tops other agencies in communicating reentry plans to its employees
00:22:27
When the White House added up results from the latest federal employee pulse survey, the General Services Administration saw some positive feedback from its crew. GSA Deputy Administrator Katy Kale tells Federal News Network's Drew Friedman, she's particularly satisfied with the sheer the number of responses GSA got. First she comments on what it's important to have a series of surveys.
May 19, 2022
One Air National Guard trying AI to streamline basic tasks and cut paperwork
00:17:29
Just like innumerable other government agencies, the Air Force runs on paper-based forms that have to be filled out manually, and each one takes time. But "how much" was a difficult question to answer, until the Virginia Air National Guard’s 192nd Wing saw a chance to do things differently. The wing has been experimenting with AI to take some of the repetitive tasks out of all that paperwork. And based on initial tests, the process could save the Air Force 156,000 man hours every year for just one form. Chief Master Sgt. Joe Young has been leading the testing process for the 192nd. He talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
May 18, 2022
White House permitting plan seeks interagency coordination for infrastructure spending
00:15:47
The Biden administration wants to speed up federal permits and environmental reviews for projects under the $1 trillion infrastructure law. The White House permitting action plan includes a Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council. For how the council hope to expedite things, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with the executive director Christine Harada on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
May 18, 2022
Government IT glitches can keep contract bids from being received on time
00:15:43
One thing government contracting shops are sticklers for is receiving bids by the stated deadline. Two days or two seconds late, and would-be contractors are out of luck. That's true even if the government's own IT systems screw up or cause the lateness. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin talked about the latest test case with Smith Pachter McWhorter procurement attorney Joe Petrillo.
May 18, 2022
Agencies saved about $552B by tackling fragmentation, overlap and duplication since 2011
00:16:40
Federal oversight bodies often look for waste, fraud and abuse. But another trio of witches also bedevils the government: Fragmentation, overlap and duplication (FOD). The Government Accountability Office's latest report shows agencies have been able to hack away at FOD, but new instances keep popping up. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got the latest from the GAO's director of strategic issues, Jessica Lucas-Judy.
May 18, 2022
AI contracts have special licensing needs to prevent bias, encourage transparency
00:17:50
Artificial intelligence software isn't like other software, especially when it comes to acquiring and licensing it. The data requirements to ensure lack of bias in AI, and transparency in how it works are not part of standard license agreements. This is all the subject of a study by the School of Business at George Mason University. Study author and senior fellow Benjamin McMartin spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin about some of the warnings.
May 18, 2022
Contractors are eyeing possible passage of a big aid-to-Ukraine bill
00:16:31
The Senate could vote tomorrow on a 40 billion dollar military aid package for Ukraine. It's already passed the House. Whatever happens, it will require contracts and contractors. Joining the Federal Drive with a look inside, the executive vice president for policy at the Professional Services Council, Stephanie Kostro.
May 17, 2022
The Army Corps of Engineers helps landowners know where wetlands begin and end
00:16:25
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has started releasing a series of data sheets for the public. They show the delineations of wetland, a crucial piece of information in land and resource management. Joining the Federal Drive with details about the program, research soil scientist Jacob Berkowitz.
May 17, 2022
Congress's copyright office has its first chief economist
00:17:34
One arm of the government's intellectual property protection machinery has a new position and a new person to fill it. The U.S. Copyright Office, a Congressional branch agency, has appointed its first chief economist. Joining the Federal Drive to explain the connection between copyrights and economics is that economist himself, Dr. Brent Lutes.
May 17, 2022
Is Energy’s decision not to name a political appointee to oversee cyber a mistake?
00:16:51
The White House has three. NSA and US Cyber Command have both a general and one. CISA has one. We're talking about agencies with presidentially appointed, Senate confirmed positions focused on cybersecurity. The Energy Department, on the other hand, decided it didn't need a presidentially appointed or Senate confirmed leader in its Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security and Emergency Response or CESER. In his weekly Reporter's Notebook, executive editor Jason Miller writes about why some say this decision is short sighted and sends the wrong message especially at a time when the energy sector is facing more serious cyber threats than ever before.
May 17, 2022
Air Force missing out on DoD’s colorless money software pilots
00:15:58
Like in the game of monopoly, Defense Department money comes in many colors. Unlike the board game, each color in DoD has a specific, non-interchangeable purpose. When it comes to buying software, that presents a problem, which the Air Force is hoping to fix in next year's budget. That an more in this week's DOD reporters notebook with Federal News Network's Jared Serbu and Scott Maucione.
May 17, 2022
Capitol Hill is a bustling place this week, starting with federal agencies and baby formula
00:15:03
From infant formula to the devastating war in Ukraine, nothing is to big or small for Congressional attention this week. You can throw veterans and Veterans Affairs into the mix. We get the outlook from Bloomberg Government deputy news director Loren Duggan.
May 16, 2022
A call to Defense contractors: Ukraine doesn’t just need weapons – but humanitarian aid too
00:15:59
Congress has okayed billions of dollars in security assistance for Ukraine. But one group thinks the U.S. Defense industry is well-positioned to provide not just weapons – but humanitarian aid too. The needs on the ground range from search and rescue equipment to medical supplies and satellite phones. A collection of Arizona-based industry groups is helping to identify those needs, ask for donations from contractors, and get the supplies where they need to go. Lynndy Smith is chairwoman and co-founder of the West Valley Defense Alliance. She talked about the project with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu.
May 16, 2022
Costly, complex, weaknesses. Not great words for VA's electronic health record project.
00:19:23
Mama never said it would be easy. Veterans Affairs officials knew they were taking on a long and expensive project when, back in 2017, they decided to replace Vista, the electronic health records and management system. The new EHR has proven to be a heavy lift, especially when it comes to a realistic and enforceable schedule. We get the latest report from the VA's deputy inspector general, David Case.
May 16, 2022
1,400 EEOC employees will return to the office, but union negotiations still ongoing
00:15:50
Starting today, 1,400 employees at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are returning to the office. Well, at least one day a week. But with union negotiations still incomplete, the American Federation of Government Employees is taking issue with EEOC’s announcement.
May 16, 2022
House advances bill to boost pay, benefits for TSA employees
00:16:35
A perennial effort to improve workplace conditions at the Transportation Security Administration employees took a major step forward last week. It came on Thursday when the House passed the Rights for the TSA Workforce Act of 2022. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
May 16, 2022
A long-time defense analyst joins the defense industry
00:19:20
For anyone in Washington wanting to understand something in the Defense Department budget, Todd Harrison has been a go-to analyst. Now, after seven years at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, he's leaving to join a defense company. The Federal Drive spoke with him about the move.
May 13, 2022
How COVID-19 impacted staffing at the military’s hospitals and clinics
00:19:06
During the COVID pandemic, staffing the nation’s healthcare facilities has been a challenge pretty much across the board. But the military’s hospitals and clinics faced special circumstances. Military clinicians whose day jobs were at military treatment facilities could be pulled away for other COVID-19 missions with little or no notice. The Defense Department office of inspector general looked into this. 26 out of 30 facilities said staffing problems were their biggest challenge. Andre Brown is Program Director for Military Healthcare and Operations at the DoD IG’s office. He talked about their findings with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu.
May 13, 2022
How the Thrift Investment Board wants to improve service to investors
00:18:59
Few benefits for federal employment match the quality and reliability of the Thrift Savings Plan. Make those contributions over a career and you'll have a heck of a nest egg. Now the people behind the TSP, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, have a new strategic plan for now through 2026. Joining the Federal Drive with highlights, the board's chief operating officer, Suzanne Tosini.
May 13, 2022
Amid ‘grave’ concerns about facility conditions, Navy learned lessons about shipyard overhaul
00:16:13
Navy brass know their shipyards are in rough shape. They plan to spend $21 billion on renovations over the next two decades. But the shipyard improvement program is off to a rocky start. The backlog of needed improvements is growing, not shrinking. Costs are escalating, and in at least one case, facility conditions are getting worse. Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu has details.
May 13, 2022
IRS looks to automate how it processes paper tax returns to tackle its backlog
00:16:38
The IRS singled out its paper workload as one of its biggest setbacks this filing season. In response, the National Taxpayer Advocate recently issued a directive for the IRS to use scanning technology. Options include having tax preparers to use 2D barcode, and optical character recognition. For an update, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with National Taxpayer Advocate Erin Collins.
May 13, 2022
Meet the guy who got fixed NASA's big telescope and made sure it got into space
00:17:32
The James Webb Space Telescope has been sending back mind-bending data since its launch last year. But a few years ago the project was mired in trouble. More than a decade late and billions of dollars over budget. My next came in and got it all back on track. He's the James Webb program manager, and a finalist in this year's Service to America Medals program. Gregory Robinson joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
May 12, 2022
Two agency inspectors general got salaries that busted legal limits on political employee pay
00:20:42
The inspectors general for two intelligence agencies were each overpaid... by tens of thousands of dollars, between 2016 and 2020. That’s according to an internal DoD memo a whistleblower supplied to Empower Oversight, an outside watchdog group. There’s no clear evidence anyone intentionally did anything wrong. But there’s also no evidence the money’s been repaid, or that the matter’s been properly investigated. Jason Foster is founder and president of Empower Oversight. He talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu about what we do and don’t know.
May 12, 2022
If work is going to be done differently, why should work spaces say the same
00:21:23
Yes, federal employees are returning to their offices. No, conditions won't return to normal, whatever that is. At the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, management and union representatives have been trying out different workplace configurations. Here with more, the president of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 1923, Anita Autrey.
May 12, 2022
If work is going to be done differently, why should work spaces say the same
00:21:23
Yes, federal employees are returning to their offices. No, conditions won't return to normal, whatever that is. At the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, management and union representatives have been trying out different workplace configurations. Here with more, the president of the American Federation of Government Employees Local 1923, Anita Autrey.
May 12, 2022
DoD IG says SPACECOM basing decision was legal, large parts of rationale remain redacted
00:16:26
U.S. Space Command is in charge of military operations outside of the earth’s atmosphere. But it needs a headquarters down here on the ground. Exactly where, though, that's sparked a lot of contention. Some lawmakers suspected foul play in the Defense Department favoring Huntsville, Alabama as the new home for the command. Now a DoD Inspector General report weighing in on the legality of the decision. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
May 12, 2022
Russia's actions in Ukraine has spy agencies thinking about how it uses open source intelligence
00:15:55
Intelligence agencies typically work with highly classified information. But more and more, they want to take advantage of publicly available data and other open source intelligence. The Russian attack on Ukraine has spurred spy agencies to improve their use of what they call OSINT. Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday joined the Federal Drive with more.
May 12, 2022
Federal highway safety administration slow to give Congress all its reports
00:17:24
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is mainly concerned with traffic safety. That mission involves rulemaking. Going back a decade, Congress asked for 19 reports and 22 rules from NHTSA, but the agency has been slow getting all of this administration out the door. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got more now from the Director of physical infrastructure at the Government Accountability Office Elizabeth (Biza) Repko.
May 11, 2022
SEC proposes return to 30% awards for corporate whistleblowers
00:20:36
The Securities and Exchange Commission recently proposed changes to its program for dealing with corporate whistleblowers. Since the Dodd-Frank banking legislation, whistleblowers receive up to 30% of penalties the SEC collects when they exceed $1 million. The program was trimmed back during the Trump administration. New proposed rules would return the program to its former state. For one view of what should happen next, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the co-founder and CEO of the banking and markets non-profit advocacy group Better Markets, Dennis Kelleher.
May 11, 2022
Coast Guard's Project Titanic patrols the arctic for hazardous icebergs
00:20:43
Ever since the aftermath of the Titanic disaster, the Coast Guard has been patrolling the North Atlantic for icebergs that could pose hazards. They started with ships, then moved to fixed-wing aircraft. Now, as part of a partnership with the Department of Homeland Security’s Science and Technology directorate, satellites, Matthew Barger is program manager for maritime safety in the DHS Science and Technology directorate, and Commander Marcus Hirschberg is commander of the Coast Guard’s International Ice Patrol. They talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu about what DHS is calling “Project Titanic," on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
May 11, 2022
Results out for third round of pulse surveys, what should agencies do with the data?
00:17:09
Results from the third Office of Management and Budget pulse survey are out. Agencies saw mixed results, but looking at the data is only the first step. Senior leaders have a lot of ways to respond to the feedback and to nip issues in the bud. Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin for the details.
May 11, 2022
COVID spending oversight could teach feds how to track infrastructure funds
00:17:03
Agencies are gearing up to oversee $1 trillion in infrastructure spending. But that’s only a fraction of the $5 trillion overseen by the Pandemic Response Accountability Committee, which is still trying to catch up. The White House recently asked PRAC members to explain how the work of overseeing COVID spending might help with infrastructure spending oversight. For more, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman caught up with the Chairman of the PRAC and the Inspector General of the Justice Department Michael Horowitz. Hear their conversation on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
May 11, 2022
In the relatively small world of government contracting, it pays not to be a jerk
00:18:26
Forget about the idea of six degrees of separation. In the world of government contracting, people are no more than a hop or two away from one another. That's why, with a pressured end-of-the-fiscal-year coming, my next guest says it's a good time to remember a few of the human relations ground rules. Federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen joined the Federal Drive with more.
May 10, 2022
GSA has a new person in charge of the Presidential Innovation Fellows program
00:17:39
You don't have to work decades for the federal government to have an impact. That's one idea behind the Presidential Innovation Fellows program … operated by the General Services Administration. Now the program has a new director. Rebeca Lamadrid joined the Federal Drive.
May 10, 2022
DHS has to account for what it knew about the Capitol riot, but didn't tell anyone
00:17:50
Congress, the Justice Department and the courts continue to deal with the break-in at the Capitol on January 6, 2021. The Homeland Security Department is dealing with issues of its own. A report from its office of inspector general found that the department's Intelligence and Analysis office had threat information, but didn't tell everyone it should have. Joining the Federal Drive with more, DHS Principal Deputy Inspector General Glenn Sklar.
May 10, 2022
DHS has to account for what it knew about the Capitol riot, but didn't tell anyone
00:17:50
Congress, the Justice Department and the courts continue to deal with the break-in at the Capitol on January 6, 2021. The Homeland Security Department is dealing with issues of its own. A report from its office of inspector general found that the department's Intelligence and Analysis office had threat information, but didn't tell everyone it should have. Joining the Federal Drive with more, DHS Principal Deputy Inspector General Glenn Sklar.
May 10, 2022
Navy investigating rash of suicides aboard USS George Washington
00:18:04
Three sailors committed suicide aboard the aircraft carrier USS George Washington last month. All in the space of one week. The rash of deaths seemed to highlight a serious and worsening problem for the military writ large: quality of life and mental health. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive with the latest.
May 10, 2022
DIU is a big help in lowering barriers for non-traditional barriers
00:18:32
By the numbers alone, the Defense Innovation Unit continues to prove its value. But beyond the numbers, DIU officials say they're meeting the goals the Pentagon laid out for them back in 2016, lowering the barriers for non-traditional companies to bring their advanced technology to DoD. Mike Madsen is the deputy director of the Defense Innovation Unit. He tells Federal News Network's Jason Miller about what he considers DIU’s 2021 successes and how they bring value to the warfighters.
May 10, 2022
One Senator thinks a Roe versus Wade overturn could affect the federal workforce
00:17:20
The latest haboob in Washington concerns whether the Supreme Court will overturn the Roe Versus Wade decision. Could that affect the federal workforce? It's not an outlandish question. We get the latest from WTOP Capitol Hill correspondent Mitchell Miller.
May 09, 2022
Your next piece of work-at-home equipment might be virtual reality goggles
00:27:47
If remote working, remote hiring, remote on-boarding are all here to stay, could virtual reality be far behind. That's what people at Accenture are trying to find out. For details, Accenture's executive director for global talent, Allison Horn. And Accenture Federal Services' chief innovation officer, Kyle Michl.
May 09, 2022
VA hired 59,000 employees this fiscal year, but still struggles with workforce shortages
00:17:34
The Veterans Affairs Department hired tens of thousands of employees during this fiscal year. But it still struggles with staff shortages and high turnover. The VA is looking to Congress for legislative fixes, such as higher pay caps for health care staff. It’s also asking lawmakers to make permanent some of its COVID-era hiring flexibilities. For an update, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman.
May 09, 2022
DoD's new version of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification is ready for launch
00:19:03
The Defense Department is getting ready to test out version 2.0 of the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification or CMMC initiative this summer. DoD revamped its approach to securing controlled unclassified information or CUI in February. It's now going through the federal rulemaking process. Federal News Network's Jason Miller joined the Federal Drive with why this test is an important step toward DoD’s goal of launching CMMC in 2023.
May 09, 2022
A look at Navy research into new ways to zap the enemy (Part 4 from Dahlgren)
00:13:30
In Tom Temin's fourth installment of interviews from the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division, Temin explored two futuristic systems. Neither is ready for mounting on the deck of a Navy ship. But both work in laboratory test beds. First Temin talks with Ben Tritt, the chief of Dahlgren's high energy laser weapons systems. And then we'll hear Temin's conversation with Adam Jones, head of advanced hypersonics and guided munitions.
May 09, 2022
What happens when government buyers should negotiate, but don't
00:09:17
When the Defense Department buys high dollar items under negotiated procurement rules, its supposed to negotiate. But the Army awarded a major contract without talking to any of five bidders. GAO dismissed a protest. So the company went to court. There it got interesting. The Federal Drive got details from Smith Pachter McWhorter procurement attorney Joe Petrillo. He talked with Tom Temin.
May 06, 2022
The Air Force contemplates its next moves in digital transformation
00:09:57
Like so many large government organizations, the Air Force is pursuing what it calls digital transformation. But what exactly is that, and what are the challenges to getting there. That question formed the basis for a series of workshops led by the National Academy of Science. Retired Air Force Lieutenant General Mike Hamel is the workshop co-chair. He talked about the details with Tom Temin.
May 06, 2022
DARPA is hard at work on the next generation of hypersonics
00:09:10
Hypersonic projectiles, missiles moving at five times the speed of sound, have become a high priority across the Defense Department. You've got two basic ways of getting projectiles to go that fast. One is the electromagnetic rail gun. The other is the use of hat planners call air breathing engines, and those are the topic of a new effort at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Project manager Andrew Knoedler spoke with Tom Temin.
May 06, 2022
FEMA employees win $16.5M settlement for unpaid overtime
00:07:36
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has a new overtime policy aimed at ensuring employees are compensated for extra work. It follows a major settlement over unpaid overtime claims dating back to 2015. Current and former FEMA employees could be eligible for payment. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
May 06, 2022
OPM’s Ahuja says agencies need to balance speed with ‘doing it right’ for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law hiring
00:09:32
As agencies started implementing return-to-office plans, employee engagement and satisfaction both declined in the 2021 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey. The "FEVS" also saw a drop in employees' response rate last year, in part because of the delayed and shortened version of the survey. The Office of Personnel Management, which distributes "FEVS", plans to get back to the typical spring timeline for 2022. But, OPM Director Kiran Ahuja tells Federal News Network's Drew Friedman there's still a lot options for agencies to use the 2021 data to improve the workplace.
May 06, 2022
'Tis the season to honor those who serve the country with distinction
00:17:28
It's that time of year once again, the season to honor those who serve the country with distinction. The Partnership for Public Service has announced finalists in the Service to America Medals, or Sammies, program. This year there's a special category for Covid-19 response. For more, the president and CEO of the Partnership, Max Stier.
May 05, 2022
What the ones who actually have a say in next year's budget are saying
00:17:26
The Biden administration's budget proposal for 2023 would give magnificent, double-digit increases to some large agencies, notably Veterans Affairs, Health and Human Services, and Commerce. But can Congress deal with it in any meaningful way by October 1? The Federal Drive got analysis from Bloomberg Government congress reporter Jack Fitzpatrick.
May 05, 2022
TRICARE expanding services for new and pregnant parents
00:16:23
The Army is changing its policies for soldiers who are pregnant or just delivered a baby. The move continues the Army’s push to put its people first with better the work-life balance. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive with more.
May 05, 2022
GSA shouldering a lot of the load when it comes to creating a greener government
00:16:49
The General Services Administration is doing much of the work for the Biden administration’s goal to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by federal operations. GSA's Public Buildings Service is furthering energy policy through its procurement and design standards. It’s also spending billions of dollars to modernize land ports of entry with sustainability in mind. For an update, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with Public Buildings Service commissioner, Nina Albert.
May 05, 2022
OPM’s Ahuja says agencies need to balance speed with 'doing it right' for Bipartisan Infrastructure Law hiring
00:11:25
Agencies are ramping up recruitment for 8,000 new federal positions, as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The departments of Transportation, Energy, Commerce, Interior, Agriculture, among others, are all looking to hire for those jobs. To help create better pathways to federal service, the Office of Personnel Management is offering solutions for agencies to get new employees in the door. In an exclusive interview, OPM Director Kiran Ahuja told Federal News Network's Drew Friedman, there's a lot of work to do behind the scenes.
May 04, 2022
Senior Executives Association's outgoing president describes org's changes
00:15:24
Some big changes are underway at the nonprofit group that represents the federal government’s career executives. The Senior Executives Association hired Gregory Brooks to fill a new executive director role. Brooks and a new team of contractors will manager SEA’s day-to-day operations. Meanwhile, Bob Corsi, who’s served as the association’s president for the past two years, is stepping down. Corsi joined Jared Serbu on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to talk about those changes.
May 04, 2022
Drop in international travel during pandemic jeopardized State Dept. passport revenue
00:09:51
The pandemic squashed international travel and that cut the State Department's passport and visa revenues by more than 41%. The fees basically fund the Bureau of Consular Affairs. Congressional auditors said the bureau has a carryover fund, but that's also in jeopardy. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got the details from the Director of International Affairs and Trade issues at the Government Accountability Office, Jason Bair.
May 04, 2022
On the gun line at Naval Surface Warfare Center, Dahlgren: Integrated engagement systems
00:07:41
When a weapon on the gun line of the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division fires, you hear a thud and seconds later see a splash out in the Potomac River. It sounds and looks rough, but in fact each trigger-pull is the subject of detailed measurement and analysis. For the third installment of our series on Dahlgren, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin spoke with the division's integrated engagement systems chief, Daniel Ross.
May 04, 2022
The Defense Industrial Base faces short and long term challenges
00:11:06
The Defense industrial base faces a lot of long-term challenges – many of which have been well documented in studies generated both inside and outside the government. But here-and-now concerns like inflation and the war in Ukraine have introduced a lot of new ones – ones that need to be dealt with this fiscal year. David Berteau is president of the Professional Services Council. He testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee last week on the health of the industrial base, and he joined the Federal Drive to share some of those insights.
May 03, 2022
Two agencies team up to get more women in counterterrorism efforts around the world
00:14:11
A new initiative from the Justice and State Departments looks to support women in leadership roles in counterterrorism. The Engaging Multinational Police Women on Equality and Rights or EMPoWER project, recently conducted its first ever symposium last month in Croatia. To learn more about the program, and some of the advantages of having more women to fight terrorism, Federal News Network's Eric White spoke to Laurie Freeman, Deputy Director for the State Department's Counterterrorism Bureau, and Heather Rauch is the Acting Assistant Director for Europe/Eurasia, with the Justice Department's International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program.
May 03, 2022
For the Navy, putting shells and missiles on target starts with a lot of math and science
00:12:11
The Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division works to ensure the reliability, safety and effectiveness of Navy ship-board weapons. All but a handful of its nearly five thousand federal employees are civilians, aided by several thousand contractors. For the second installment in this week's series looking at Dahlgren activities, Federal News Network's Tom Temin spoke with the division's technical director, also a member of the Senior Executive Service, Dale Sisson.
May 03, 2022
Federal shared services about to get another major update
00:08:27
The federal shared services effort is about to undergo yet another revival. The 20-plus year initiative to get agencies to move to common, back-office systems for financial management and human resources will, once again, try to convince agencies they have the cure to the legacy system disease. In his weekly feature, the Reporter’s Notebook, executive editor Jason Miller writes about why agency leaders believe this time will be different. Jason joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
May 03, 2022
Bipartisan legislators push 5.1% pay raise for all feds
00:08:32
With an aging federal workforce and rising inflation rates, 62 legislators urge the House Committee on Appropriations to add a pay bump to the fiscal 2023 Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill. The latest push for a federal pay raise of 5.1% comes from this year's iteration of the "FAIR" Act, sponsored by Virginia Congressman Gerry Connolly. He tells Federal News Network's Drew Friedman, even though inflation's at 8.5%, his 5.1% is a more realistic goal.
May 03, 2022
Congress is working to establish some order for the 2023 budget process
00:16:28
Members of Congress know the budget process, their primary mission in life, is a mess. But some efforts are brewing that at least some members hope will get the 2023 budget process under control. The Federal Drive got the latest now from Bloomberg Government deputy news director Loren Duggan.
May 02, 2022
This tiny vendor got a big Air Force contract, and defied the odds
00:21:00
The company is called Ditto. Not a household name in defense contracting. But if just got an indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract from the Air Force, worth a potential billion dollars. Here with the Air Force requirement it's hoping to meet, Ditto CEO and co-founder Adam Fish.
May 02, 2022
We check in with the commander of a major Naval research and development installation
00:24:05
Guns of all sizes, someday steel-cutting lasers and hypersonic launchers. None of it get mounted on a Navy ship until it's been tested and vetted by the Naval Surface Warfare Center Dahlgren Division. Recently I traveled to King George County, Virginia, home of the Dahlgren Division, to see what's going on to keep the Navy effective and lethal. In this first of a series of interviews we'll be airing this week, the Federal Drive spoke with the division's commander, Captain Casey Plew.
May 02, 2022
DISA reorganization showing early returns, deputy director says
00:17:52
Six months ago the Defense Information Systems Agency embarked on its second reorganization in about five years. Now DISA, the organization in charge of much of the Defense Department’s IT networks, says it’s seeing results. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione spoke with DISA Deputy Director Christopher Barnhurst.
May 02, 2022
Federal CIO Martorana says agencies adjusting to TMF 2.0 model
00:18:17
The Veterans Affairs Department received a $10.5 million infusion to modernize its identity management platform. Just don't call it an award or a loan. The Federal Chief Information Officer Clare Martorana says it was an investment by the Technology Modernization Fund Board. Martorana and Raylene Yung, the executive director of the TMF program management office at GSA, tell executive editor Jason Miller about why VA’s proposal stood out and how the TMF continues to evolve.
May 02, 2022
An academic challenge nets knowledge and possible future employees for the FDIC
00:18:14
A team of four students at a Virginia university won a challenge competition put on by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Hosted by FDIC's Center for Financial Research, this year's challenge asked students to examine how the pandemic affected banking. Joining the Federal Drive with details, the FDIC's senior economic researcher, Jon Pogach.
Apr 29, 2022
How the pandemic and its aftermath continue to roil the federal workforce
00:17:32
Women federal employees are less likely than men to stick around should a good job offer come from somewhere else. That's one finding of new research by Eagle Hill Consulting. Researchers found the pandemic and the way it scrambled how people work has sparked what they call a great re-evaluation. Here with more, Eagle Hill's CEO, Melissa Jezior.
Apr 29, 2022
The NGA Software Way could improve the agency's development process
00:20:02
The National Geospatial Intelligence Agency is relying more and more on software, and not just trained eyeballs, to analyze satellite imagery and other data. To improve how it develops software, the agency has a new strategy called “The NGA Software Way.” For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday spoke with NGA Chief Technology Officer, Alex Loehr.
Apr 29, 2022
Two years into the pandemic, federal employee engagement drops in 2021 FEVS
00:19:48
2021 was a year of big change or the federal workforce. For one thing, they faced a turbulent of return-to-the-office, with plans varying widely from agency to agency. The result? Employee engagement and job satisfaction both drop off from the relatively high levels of 2020’s. That’s according to the Office of Personnel Management, which yesterday released the annual Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, or “FEVS” for 2021. Joining the Federal Drive with the details, Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman.
Apr 29, 2022
Time to shake off the doldrums, get it in gear, and help out fellow feds
00:17:57
You've still got a couple of days left to sign up for the Feds In Motion 2022 challenge. It's a fundraiser by the Federal Employees Education and Assistance Fund. It only costs $39. For more, and an update on FEEA's good works, acting executive director Robyn Kehoe.
Apr 28, 2022
Officers in the reserve join a legal fight for re-employment rights
00:17:09
A case now being decided by the Supreme Court, known as Torres versus Texas, has a potential big impact on members of the reserves. If states like Texas achieve sovereign immunity, it would jeopardize the re-employment rights reservists have, when returning from duty. The Federal Drive got analysis now from Wiley Rein partner, attorney Scott Felder.
Apr 28, 2022
If the government forces you back to the office, you've got rights
00:18:51
Perhaps on purpose, but the administration has offered only vague guidance on when, or if, or which, federal employees must return to their offices. Mostly the schedule has been made up agency-by-agency. So can they force you back? And if you're in a bargaining unit, is any of this negotiable? We get some insight from federal employment attorney John Mahoney.
Apr 28, 2022
Pentagon shifting Project Maven, marquee artificial intelligence initiative, to NGA
00:18:23
The Pentagon’s marquee artificial intelligence initiative, known as Project Maven, is moving to a new home. It's leaving the Office of the Secretary of Defense. For where it's headed, turn to Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday reporting from the GEOINT conference in Denver.
Apr 28, 2022
House lawmakers seek VA EHR pause, ‘gravely concerned’ for patient safety
00:18:23
System outages and patient safety concerns have plagued the Veterans Affairs Department’s new electronic health record. And not surprisingly, that's leading is leading to more scrutiny. Top members of the House VA Committee are telling the agency to pause future rollouts on the new EHR until these problems can get fixed. Meanwhile, the vendor, Cerner says it’s considering its own technical review of the EHR. It also wants to make sure the system is stable and reliable. For an update, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman.
Apr 28, 2022
Energy Department issues plan to safely and affordably replace old solar panels
00:16:21
Solar panels have a life cycle. The billions of panels covering roofs and once-pristine landscapes and maybe even your office building will all need to be disposed of and replaced at some point. Now the Energy Department has issued an action plan for how to safely and economically handle photovoltaic materials that have worn out. For details, the Energy Department's photovoltaics program manager, Lenny Tinker joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Apr 27, 2022
IRS struggles to process suspended returns with errors and update taxpayers
00:19:52
If citizens can't escape death and taxes, the IRS can't seem to avoid yearly processing problems. Even as the this year's filing season ended, the IRS was dealing with millions of returns from last year, to say nothing of slow call centers and poor in-person service. For the view of the Government Accountability Office, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the Director of Strategic Issues Jessica Lucas-Judy.
Apr 27, 2022
Inspectors general reflect on career, impact of the late Earl Devaney
00:18:33
The community of inspectors general lost one of its leading lights recently with the death of former Interior Department IG Earl Devaney. Devaney also headed up the Recovery, Accountability and Transparency Board in 2009. For more on the meaning of Devaney's career, the National Science Foundation Inspector General Allison Lerner, and the Interior Department IG Mark Lee Greenblatt, joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Apr 27, 2022
Act now if you want help from GSA's assisted acquisition services
00:08:36
The 2022 fiscal year got compressed to six months. To help with their crucial acquisitions, many agencies have already turned to the General Services Administration. Staff at GSA's assisted acquisition services are busy, but it's not too late to get in. For more on the procurement situation, the Federal Drive spoke with federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen.
Apr 26, 2022
The Navy has a bridge all the way to Great Britain, in a manner of speaking
00:10:23
The Navy has three carefully-selected delegates spending three months of learning in London. They're part of a program known as the Percy Hobart Fellowships. It aims to more closely link innovative elements of the private sector with the military. Some 40 other people from the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force will also participate. For more of what's going on, we turn to one of the U.S. Navy participants. Alan Jaeger is director of the Ventura Tech Bridge at the Fathomwerx Lab. That's part of the Naval Surface Warfare Center Port Hueneme Division.
Apr 26, 2022
The IRS has to tighten up its procedures for employee time off
00:11:57
Federal leave and time off policies can get mighty complicated. At the I-RS, both managers and line employees have had trouble sticking to procedures for family and medical leave act leave. And for absence without leave. Enough so that the commissioner asked the Treasury inspector general for tax administration to look into it. For what they found, the director of TIGTA's management and exempt organization business unit, Carl Aley.
Apr 26, 2022
Innovation in federal agencies is hard, but possible with these tips
00:08:42
The first chief innovation officer at the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation left after only a year on the job. Sultan Meghji cited several systemic barriers that frustrated him into leaving. Meghji's comments got executive editor Jason Miller thinking about what it takes to innovate in the federal government. In his weekly feature the reporter's notebook, Jason asked two former federal executives what it takes to be successful. Jason joined the Federal Drive to discuss what he learned.
Apr 26, 2022
Military housing company derelict in duties even after guilty plea, Senate finds
00:09:18
For years, military service members have been raising flags about problems with privatized military housing ranging from lead paint to defrauding the government. Now after Congressional inquires, guilty pleas and promises to make good, a new Senate report finds at least one company is still misleading troops, their families and possibly the government. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive with more.
Apr 26, 2022
On capitol hill, a deepening commitment to keep arms flowing to Ukraine
00:18:55
Ukraine, and keeping aid going to that country, it's one of the few areas of bipartisan agreement on Capitol Hill. Law makers return this week, and that's at the top of the agenda. The Federal Drive got more now from WTOP Capitol Hill Correspondent Mitchell Miller.
Apr 25, 2022
A former Commerce official on the internet policy work yet to be done
00:19:14
The Commerce Department has been dealing with the internet and its implications since at least the mid 1990s. Mainly through an obscure agency known as the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. My next guest worked there for many years, more recently as acting administrator. Evelyn Remaley is now a partner at the law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer.
Apr 25, 2022
How the State Department deals with one of the worse legacies of ground wars
00:18:31
Imagine getting injured or killed by a piece of ordnance months or years after a war has ended. Yet this occurs all-too-frequently around the world thanks to leftover land mines and unexploded shells and bombs. For many years, the State Department's Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement has worked with international partners to reduce this problem. Joining the Federal Drive with a progress report, program director Karen Chandler.
Apr 25, 2022
State Dept. launches new Access Center as part of diversity and inclusion effort
00:17:45
The State Department revving up efforts to promote accessibility, as part of its diversity and inclusion program. Its Bureau of Human Resources opened a new Access Center in 2020, to help employees with disabilities with enabling technology. As employees return to their offices, State sees the Access Center as central to its workplace. For more, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with the Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources, Brian McKeon.
Apr 25, 2022
Agency data leaders see strong tie into federal zero trust security push
00:16:56
We know chief information security officers have job in the White House’s “zero trust” cybersecurity strategy. But what about chief data officers? Turns out they’re more involved than you might think. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Apr 25, 2022
The president's management agenda benefits from being specific
00:16:44
The Biden administration's management agenda, which the White House built out with a lot of detail last week, focuses on just three things. That's a wise approach, according to my next guest. The Federal Drive got perspective from our long-time federal management scene observer, Bob Tobias.
Apr 22, 2022
How the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is shifting its enforcement strategy
00:20:06
You might have noticed. Energy, the climate and infrastructure have become leading topics for the federal government. My next guest says, that's beginning to manifest itself in sort of bellwether agency, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, or FERC. Joining the Federal Drive with what's going on, an energy specialist and partner at the law firm Morgan, Lewis and Bockius, Levi McAllister.
Apr 22, 2022
How to develop the cyber warfare leaders the military needs
00:17:55
The armed services need to expend their numbers of high-ranking cybersecurity and cyber warfare officers. My next guest says the place to do that is at the war colleges, because right now there's not enough educational capacity in the military. Alfredo Rodriguez is senior analyst to the Marine Corps deputy commandant for information, and a retired Army signal lieutenant colonel.
Apr 22, 2022
Senate legislation seeks to expand early-career pipeline for federal service
00:18:26
More federal employees are becoming eligible to retire, but the pipeline to find successor staff is running thin. Now, there’s a Senate bill aiming to add flexibilities for agency heads looking to hire early-career, or even temporary employees. Joining the Federal Drive with the details, Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman.
Apr 22, 2022
DIU opens latest innovation outpost, expanding its presence to the Midwest
00:15:20
The Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit is expanding – again. DIU opened a new office in Chicago yesterday, hoping to connect commercial innovators in the Midwest with military requirements. It’s the fifth regional hub DIU has launched since its beginnings in Silicon Valley seven years ago. Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu has details on the new midwestern hub, and what DoD’s hoping to achieve.
Apr 22, 2022
The Navy faces a lawsuit over other-than-honorable discharges
00:20:18
Two veterans service organizations have sued the Navy over discharge upgrades. At issue are other-than-honorable discharges, how they limit lifetime VA benefits and whether service members can appeal them. The particular case involves a Marine whom attorneys say faced racial discrimination. Joining the Federal Drive with more on the case, an attorney with the Connecticut Veterans Legal Center, Alden Pinkham.
Apr 21, 2022
The ballet known as post award debriefings gets a new tu-tu
00:17:50
After a lot of cogitation, the Defense Department last month finalized revised rules for contract award debriefings, informational sessions where losing contractors can, in theory, find out why they lost. Joining the Federal Drive with the significant changes, Jenner and Block attorney Carla Weiss.
Apr 21, 2022
The Defense Innovation Unit shares what's it's learned about acquisition of prototypes
00:20:30
The Defense Acquisition University and the Defense Innovation Unit have teamed up to offer what you might call an acquisition baptism. It's what they call an immersive course to get procurement people trained in commercial practices for buying goods and services faster. As DIU officials like to put it, at the speed of relevance. Joining the Federal Drive with more about the course to be offered this fall, the Defense Innovation Unit's director of acquisition, Cherissa Tamayori.
Apr 21, 2022
CISA hopes to keep organizations on their toes about software threats
00:16:47
Recent cyber attacks have shown how shoddy software can grind an organization’s operations to a halt. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is trying to raise awareness of software threats, and ways to address them, during April’s Supply Chain Integrity Month. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday, spoke with the acting assistant director for CISA’s National Risk Management Center, Mona Harrington.
Apr 21, 2022
State Dept rainy day fund for passports took hit from COVID-19, may take years to recover
00:16:05
A rainy day fund at the State Department dried up during COVID-19. The Bureau of Consular Affairs is drawing down carryover funds from previous years, and may take years to replenish, even if passports and visa fees fully bounce back from the pandemic. For an update on all of this, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has more.
Apr 21, 2022
NAVSUP can teach a thing or two about small business Defense procurements
00:15:06
The Naval Supply Systems Command keeps machinery and people equipped and ready to go. It has some award winning programs for ensuring small business participation in its procurements. At the recent Sea Air Space Conference, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin caught up with NAVSUP's Director of Small Business Chris Espenshade.
Apr 20, 2022
GAO advises Navy to be balanced as it acquires new unmanned ships
00:19:34
The Navy plans to spend billions to acquire a variety of umanned ships of all sizes, 21 in all over the next five years. The Government Accountability Office advised Navy officials to take a portfolio approach to bring more efficiency and balance to the program. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin heard more from the GAO's director of contracting and national security acquisitions Shelby Oakley.
Apr 20, 2022
USAID's first DEI director starting with demographic data for recruits, promotions
00:20:53
The U.S. Agency for International Development has started up a new office called diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility. And it's hired someone to run that new office. Neneh Diallo joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to share more.
Apr 20, 2022
NIST is asking industry for comments on the next cybersecurity framework
00:20:04
A call for comments from the National Institute for Standards and Technology gives industry a deadline of next week. NIST is looking for reactions to ideas for critical infrastructure cybersecurity, and it could have a big impact on companies doing business with the government. The Federal Drive got more now from the executive vice president for policy at the Professional Services Council, Stephanie Kostro.
Apr 19, 2022
Is USCIS up to the task of processing all of the green cards available?
00:18:23
A green card is a terrible thing to waste. But that's exactly what U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services might be doing. The agency, by most accounts, still hasn't returned to full operating capacity after two years of pandemic. So it is having trouble processing all of the visa numbers available. The Federal Drive got more now from attorney Steven Plastrik of Berry Appleman and Leiden.
Apr 19, 2022
SCuBA gears up agencies to survive the ‘next’ SolarWinds attack
00:18:21
The Secure Cloud Business Applications project, known as SCuBA, taking place at the Homeland Security Department, grew out of the Solarwinds breach from 2020. The idea is for the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency to develop basic cyber standards for cloud services like email and collaboration tools. Vincent Sritapan is the Cyber Quality Service Management Office Section Chief at CISA. He tells executive editor Jason Miller, in an exclusive interview, about the launch of SCuBA and how it could keep civilian agencies breathing during a cyber attack.
Apr 19, 2022
Veterans Affairs takes on a new scam: pension poaching
00:18:32
Deliberately bad advice can help a veteran get pension benefits out of the Veterans Affairs Department. Sometimes the advisors take the money for themselves. Eventually, the veteran will be forced to pay it back. It's called pension poaching, and it's a growing problem. For how the department is trying to stop it, the Federal Drive turned to VA's chief financial officer, Charles Tapp.
Apr 19, 2022
How will new laws pertaining to school curriculum affect military schools?
00:17:31
State and local laws often aren’t on the military’s radar. But, recently the Air Force has gotten vocal about a handful of laws and directives sweeping through the south. Those laws limit some activities transgender children can partake in and limit how sexuality is talked about in schools. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive with what he's found.
Apr 19, 2022
With Congress in recess, it can rest up for the budget battles ahead
00:18:02
Members of Congress are off this week, for Passover, Easter or Ramadan. With any luck they're also thinking about getting after the 2022 budget before they return, and before they turn all their attention to the mid-term elections. We get the outlook from Bloomberg Government deputy news director Loren Duggan.
Apr 18, 2022
Jokes aside, could Congress function if something wiped out a lot of members?
00:26:01
The Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress has been looking at the effectiveness of that branch of government from nearly every angle. Now it's looking at whether Congress could function if a natural or man-made disaster took out large numbers of members. We get more now from the committee chairman, Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.).
Apr 18, 2022
Supply chain assessment identifies 200,000 products ‘of concern’ in fed marketplace
00:18:06
There's some new data on efforts to expose risks in the millions of products the government buys annually. The General Services Administration has identified tens of thousands of products that pose a concern. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Apr 18, 2022
DeJoy: USPS in recovery but ‘uncomfortable changes’ still to come under reform plan
00:18:46
The Postal Service, now a year into a 10-year reform plan, is showing signs of recovery, thanks in part to the Postal Service Reform Act signed into law. USPS is now focused on overhauling its facilities. But Postmaster General Louis DeJoy tells Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman, there's a long way to go. Jory joined the Federal Drive with highlights.
Apr 18, 2022
For fiscal 2023, the Pentagon's troubled relationship with a troubled airplane flies on
00:18:42
The F-35 has become synonymous with all of the problems the 21st century Pentagon deals with. For fiscal 2023, the topline budget calls for buying only 61 new copies instead of the 94 originally planned for. The stealth aircraft continues to have problems with performance and sustainability. Here with some new problems, long-time critic and fellow at the Project on Government Oversight, Dan Grazier.
Apr 15, 2022
For hypersonics, it's time to put the pedal to the metal
00:20:36
No one knows for certain whether Russia used a hypersonic missile against Ukraine. The Russia's leaders lie about everything else. But there's no doubt Russia, like China, is pursuing such weapons. My next guests argue, the U.S. needs to step up its own hypersonics program. Joining the Federal Drive from Purdue University's Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy, director Bonnie Glick, and Senior Research Fellow, Dan DeLaurentis.
Apr 15, 2022
The White House get some honest advice about its zero trust cybersecurity program
00:21:02
The White House recently received some expert advice about its signature cybersecurity initiative. Namely to get every agency to move to zero trust systems architectures. But the group warned the project is at risk of becoming an incomplete experiment. We get highlights now from the chairman of the board of Qualcomm and a longtime member of the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee, Mark McLaughlin.
Apr 15, 2022
House lawmakers aim to tackle improper payments with better data, IT
00:15:37
Trillions of dollars in federal spending can lead to billions of dollars that aren’t paid to the right place, or in the right amount. To address a record-high rate of improper payments, House lawmakers plan to introduce legislation on the issue. Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman has the latest.
Apr 15, 2022
Out of the woods with financial system, Coast Guard can turn attention to industry
00:17:00
The Coast Guard’s rollout of its financial system modernization has been two decades in the making. The Coast Guard is now on a shared system with other Homeland Security agencies such as the Transportation Security Administration. It’s a major lift for the Coast Guard with a fair share of challenges. But shows the service’s drive to embrace more cloud and standardized IT systems. Federal News Network’s Amelia Brust has more.
Apr 15, 2022
The Air Force launches two new cybersecurity courses available across the Defense Department
00:17:12
Two new cybersecurity courses developed by the Air Force are available to anyone in the Defense Department. We get the details from the director of the DC3 Cyber Training Academy, Casey Szyper.
Apr 14, 2022
How West Point is likely to deal with drug-overdosing cadets
00:18:20
Spring break might over, but the after effects linger for the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Five cadets on spring break in Florida were hospitalized after ingesting what appeared to be fentanyl-laced cocaine. Here to explain the legal ramifications, the managing partner of the law firm Tully Rinckey, Sean Timmons.
Apr 14, 2022
How telehealth became a proven commodity for Medicare recipients
00:18:38
A new and impressive statistic has emerged from the pandemic. Everyone knew that remote medical visits, or telehealth, grew when people could not or were afraid to visit health providers in person. Now the Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General has quantified it for one large section of the population. Some 28 million people on Medicare used telehealth in the first year of the pandemic. Here with more of what they found and why it's important, assistant IG Erin Bliss.
Apr 14, 2022
New campaign looks to give voice to victims of sexual assault in the military community
00:18:02
The Defense Department is implementing dozens of reforms to help reduce sexual assault and harassment, but some say they don’t go far enough. A new campaign started up this month called Red, White and Bruised. It asks women in the military community to share their stories of assault and abuse. The campaign is also making specific requests like the resignation of commanders who fail to investigate incidents. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione spoke with Never Alone Advocacy founder Amy Braley Franck, and executive director of Combat Sexual Assault, Lindsay Knapp.
Apr 14, 2022
Intel agencies advance artificial intelligence in patches, struggle with big breakthroughs
00:16:36
Intelligence agencies are seeing some success using automation and machine learning for narrow applications. But officials say a more “integrated” approach is needed to transform spy tradecraft using artificial intelligence. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Apr 14, 2022
Applying a systematic leadership framework to the Presidency
00:17:51
When president-elect John F. Kennedy asked Bob McNamara, then-president of Ford Motor Company, to join his cabinet, McNamara said that he didn't know anything about government. JFK is said to have replied, "well, we can both learn on the job. I don't know how to be President." And so it's been ever since, according to my next guest. Dr. Michael Siegel is senior education specialist at the Federal Judicial Center and adjunct professor at two universities. He's also written a book: The President as Leader. And he joins the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to discuss it.
Apr 13, 2022
GAO examines major trends in government
00:20:35
The Government Accountability Office often gets way down in the weeds for its oversight work. Who said what, when. Chapter and verse on what part of the federal acquisition regulation wasn't followed. Dollars misspent using a federal credit card. Month-by-month timelines for wobbly programs. But GAO also takes in the big picture. A case in point is its latest study on the big trends that will affect the government. The managing director for strategic planning and external liaison, Steve Sanford, joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to share more.
Apr 13, 2022
Workforce, customer experience initiatives in OMB's PMA action plan
00:30:09
The President's Management Agenda last week went from idea to action plan, complete with strategy leaders and metrics for success. For some of the rationale behind the latest updates, and what they mean for you, Deputy Director of the Office of Management and Budget Jason Miller joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Apr 13, 2022
GSA rises to the occasion with ASCEND, its new cloud acquisition vehicle
00:18:44
The only thing more numerous than the number of commercial cloud services providers, is the number of ways to buy from them. Now the General Services Administration has dubbed a blanket purchasing agreement for clouds services with the name Ascend. Is GSA rising to the occasion? The Federal Drive got one view from federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen
Apr 12, 2022
An old hand at federal budgeting analyzes what the 2023 proposal really says
00:19:44
Nearly every agency would get more money in 2023 under the Biden administration's topline request. But it also shows the increasing pressure on so-called discretionary spending as mandatory spending expands. As part of our on-going analysis of the skinny budget, the Federal Drive turned to former federal budget official, now the managing director of Grant Thornton Public Sector, Doug Criscitello.
Apr 12, 2022
Departing DoD software boss says success or failure boils down to leadership
00:18:26
Jason Weiss, DoD’s first-ever chief software officer, is stepping down at the end of this week. The CSO position is the department’s first attempt to put a single official in charge of everything from mainframe COBOL, to DevSecOps pipelines, to classified weapons systems. Weiss talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu about some of his takeaways from his tour of duty at DoD.
Apr 12, 2022
Expect more shifts in IT procurement language to reflect sustainability goals
00:16:11
The White House’s climate goal to reach a net-zero carbon emissions economy by 2050 hinges in part on federal government’s ability use *its* buying power has a lever. Acquisition regulation language is already changing to reflect this policy priority, including the buying of information technology. Federal News Network digital editor Amelia Brust has more.
Apr 12, 2022
The worsening Ukraine situation causes Congress to re-examine the defense budget
00:16:51
Congress is on recess this week, which may be a good thing with Covid making its ugly appearance in both chambers. That's why a $10 billion Covid package will be high on the agenda when members return. The Federal Drive got the latest from WTOP Capitol Hill Correspondent Mitchell Miller.
Apr 11, 2022
A new look at how agencies use contractors in the act of rulemaking
00:19:43
Federal contractors, like companies throughout the economy, must live under the regulatory regimes established by federal agencies. But what about the use of contractors in the act of rulemaking itself. An activity you might have thought was inherently governmental. Not so fast. A study done for the Administrative Conference of the United States shows how much agencies do use contractors for this purpose. The Federal Drive got more now from study co-author and University of Virginia professor Rachel Augustine Potter.
Apr 11, 2022
Questions on whether federal rulemaking takes in comments from everyone affected
00:20:04
Seeking comments from those affected, it's a foundation stone of U.S. federal rulemaking. And regulated parties, companies, industries, associations, they're never shy about commenting. But what about those whom rules are supposed to benefit? Our next guest says the evidence shows, that group is often silent. And has a prescription for widening participation in rulemaking. She's a professor at New York University and former administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Sally Katzen.
Apr 11, 2022
Federal efforts on critical infrastructure cybersecurity come under White House review
00:15:06
The White House is reviewing how agencies work with critical infrastructure companies on cybersecurity. The new national cyber director’s office is leading the study. Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday has the story.
Apr 11, 2022
Navy looking to save on energy costs in data centers
00:17:09
The Navy is looking for ways to save money on high-energy consuming buildings. That includes data centers, with their air conditioning demands. Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command Southwest just implemented energy saving measures in a datacenter on Naval Base Coronado. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione gets the details from NAVFAC mechanical engineer Doug Macurda.
Apr 11, 2022
The DEA reopens its museum after a two year renovation
00:18:45
In a city filled with museums large and small, this one is a standout. After a two year hiatus for renovation, the Drug Enforcement Administration museum has reopened its doors to the public. Joining the Federal Drive with some of the highlights, museum director Jan McKay.
Apr 08, 2022
The State Department prepares for its first cohort of paid interns
00:18:31
If you want to help change the world, the State Department isn't a bad place to start. And if you want to get a foot in the door at the State Department, a paid internship isn't a bad way to go. This fall, the State Department launches a new paid student internship program. Here with the details, the director of recruitment in State's Bureau of Global Talent Management, Mica Schweitzer-Bluhm.
Apr 08, 2022
A new challenge to automate one of the most tedious jobs in government
00:19:48
A lot of the data the government produces needs to be rated, safe to distribute, controlled but unclassified, or maybe secret or classified. That's simplifying this huge but never-ending task. Now Defense Department has launched a challenge prize program to develop an artificial intelligence approach to automating this tedious task. Joining the Federal Drive with details, the acquisition division manager in the Philadelphia Division of the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Doris Tung.
Apr 08, 2022
OMB sets workforce, customer experience targets for agency teams carrying out PMA goals
00:16:20
The Biden administration is fine-tuning its management vision for the government. The Office of Management and Budget is setting targets for agencies to deliver a higher standard of customer service to the public. That’s all under the President’s Management Agenda, which is being implemented through several interagency teams. For what OMB is saying, here's Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman.
Apr 08, 2022
SSA to open offices to the public as agency staffing issues continue
00:16:10
Employees at the Social Security Administration will see customers face to face for the first time in two years. Reopening doors to the public comes as the agency faces staffing shortages and a troublesome phone system, which combine to cause service delays. Joining the Federal Drive with more is Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman.
Apr 08, 2022
Now a special security publication for the bulk of most of the data agencies worry about
00:10:22
The federal government produces nothing so much as data. Mountains of data every minute. Much of this information is in the form of controlled but unclassified information, known as CUI. Now the National Institute of Standards and Technology has published a special guide to protecting CUI. Joining the Federal Drive with every data owner needs to know, the Acting Manager of NIST's Security Engineering and Risk Management Group, Vicky Pillitteri.
Apr 07, 2022
The head of federal at IBM has a multi-sided view of federal digital transformation
00:09:47
IBM federal has been many things over the years. Lately it's been headed by a man with a unique perspective. An army career officer, then chief information officer of the Navy and of the Defense Department, Terry Halvorsen has seen IT investment and digital transformation from several angles. The Federal Drive caught up with him at the Sea Air Space conference this week.
Apr 07, 2022
The Coast Guard commandant-nominee on the arctic and bumping into the Russians
00:08:02
She's had assignments all over the world and ashore for the Coast Guard. Now Vice Commandant Admiral Linda Fagan has been tapped by the White House to succeed Commandant Karl Schultz, who retires in June. Shortly before the announcement, the Federal Drive caught up with Fagan at the Sea Air Space Conference, where we discussed, among other things, the critical Arctic.
Apr 07, 2022
White House reviewing agency zero trust cybersecurity plans
00:10:02
The White House has set a goal to transform federal cybersecurity over the next few years through a “zero trust” approach. Stop us if you've heard of zero trust. Agencies have just delivered their initial plans to the Office of Management and Budget. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Apr 07, 2022
Navy looking to the cloud for email and productivity services
00:09:13
The Navy is well on its way to email and productivity services hosted in the commercial cloud. The Marine Corps is already there. The more of the sea services’ IT offerings migrate from their own data centers to commercial environments, the greater the implications for their tech workforces. Aaron Weis is the Department of the Navy’s CIO, and Jennifer Edgin is the Marine Corps’ Assistant Deputy Commandant for Information. At this week’s Navy League Sea Air Space conference, they talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu about the workforce aspect of network modernization.
Apr 07, 2022
Reshoring supply chains and other top government trends for 2022
00:22:06
The federal government is so big it's hard to get your arms around. But the Deloitte Center for Government Insights has given it a try. Its latest Government Trends for 2022 observations are worth reading. Joining me with a few of them, the center's executive director, Bill Eggers.
Apr 06, 2022
How Operation Warp Speed led to a vaccine
00:18:54
As the federal health apparatus contemplates whether a second COVID-19 booster shot is a good idea, it's good to recall the national effort that resulted in vaccines in the first place. We get a look back from the former Health and Human Services deputy chief of staff who oversaw Operation Warp Speed, Paul Mango.
Apr 06, 2022
Meet the Navy's top oceanic and atmospheric expert
00:18:58
Talk about wearing lots of hats: commander of Naval meteorology and oceanography. Navigator of the Navy. Hydrographer of the Navy. And that's not all. At the Sea Air Space conference this week, I caught up with Navy Rear Adm.Ron Piret.
Apr 06, 2022
House Democrats tell USPS to ‘go back to the drawing board’ on electric vehicle cost analysis
00:15:11
The Postal Service, under pressure from Congress and the Biden administration, is doubling its initial order for electric vehicles as part of its next-generation delivery vehicle fleet. But House and Senate Democrats say USPS is setting the bar too low on electrifying its delivery fleet. Lawmakers propose making electric vehicles most of the new fleet, and they'll pay. Postal officials say it's all more than what USPS can afford on its own. Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has the latest.
Apr 06, 2022
Checking in on the state of the Coast Guard
00:13:21
It has a name but no keel yet, the Coast Guard's next polar security cutter. Shipbuilding is but one issue the Coast Guard is dealing with. At this week's Sea Air Space conference, the Federal Drive caught up with the Coast Guard commandant, Karl Schultz who talked about a range of issues, starting with the war in Europe.
Apr 05, 2022
Treasury joins the growing ranks of agencies with IT working capital funds
00:07:52
Federal civilian agencies asked for a record 65 billion dollars for technology in fiscal 2023. Most of them would get a big boost in IT spending. In his weekly Reporter's Notebook, Federal News Network's Jason Miller dug deep into the budget request to find some of the trends in IT spending behind those raw numbers. Jason joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to discuss.
Apr 05, 2022
What the 2023 fiscal budget will look like for contractors
00:13:16
Now that they've had a week or so to digest it, contractors are starting to understand what the 2023 budget proposal by the Biden administration is starting to look like.  Federal Drive with Tom Temin   got one analysis from a man who has studied them for decades. The President and CEO of the Professional Services Council David Berteau.
Apr 05, 2022
Army’s 2023 budget will remain relatively flat, temporarily shrink end strength
00:07:27
The Biden administration has asked for more Defense Department money in its 2023 request. But is it really more, more buying power, with inflation running so high? That's what Republicans in Congress are asking in pointed letters to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. Federal News Network's Scott Maucione had the latest on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Apr 05, 2022
FAR Council finalizes more stringent procurement rules under Buy American Act
00:13:11
Earlier this month the Federal Acquisition Regulation Council finalized new, more stringent rules for U.S. content in what agencies buy. But the whole regime is not quite as strict as it seems at first glance. For what it means to contracting officers and contractors, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to a partner and the head of contracts group at the law firm Miller and Chevalier, Jason Workmaster.
Apr 05, 2022
An impending long recess will force a lot of action in Congress this week
00:08:55
From a supreme court confirmation vote to Russian misbehavior, the House and Senate have a lot to do in the coming week. And there's considerable time pressure to get it done. The Federal Drive got the outlook from Bloomberg Government deputy news director, Loren Duggan.
Apr 04, 2022
A critical Census Bureau program is in trouble, and how it might be fixed
00:09:48
The Census Bureau might be best known for the every-ten-year count. But its American Community Survey is also a vital instrument for planners and researchers throughout the United States. The ACS is in trouble thanks in part to declining response rates and the pandemic. With why this matters and how the Commerce Department can shore up the ACS, the Federal Drive turned to George Washington University research professor and co-author of a recent call to action, Dr. Andrew Reamer.
Apr 04, 2022
Pandemic waste is enough to make a grown man cry
00:13:23
Significant shortcomings. That's the word the Government Accountability Office is using to describe how pandemic relief agencies applied their financial controls. The government spent trillions of dollars. No one knows how many went out has improper payments. Now GAO has a long list of recommendations for Congress. Joining the Federal Drive with the rundown, Comptroller General Gene Dodaro.
Apr 04, 2022
TSP participants can save longer under Secure Act 2.0
00:08:03
If you participate in Thrift Savings Plan, heads up. Congress is tinkering with the system in a way that's likely to change your decision on how and when you retire. The House passed legislation that pushes out the age at which people must make their required minimum distribution age. Joining the Federal Drive with more, Federal News Network’s Drew Friedman.
Apr 04, 2022
AFGE confirms 600 COVID-19 deaths, stresses safety in office reentry plans
00:08:21
Office reentry plans for federal employees are starting to gel. Among other, the Commerce and Housing and Urban Development departments plan on opening the doors April 25. Meanwhile House and Senate members are pressing the administration for a faster return. For an update on the latest, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has more.
Apr 04, 2022
Guess what costs $200 billion and requires 131 million hours?
00:17:23
The Biden administration exceeded the record of its two predecessors in one respect. Namely, the number and estimated costs of the regulations issued in the first year. That's according to a tally made by my next guest. He's a senior regulatory policy analyst at the right-leaning American Action Forum, Dan Goldbeck.
Apr 01, 2022
Whatever happened to those horseback mounted Border Patrol agents?
00:15:52
Remember way back last September, horse-mounted Border Patrol Agents were accused of whipping border crossers. The Biden administration expressed horror and launched an investigation through the Border Patrol Office of Professional Responsibility. If there was a report, it never came out. Now the National Police Associated has launched a freedom of information act request on everything connected with the incident. More now from spokeswoman Betsy Smith.
Apr 01, 2022
This innovator tilted at the bureaucratic windmill, and had the same results as Don Quixote.
00:20:23
The U.S. financial system and the way it's regulated, are fast moving to obsolescence. And the government is unwilling and unable to adopt the technologies to modernize them. That's according to my next guest. He spent more than three years trying, as the first chief innovation officer at the FDIC. Sultan Meghji left the agency last month, and joined the Federal Drive with why.
Apr 01, 2022
The National Science Foundation launches a brand new directorate with ambitious goals
00:24:17
The National Science Foundation has established a new directorate, the first new one in thirty years. It's called the Technology, Innovation and Partnerships, or TIP, directorate. For what it's all about, here's NSF director Dr. Sethuraman Panchanathan and the NSF assistant director for technology, innovation and partnerships, Dr. Erwin Gianchandani.
Apr 01, 2022
White House proposes major pay raise for TSA screening workforce in 2023
00:17:08
The White House’s 2023 budget proposal includes a big pay raise for employees at the Transportation Security Administration. It’s part of a long-running effort by unions and some members of Congress to secure better pay for TSA’s frontline workforce. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Apr 01, 2022
Air Force pilot shortage may take decades to fix, but service is making headway
00:17:10
The Air Force has been struggling to hang on to its pilots. The shortage reached 2,000 airmen at one point. The service says it's making headway, but it may be decades before the issue is resolved. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione spoke about it with the Air Force Director of Training and Readiness Operations. Major General Albert Miller.
Apr 01, 2022
Federal contracting glides on with contractors untroubled by political breezes
00:18:25
Federal contractors have high confidence for the future of their businesses, especially if they're selling cybersecurity services and anything with the word infrastructure in it. That's according to a new index, which purports to be the first of its kind. For how they developed it and what it says, the Federal Drive turned to Alan Chvotkin, a partner at the law firm Nichols Liu and a co-author of the study.
Mar 31, 2022
If Congress can harmonize two big bills, you might see progress in cybersecurity
00:20:14
The House and Senate are working to reconcile two bills that would in part move along the cause of cybersecurity in the United States. Both bills, the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act and the America Competes Act, passed the Senate and House respectively. For some of the good potential fallout, the Federal Drive turned to the senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, retired Rear Admiral Mark Montgomery.
Mar 31, 2022
The Housing and Urban Development IG lays out its new 4-year strategy
00:23:16
To ride herd on a federal department, you need a plan. In the case of the Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General, a five year strategic plan. Not surprisingly, it emphasizes concentrating oversight on the high-risk and mission critical areas. For a more in depth look, the IG herself, Rae Oliver Davis.
Mar 31, 2022
DoD Cloud Exchange: Renata Spinks on USMC’s acceleration to the cloud
00:18:07
The Marine Corps has come a long way toward rationalizing its IT holdings into a consolidated enterprise network, a major precursor to moving to the cloud. And to start making those migrations at scale, the service is creating a new task force structure to guide things along, and remove barriers. For more, Federal News Network's Jared Serbu spoke with the Marine Corps’ assistant director for C4I and chief information security officer, Renata Spinks.
Mar 31, 2022
Why GSA just made Polaris a no-win situation for many small firms
00:16:22
A week after the General Services Administration released the first two solicitations for the much anticipated Polaris small business contract vehicle, the first of what could be many protests landed at the Government Accountability Office. GSA made a last minute change to the solicitation requirements. That's causing heartburn among many small businesses planning to bid. The vehicle potential 10 year life has a $10 billion ceiling. In his weekly reporter's notebook, executive editor Jason Miller writes about why GSA's change, about what's required from mentor-protégé joint ventures, is causing so much concern.
Mar 31, 2022
Biden brings back plans to move FBI headquarters to suburbs in 2023 budget request
00:15:48
The White House is dusting off plans to move the FBI out of downtown Washington, D.C. In its latest budget request the Biden administration is calling on the FBI to move its headquarters to suburban Maryland or Virginia. The idea’s been around since 2014 but was scrapped by the Trump administration, which proposed building a new FBI headquarters on the site of the existing one in downtown D.C. Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman had the latest on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 30, 2022
Losing bidder claims Procurement Integrity Act violation in Navy software license award
00:17:31
A simple competition for software licenses ended up in court after the losing bidder claimed a Procurement Integrity Act violation. At issue was a Navy-run competition to supply software licenses over five years under a blanket purchase agreement. Simple, but not trivial, with an estimated ceiling of $2.5 billion. Smith Pachter McWhorter procurement attorney Joe Petrillo filled in the Federal Drive with Tom Temin on the details.
Mar 30, 2022
GAO finds flaw in national debt electronic tracking system
00:19:23
Somehow the national debt has managed to reach $28 trillion. But, where is it? It's in a set of electronic schedules maintained by the Treasury Department's Bureau of the Fiscal Service. In auditing the government's financial statements for 2021, the Government Accountability Office found a flaw: a deficiency in the information system controls. With what it is and the implications, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the GAO's director of financial management and assurance, Cheryl Clark.
Mar 30, 2022
VA helps women-owned small businesses get a slice of the federal contracting pie
00:20:08
The number of women veterans has been growing steadily over the years and so has the number of women veteran entrepreneurs. The Department of Veterans Affairs helps these small companies get a piece of the federal contracting business with a new, 14-week course. For details, the director of woman veteran small business initiatives, Michelle Gardner-Ince, spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 30, 2022
White House 2023 budget request prioritizes more staff for CISA, funding for zero trust security measures
00:15:45
The White House’s 2023 budget request includes a big increase for cybersecurity. The Biden administration is pushing zero trust.. and a bigger workforce for the main cyber agency. Federal News Network's Justin Doubleday joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin for the latest.
Mar 30, 2022
This pending agency modernizing legislation is a lot less than it seems
00:18:38
A bill in the Senate would, with bipartisan backing, order agencies to modernize their information technology. But it wouldn't come with any funds dedicated to doing so. So would it amount to anything? We get some insight from federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen.
Mar 29, 2022
DARPA's now testing a new method to identify service members at risk of suicide
00:29:13
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, DARPA, has joined the effort to prevent suicides among active duty service members. The numbers are grim, 30,000 in the last 20 years. The DARPA approach seeks to prevent suicide by working what you might call upstream from conscious thoughts. It's called the Neural Evidence Aggregation Tool, or NEAT. Joining the Federal Drive with details, the program manager in DARPA's defense sciences group, Dr. Greg Witkop.
Mar 29, 2022
Executive branch agencies are just glomming onto a hiring practice this Congressional bureau has been using for years
00:22:49
Hiring people by their demonstrated capabilities, instead of what they boast on their resumes. It's catching on at executive branch agencies. It even has a name: Subject-Matter Expert Qualification Assessment. Turns out, the Government Publishing Office has been hiring people this way for four years, and with what it considers great success. Joining the Federal Drive with more, the GPO's chief human capital officer, Dan Mielke.
Mar 29, 2022
For feds, White House 2023 budget request is more than just the 4.6% pay raise
00:17:50
The White House’s fiscal 2023 budget request sent to Congress today seeks across the board increases in discretionary spending for almost every agency. But the real message in this annual exercise isn’t the funding request, which most observers will tell you is dead on arrival in on Capitol Hill. The Biden administration is continuing the long-term effort to rebuild, reskill and revamp the federal workforce. Federal News Network's executive editor Jason Miller joined the Federal Drive with highlights.
Mar 29, 2022
The swirling sound you hear is Congress going 'round and 'round on some old ideas
00:17:57
The great flywheel of appropriations gets a big shove today with release of the administration's 2023 budget request, six months before fiscal 2023 actually starts. That's not all in the way of spending Congress will be thinking about, as the Federal Drive heard from WTOP capitol hill correspondent Mitchell Miller.
Mar 28, 2022
How one big State Department bureau is updating its approach to cybersecurity
00:19:02
A crucial part of the State Department has a new head of a crucial function, at a time of high world tension. Erica Jaume is chief of the IT security and governance branch of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Mar 28, 2022
If it takes up land and someone grows something edible, as far as USDA is concerned, it's a farm
00:18:30
You might not think of farm and urban in the same sentence. But the Agriculture Department does. In fact there's a new federal advisory committee designed to help the department better understand the needs of urban farmers. Joining the Federal Drive with more, chief of USDA's natural resources conservation service, Terry Crosby.
Mar 28, 2022
On April 4, say goodbye to DUNS and hello to UEI
00:17:31
The General Services Administration will finally pull the plug on the use of Dun and Bradstreet numbers and fully move to a brand new identifier for contractors, called the Unique Entity Identifier or UEI. Memi Whitehead, the deputy assistant commissioner of GSA’s Integrated Award Environment, tells executive editor Jason Miller about what this six-year effort will mean for agencies and contractors alike.
Mar 28, 2022
EPA adopts ‘hybrid workplace’ model in office reentry plans set for May
00:17:49
The Environmental Protection Agency will bring employees back to the office starting in May. The American Federation of Government Employees worked a deal for its members gradually come over the course of four pay periods. EPA is also promising routine telework. For details, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with Bethany Dreyfus, the president of AFGE Local 1236, and with Joyce Howell, AFGE Council 238’s chief negotiator for the future of work, whom you hear first.
Mar 28, 2022
The perks of being a wallflower and the rush to get everyone back in the office
00:19:33
A large survey sponsored by Slack, a intra-company messaging application, raises the question: Is it really a good goal for organizations to get everyone back in the office? And a second question: Would companies and government agencies do better to educate managers on how to better deal with a workforce that's scattered -- some home, some in the office? To find out, Federal Drive host Tom Temin spoke with FNN's resident workplace expert, Bob Tobias.
Mar 25, 2022
What good is all of the criminal justice data put out by the Justice Department if no one uses it?
00:20:47
Each year, the Justice Department churns out lots of data about criminal justice. Recently it launched an initiative to prod state and local governments to use the data more effectively to make policy and budget decisions. To find out how it works, Federal Drive host Tom Temin spoke with the acting deputy director for policy at the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Ruby Qazilbash.
Mar 25, 2022
A lot of what USAID does relies on this geographer
00:27:41
Geographic information is crucial to agency missions almost everywhere. That's especially true for the U.S. Agency for International Development. The agency operates throughout the world. For how geo and geo information systems underlie development decisions, Federal Drive host Tom Temin spoke with USAID's chief geographer, Carrie Stokes.
Mar 25, 2022
DoD takes on suicide with monumental independent committee
00:15:44
As the military wrestles with some of its highest suicide rates on record, the Defense Department is undertaking a landmark look into mental health, suicide prevention and response. The Pentagon announced Tuesday the establishment of the Suicide Prevention and Response Independent Review Committee (SPRIRC) – a commission that will use third-party experts to critique the military’s response to mental health.
Mar 25, 2022
White House ‘driving fast’ to issue software security guidance for agencies
00:16:21
Nearly a year after President Joe Biden signed off on an expansive cybersecurity executive order, officials are grappling with the difficult task of taking secure software standards and applying them to the vast array of software agencies buy. The Office of Management and Budget plans on releasing new secure software guidance for agencies within the next eight to 12 weeks, according to Chris DeRusha, federal chief information security officer. The guidance is based on a “Secure Software Development Framework” (SSDF), as well as “Software Supply Chain Security Guidance” released by the National Institute of Standards and Technology in February.
Mar 25, 2022
An old and large NASA center is about to get an update
00:23:05
Goddard Space Flight Center, one of NASA's original sites, is about to get a major nip and tuck. This after NASA's office of strategic infrastructure said yes to a new master plan for Goddard. For one thing, Goddard plans to cut its building square footage by 25%. Federal Drive host Tom Temin talked about the master plan with Goddard's associate center director, Ray Rubilotta.
Mar 24, 2022
The infrastructure bill includes money for reducing infrastructure.
00:19:40
When you think infrastructure, you probably think of new and replacement. But the big bill enacted late last year also has money for removing infrastructure. Specifically, river dams. For how and why this is the case, Federal Drive host Tom Temin spoke with Tom Kieran, the president and CEO of the non-profit American Rivers.
Mar 24, 2022
VA brings employees back to the office, but envisions hybrid workplace for eligible staff
00:17:19
The Veterans Affairs Department is the latest agency to bring its workforce back to the office, but is envisioning a hybrid workplace in the coming months to improve recruitment and retention. Deputy VA Secretary Donald Remy said Tuesday that the VA brought non-bargaining unit employees back to the office last week. The agency, he added, expects bargaining unit employees to return to the office by May.
Mar 24, 2022
What does it take for agencies to get off GAO's High Risk List?
00:19:08
Good behavior can get a con out of prison. Good behavior can also get your program off the Government Accountability Office's never-ending list of high-risk federal programs. In fact, the GAO just issued guidance on how get off the list. For highlights, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the GAO's director of strategic issues, Michelle Sager.
Mar 23, 2022
Senate confirmation process dragging on longer with every administration
00:20:25
Presidents make sure their and their party's policies are carried out in large measure by whom they appoint. Each time, though, it seems like the confirmation process goes slower and slower. For a look at how things stand now for the Biden administration, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to someone who counts these things. Anne Joseph O'Connell is a Stanford Law School professor and a public member of the Administrative Conference of the United States.
Mar 23, 2022
GSA wants to cast wider net for federal building architects
00:18:11
Before it can hire contractors to build or renovate federal buildings, the General Services Administration's Public Buildings Service has to engage architects. Over the years, some of the world's top architects have designed federal buildings. Now GSA wants to ensure diversity in its roster of architects. It's inked a memorandum of understanding with the National Organization of Minority Architects. The Commissioner of the Public Buildings Service Nina Albert shared more details on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 23, 2022
Contractors ponder the short fiscal year and the new money for Ukraine
00:18:56
The procurement environment is a little confusing at the moment. Appropriations came through with only a half a year to obligate them. The 2023 budget schedule is foggy. And inflation overlays the buying power of every dollar. For what contractors are, or should be thinking about, the Federal Drive turned to the executive vice president for policy at the Professional Services Council, Stephanie Kostro.
Mar 22, 2022
There's a lot of new you need to know about the security clearance scene
00:22:48
Security clearances, how to get them, what you can do with them, is an ever-chancing topic. The last couple of years have brought quite a few changes, especially since the machinery moved from the Office of Personnel Management to the Defense Department. Here with an update, two attorneys from the federal employee focused law firm Kalijarvi, Chuzi, Newman and Fitch, managing partner Elaine Fitch and partner Mary Kuntz.
Mar 22, 2022
A new resource for federal career advancement, available only to feds.
00:16:55
Federal employees, and federal employees only, have a new place to go for information on leadership development and career advancement. A whole series of seminars now lives on a special section of MAX.gov. Joining the Federal Drive with details, from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Kim Wittenberg.
Mar 22, 2022
2022 spending bill fills holes in DoD’s long-underfunded facility maintenance budgets
00:17:19
The 2022 appropriations enacted last week give the Defense Department some extra bread for facilities maintenance and repair. More than $1 billion more. Plus, U.S. Space Force ponders a digital approach to assessing service members fitness. those stories ad more in this week's DOD Reporters Notebook with Scott Maucione and Jared Serbu.
Mar 22, 2022
AFERM looks to provide guidance on enterprise risk management
00:16:33
It’s been almost six years since agencies were told by the Office of Management and Budget to develop an enterprise approach to risk management. Some agencies are more successful than others. The Association for Federal Enterprise Risk Management took the opportunity to provide the first of several helpful guides as ERM becomes more important to agencies. For more, Federal News Network's Jason Miller spoke to the president of the Association for Risk Management, Daniella Datskovska is the president of the Association for Federal Enterprise Risk Management.
Mar 22, 2022
Ukraine has sped up how Congress is thinking about China
00:17:56
The House of Representatives is taking what amounts to spring break for politicians. But the Senate is in town working on legislation to deal with China, and closing in on the Supreme Court nomination. The Federal Drive got the look-ahead from Bloomberg Government deputy news director Loren Duggan.
Mar 21, 2022
Veterans and their supports push for burn pit related relief
00:18:06
Burn pits, they're the agent orange of the most recent generation of veterans. Veterans who were exposed to the open junk incinerators in Iraq and Afghanistan have long complained of resulting health maladies. President Joe Biden mentioned it in his state of the union speech. Some VA benefits have begun to trickle out. For an update, the co-founder and special counsel of the National Veterans Legal Services Program, Bart Stichman.
Mar 21, 2022
University researchers don't do a good job of protecting military information
00:16:16
Defense Department components often give grants or contracts to colleges and universities, and companies for that matter, to do research. That means they develop controlled, unclassified information, or CUI. Now the Defense Office of Inspector General has found, research contractors don't do a good job of protecting that information from cyber attacks. Joining the Federal Drive with details, the project manager for audit cyberspace operations in the DODIG office, Gregory Crawford.
Mar 21, 2022
DoD has a new plan to take JADC2 from concept to reality
00:19:22
The Pentagon has been talking about its vision for Joint All-Domain Command and Control for years. Now there’s a plan to make it real. The formal implementation plan is still classified, but Defense officials say they’re ready to get to work on JADC2’s five separate lines of effort. And funding requests to start building discrete elements of the architecture will make their first appearance in next year’s budget. Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu has details.
Mar 21, 2022
Pandemic relief oversight sheds new light on persistent gaps in federal spending data
00:19:54
Efforts to oversee trillions of dollars in pandemic relief spending are running into a familiar problem: persistent gaps in federal spending data. Investigators say Congress can take some actions to make sure it's easier to track how agencies are spending taxpayer dollars. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Mar 21, 2022
Even before it was public, the AFGE has stomping on the Veterans Affairs Department's realignment plan
00:20:38
Last Monday VA Secretary Denis McDonough make public a plan for revamping the vast collection of health care facilities throughout the nation. VA proposes closing and tearing down many medical centers, building some new ones, and establishing outpatient centers. And moving more care to the private sector. The American Federation of Government Employees, with represents a couple hundred thousand VA employees, doesn't like the plan. Not one bit. Joining the Federal Drive with why, the director of AFGE's public policy department, Jacqueline Simon.
Mar 18, 2022
This homeland security cooperative agreement spans an ocean and a sea
00:19:03
The Homeland Security Department's Science and Technology Directorate has teamed up with counterparts in Israel. The goal of the program, now in its seventh year, is to fund the discovery of what it calls advanced solutions for mission-critical homeland security needs. For how it all works, the director of industry partnerships in the Office of Innovation and Collaboration, Megan Mahale.
Mar 18, 2022
The Coast Guard launches a new job class to strengthen its cyber capabilities
00:16:41
The Coast Guard will establish a new rating next year called cyber mission specialist. Officials hope it will attract new recruits and strengthen the Coast Guard's ability to carry out its cyber mission. Joining the Federal Drive with details, the chief of the Coast Guard's Cyberspace Forces, Captain Alain Balmaceda.
Mar 18, 2022
How utilizing data could lead to better, healthier training for the military
00:16:59
Serving in the military can take a serious toll on the body. New technologies and techniques might be able to save service members' back and joints. One Air National Guard squadron is working with Sparta Science on a data-driven approach to training better. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione talks with Sparta’s founder, Dr. Phil Wagner, and the 118th Air Support Operations Squadron Superintendent, Chief Master Sergeant Jeremy Mullins.
Mar 18, 2022
SSA hires retired staff to manage crowds at field offices as in-person service ramps up
00:16:57
The Social Security Administration anticipates crowds and higher than average wait times once field offices reopen their doors to public walk-in. To prepare, the agency is hiring retired staff to manage the crowds at hundreds of its field offices. For the latest, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has more.
Mar 18, 2022
A spurned federal landlord persists until it has a day in court
00:17:09
All the General Services Administration was trying to do was get new office space for Immigration and Customs Enforcement in Rhode Island. But, in a word, if bungled the procurement. The inspector general said so. So did the courts. But it wasn't easy for the losing bidder to make its case, as we hear from Smith Pachter McWhorter procurement attorney Joe Petrillo.
Mar 17, 2022
Less senior federal employees also benefit with the Merit Systems Protection Board back in business
00:19:28
After two years of total vacancy, the Merit Systems Protection Board now has two of its three members, enough to make decisions that stick. The board is where feds who feel they were wrongly sanctioned can appeal decisions of administrative judges. Here with one view of the practical effect of the board's re-establishment, federal employment attorney Stephanie Rapp-Tully, a partner at Tully-Rinckey.
Mar 17, 2022
Less senior federal employees also have reason to be glad the Merit Systems Protection Board is back in business
00:19:08
The Senior Executives Association, which represents the government's highest ranking career officials, is especially glad the Merit Systems Protection Board has a quorum of two members. The Senate confirmed them a couple of weeks ago, ending five years without a quorum. The Association's director of policy and outreach, Jason Briefel told the Federal Drive more.
Mar 17, 2022
Military spouse unemployment continues to weigh on service member families
00:16:48
With the war in Ukraine adding to inflation inflation, military service members are feeling the squeeze. The largest annual study of military families says they are desperate for a second income. But can be tough for spouses to find a job. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione has more.
Mar 17, 2022
Garland issues new FOIA guidance as lawmakers seek GAO study of agency challenges
00:16:50
It's Sunshine Week, and the Department of Justice has some new open-records guidance for agencies. Attorney General Merrick Garland is directing a presumption of openness when it comes to processing Freedom of Information Act requests. For more, Federal News Network's Justin Doubleday reports.
Mar 17, 2022
Lobbyists sign open letter asking to reopen Capitol to the public
00:18:38
The Capitol and its environs have been mostly closed to visitors since - well, you know. Tourists, Girl Scout troops, and Lions Club presidents aren't the only ones who want the Capitol opened back up, so do lobbyists. They're circulating an open letter trying to nudge members to get back to normal. For more details, the Chairman of the board of the National Institute for Lobbying and Ethics, Paul Miller spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 16, 2022
VA study of health care market access has some data gaps
00:17:27
On orders from Congress, the Department of Veterans Affairs has been doing a detailed study of nearly 100 health care markets nationwide. It aims to realign facilities with where veterans actually are. Now the Government Accountability Office has studied VA's studies. For what auditors found, the GAO's Director of Health Care issues Sharon Silas spoke to the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 16, 2022
Grant fosters innovative technology to adapt disabled veterans' homes
00:19:40
For several years now, the Department of Veterans Affairs has operated a grant program to help disabled veterans adapt their homes. The program is called Specially Adapted Housing Assistive Technology. For how it works and where the money goes, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the Program Chief of Policy Jason Latona.
Mar 16, 2022
VA looks to do more with fewer facilities as it rethinks real estate needs
00:17:16
The Department of Veterans Affairs is looking to make do with fewer facilities. Officials just completed a deep study of the VA's real estate portfolio. They propose closing dozens of medical centers but replacing about half of them with new ones. For the other half, VA wants to shift care to more specialized outpatient clinics or to non-VA providers. Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin for details.
Mar 16, 2022
DISA faces major protest for IT services contract while GSA simplifies online buying
00:18:51
The Defense Information Systems Agency couldn't escape a protest after awarding a big IT services contract. The General Services Administration is ready to expand its approach to simplifying online buying. These are just two of the week's biggest acquisition stories. Federal News Network Executive Editor Jason Miller has been following them. He joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin for the highlights.
Mar 16, 2022
Is the GSA throwing sand in the gears of the multiple award schedule machinery?
00:18:23
Contractors and their representatives report troubles with the Multiple Award Schedule system. The MAS is the long running and very popular system for delivering routine products to the government. The General Services Administration has operated the schedules for decades. For what's going on, federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen.
Mar 15, 2022
Classification has an unholy handmaiden, the pre-publication review board
00:19:54
Any federal employee who's come near classified or secret information know what happens if they try to publish something or give a speech. The federal government has at least 17 pre-publication review boards with the authority to say no. The whole apparatus has led to what my next guest calls several pathologies. Yale University Law Professor Oona Hathaway.
Mar 15, 2022
From a former commissioner, advice for the next team at Social Security
00:19:45
By several measures, Social Security is an agency in crisis. Its labor relations are strained, with ongoing uncertainty over contracts, and when-and-how people return to offices. It has difficulty on the customer service front, prompting tough questions from Capitol Hill. And there's no Senate-confirmed commissioner. For some perspective, the Federal Drive turned to former commissioner Mike Astrue.
Mar 15, 2022
Congress taps brakes on DoD project to reform IT funding
00:18:10
The Defense Department got most of what it wanted in last week's 2022 budget agreement. In some cases it got more. But Congress left out one small but important request. Pentagon planners had hoped it would enable more agile modernization by updating how the department pays for software development. Federal News Network's Jared Serbu and Scott Maucione joined the Federal Drive with this, and more from their latest DoD reporters notebook.
Mar 15, 2022
In a reversal of roles, Congress tells the TMF to ‘show me the money’
00:18:48
For the Technology Modernization Fund, the bank of mom and dad is closed for fiscal 2022. If you've raised kids, you probably grasp the message Congress sent to the TMF in the omnibus bill passed last week. In his weekly Reporter's Notebook, executive editor Jason Miller writes about why lawmakers zeroed out the Technology Modernization Fund.
Mar 15, 2022
That omnibus bill maybe should be called the omni-train, gravy train.
00:18:52
Congress, as it does every year, crammed in a lot of spending when it whipped up the so-called omnibus appropriations bill. Pretty much record-setting spending all 'round. The Federal Drive got a summary now from WTOP capitol hill correspondent Mitchell Miller.
Mar 14, 2022
AWOL employees, absent without leave, is a vexing problem for the Postal Service
00:17:38
It's bad enough when employees don't show up for work. For the Postal Service, it's a perpetual problem. Managers can plan and budget for vacations, even contingencies like sick days. But what about absent without leave, or AWOL? This turns out to be a prickly management challenge. For some management lessons learned, the Federal Drive turned to the Postal Service's deputy assistant inspector general, Jason Yovich.
Mar 14, 2022
Interior IG finds Anacostia Park Police office in severe disrepair
00:18:17
Imagine a federal office with holes in the roof, birds flying in, mold everywhere, and a staff untrained for its crucial public safety mission. Hard to believe? Yet that's what the Interior Department's office of inspector general found at the U.S. Park Police dispatch center for the Washington, D.C. area. Joining the Federal Drive in studio with details, Interior IG Mark Lee Greenblatt.
Mar 14, 2022
Senate passes $1.5T omnibus spending deal seeking state of the federal workforce updates
00:17:25
Congress, late as always, has passed a comprehensive spending package for the rest of fiscal 2022. The $1.5 trillion give the IRS more money to go after tax cheats and sets higher pay caps for nurses at the VA. Lawmakers are also asking for a slew of status updates on the state of the federal workforce. For details, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has more.
Mar 14, 2022
Defense installations starting to feel the brunt of climate change
00:17:39
The effects of climate change and extreme weather have started to make an impact on the military. One example is how frequent hurricanes are battering installations in the south. Defense Department sustainability chief Joe Bryan says the Pentagon has new efforts to shield weapons systems, bases and other assets from severe weather. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione recently spoke with Bryan about them.
Mar 14, 2022
How to button up a cybersecurity risk on every computer in the government
00:19:32
Don't click on that attachment. How many times have you heard that in anti-phishing training? Often attachments with malicious payloads come in the popular Adobe PDF format. Recently the National Security Agency issued guidance for how to configure your PDF readers application safely. Joining the Federal Drive with more on the whole PDF question, from Adobe itself, the vice president for public sector digital media, Paul Faust.
Mar 11, 2022
Veterans Affairs completes a deep study of how it treats those with post-traumatic stress disorder
00:20:00
The Veterans Health Administration is always looking for ways to improve psycho-therapy treatment of post-traumatic stress disorder. Two leading methods are known as cognitive processing and prolonged exposure. VA's top expert on the problem recently co-authored the report on an extensive study that compared the two therapies. Joining the Federal Drive with more is that expert. She's the executive director of VA's National Center for PTSD, Dr. Paula Schnurr.
Mar 11, 2022
Intelligence community whistleblowers finally get a little help, from Congress
00:17:43
Whistleblowers across the government have gotten increasingly more support and protection over the years. Except for those in the secretive intelligence community. They have no independent enforcement mechanisms for the protections they do have. Joining the Federal Drive with how things are about to change, the policy counsel at the Project on Government Oversight, Melissa Wasser.
Mar 11, 2022
IRS to use new technologies to become more efficient
00:18:31
Doing more with less, easier said than done. For the IRS, it's driven the move to robotic process automation. Shanna Webbers is the assistant deputy commissioner for operations support at the IRS and Teresa Hunter is the chief financial officer. They discuss how RPA is helping the tax agency become more efficient, and move employees out of the mundane and into the more valuable work.
Mar 11, 2022
Pentagon comptroller says space, AI, microelectronics key in next budget
00:16:55
The Pentagon’s top budget official thinks Washington is about to turn a corner on national security. Lawmakers have come to an agreement on a spending bill with a big defense increase. But just like everyone else, the Pentagon will have to deal with inflation. Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday brings us the latest.
Mar 11, 2022
Pentagon to shut down Honolulu fuel storage facility
00:17:03
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin decided this week to completely shut down DoD’s giant fuel storage farm near Honolulu. The Red Hill facility has leaked fuel into groundwater supplies. The most recent incident sickened some 6,000 people living in Navy housing. The decision has major strategic and logistics implications for the indo-pacific region. The military is going to need to replace that storage capacity one way or another. Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu talked about the challenges with Hudson Institute military logistics expert Tim Walton.
Mar 10, 2022
The head of the biggest postal union reacts to just-passed reform legislation
00:16:48
A long-awaited reform bill backers hope will save the Postal Service more than $100 billion is headed to President Joe Biden’s desk. This after the Senate passed the Postal Service Reform Act. It ends a 2006 mandate to pre-fund retiree health benefits. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy supports the bill. So do postal associations and unions. For one reaction, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with the President of the American Postal Workers Union, Mark Dimondstein.
Mar 10, 2022
You think you understand phishing attacks? Wait 'til you hear this
00:20:12
You probably know that phishing attacks, cyber attacks using faked email … are getting more sophisticated. You may not know exactly how sophisticated. For the anatomy of one high-end account, we turn to cybersecurity entrepreneur and vice president of strategy at Inky, Roger Kay.
Mar 10, 2022
How the art of cybersecurity is advanced by research for the public domain
00:21:17
The non-profit Mitre Corporation has become the locus of an extensive research program in cybersecurity. Its Center for Threat-Informed Defense has collaborated with more than a dozen companies to produce. So far, 13 research reports freely available to anyone. Joining the Federal Drive with a progress report, the Center's director of research and development, Jon Baker.
Mar 10, 2022
SPACECOM doesn’t even have a formal office, but it’s in the center of future conflict
00:16:05
U.S. Space Command doesn’t even have a formal office to work out of. Yet it’s dealing with some of the most serious issues for the future of conflict. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione takes us through the new command’s challenges.
Mar 10, 2022
Can the trend of decreasing employee unions be reversed?
00:21:30
A task force established by the Biden administration has issued dozens of recommendations for unionizing federal agencies and contractors. Will it have any effect? After all, the percentage of the workforce that is organized has been falling steadily for many years. For analysis, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to managing partner of the law firm Tully Rinckey, Dan Meyer.
Mar 09, 2022
Biden administration task force issues recommendations for unionizing federal agencies
00:21:30
A task force established by the Biden administration has issued dozens of recommendations for unionizing federal agencies and contractors. Will it have any effect? After all, the percentage of the workforce that is organized has been falling steadily for years. For analysis, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to the managing partner of the D.C. office of the law firm Tully Rinckey, Dan Meyer.
Mar 09, 2022
Littoral combat ship program struggles to push forward
00:17:43
The Navy's littoral combat ship program has never lived up to its promises. Although it scaled back the program, the Navy still plans to field 35 of the ships. But they have serious and persistent problems. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got highlights of the latest look-see from the Director of Defense Capabilities and Management Issues at the Government Accountability Office, Diana Maurer.
Mar 09, 2022
Bid protest over Census MAS award centers 'misrepresentation' claim
00:17:09
Acme Services Contractors submits a bid using Sally, Bill and Jessie as the lead talent. Sally leaves for another company after the bids are in. Does that mean the bids are no longer valid? Well not necessarily. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got more about a recent protest on these lines from Smith Pachter McWhorter attorney Joseph Petrillo.
Mar 09, 2022
WH cyber strategy hangs on CISA's zero trust maturity model
00:16:04
The White House has ordered agencies to come up with a plan for adopting zero trust security on their networks. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency updated its guidance and services to help agencies get there. Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday had the latest on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 09, 2022
Agency says medical discrimination of disabled people worsened during pandemic
00:16:48
The Health and Human Services, and Justice departments are looking at regulations to improve health care for people with disabilities. The National Council on Disability’s Health Equity Framework lays out steps agencies should take to eliminate medical discrimination against people with disabilities, an issue the council says got worse during the COVID-19 pandemic. For more, Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman spoke with the commission’s chairman Andrés Gallegos.
Mar 09, 2022
Ready or not, here comes the new buy-American procurement rule
00:19:45
A new rule increasing the U.S.-made content in what the government buys is on the way. The Federal Acquisition Regulation Council published it yesterday. It increases the minimum U.S. content from 55% to 60%, and eventually to 75%. But, the rule has several exceptions. The Federal Drive got analysis from the president and CEO of the Professional Services Council, David Berteau.
Mar 08, 2022
The Forest Service publishes a plan to mitigate the risk of wild forest fires
00:19:02
Wildfires and forest fires have become almost a year-'round phenomenon. It can't continue. So the U.S. Forest Service has a new strategy aimed at protecting homes and towns in danger, and for the resilience of woodlands themselves. Forest Service program manager Brian Ferebee joined the Federal Drive with the details.
Mar 08, 2022
How the Navy is dealing with a heightened cybersecurity threat situation
00:27:01
Even an organization as big and armed as the United States Navy doesn't take the ransomware threat for granted. For how it's dealing, earlier the Federal Drive spoke with the principal cyber advisor in the office of the Navy chief information officer, Chris Cleary.
Mar 08, 2022
GAO rejects legal challenges to multibillion dollar military moving contract
00:18:52
There’s still a chance the Defense Department’s multibillion dollar household goods moving contract could get derailed by another round of bid protests at the Court of Federal Claims. But as of now, it’s full steam ahead. After the Government Accountability Office denied five separate protests last week, U.S. Transportation Command immediately lifted a stop work order. That lets winning vendor HomeSafe Alliance start the implementation process for the massive transformation of the military’s moving system. Al Thompson is HomeSafe’s CEO. He talked with Federal News Network’s Jared Serbu about some of the next steps.
Mar 08, 2022
GSA looking to help contractors weather high inflation
00:18:15
Inflation is at its highest rates since the 1990s. While nearly everyone is experiencing the pain of five-buck gasoline and other rising chicken prices, federal contractors with long-term deals are feeling a different kind of discomfort. In his weekly Reporter's Notebook, executive editor Jason Miller writes about why rising costs are forcing some companies out of the federal market, and what the General Services Administration is hoping to do about it.
Mar 08, 2022
It's a weird time in Congress with a war going on in Europe
00:17:47
Besides the omnibus budget package, Congress is dealing with a few other issues this week, like Postal reform. But it's a short week, as we learn from Bloomberg Government deputy news director Loren Duggan.
Mar 07, 2022
Think you were exposed to Covid at work? There's a lawsuit for that
00:20:05
The largest federal union has filed a class action lawsuit for employees who think they were exposed to Covid-19 at work. There's even a web site where people can sign on. Here with details, from the law firm Kalijarvi, Chuzi, Newman and Fitch, partner Heidi Burakiewicz.
Mar 07, 2022
This Naval Research innovation initiative suddenly seems super relevant
00:28:38
In its ongoing search for innovation towards the strategic edge, the Office of Naval Research has turned to academic. ONR recently sponsored a research project called the Gordian Knot For National Security Innovation. It's housed at Stanford University. For what's been happening since the center opened last fall I spoke with the chief of Naval Research, Rear Admiral Lorin Selby.
Mar 07, 2022
Spurred on by Russia, Senate bill carries slew of cyber requirements for agencies, industry
00:17:03
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has led to widespread concerns about accompanying cyber attacks. Now Congress is moving forward with major cybersecurity legislation, including new requirements for agencies. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Mar 07, 2022
MSPB can chip away case backlog ‘almost immediately,’ having regained first quorum in 5 years
00:17:43
Federal employees looking to appeal pay cuts or dismissals won't have to wait on the Merit Systems Protection Board much longer. The Senate last week confirmed two nominees to serve on the board, enough for the first quorum in more than five years. The board has a backlog of thousands of appeals cases, but also a few tools and strategies to tackle it. Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman joined the Federal Drive with more.
Mar 07, 2022
The Energy Department widens the hunt for novel energy technologies
00:19:37
The Advanced Research Projects Agency Energy, ARPA-E, is spending big to unearth the next generation of technologies for energy. It's launched a $175 million grant program for everything from wind to fusion. For details, ARPA-E's deputy director for technology, Jenny Gerbi.
Mar 04, 2022
The federal workforce skews older than average. Is that bad?
00:18:18
Discussion about the federal workforce rarely go three minutes, before someone laments the need to get young people into government. Yet three quarters of the federal workforce is over 40, a much higher percentage than in the private sector. So it may be no surprise that age discrimination complaints in government are more common than in the private sector. American University professor Bob Tobias has been studying the federal workforce for decades.
Mar 04, 2022
This retired one-star takes his armaments experience to the private sector
00:19:41
To fight and win the nation's wars, the Defense Department needs the best possible armaments. The National Armaments Consortium brings together contractors, researchers and academics in the development of new armament technologies for the military to acquire and test. Now the consortium has a new vice president of customer engagement, retired Army Brigadier General Al Abramson.
Mar 04, 2022
What the Government Publishing Office has in common with Vera Bradley and Briggs and Stratton
00:18:44
A recent list in Forbes Magazine, of 500 of the best midsized employers in the United States, included a couple of federal agencies. Among them, the Government Publishing Office. For an update on what this Congressional agency has been up to, the Federal Drive turned to director Hugh Halpern.
Mar 04, 2022
Pentagon to us Google Cloud again for another agency's commercial cloud computing
00:18:25
The Defense Department is becoming more reliant on commercial cloud computing. That means it needs more than one option. The relatively tiny Defense Innovation Unit recently settled on Google Cloud for a production contract. The company’s security framework around the cloud mirrors that of DISA’s Cloud Access Point. Federal News Network’s Scott Maucione talked about the contract with DIU cyber portfolio manager Richard Simon.
Mar 04, 2022
Even indirect military support of Ukraine will cost the U.S. Money
00:15:33
The United States may not be a war with Russia in the classic military sense. But it does have troops deployed to NATO countries. And that costs money. For a view into contract spending to support troops in NATO countries, we turn to Bloomberg Government senior data analyst Paul Murphy.
Mar 03, 2022
The Pentagon's race to modernize the military may not be marching fast enough
00:19:46
If the U.S. military's modernizing efforts don't go faster than its aging process, the country's got a problem. Yet that's exactly what's happening, according to my next guest. Robert McDonald is a retired CIA officer and former professor of national security at the National War College.
Mar 03, 2022
How to fix the festering problem of federal contact centers
00:20:44
Few services to the public can be as troublesome as agency contact centers. Just ask the IRS. Yet as long as people have phones, they're going to want service by telephone. Technology consultants at Deloitte studied contact centers and came up with a model for what they call the contact center of the future. Joining the Federal Drive with what that might look like, Deloitte Consulting principal Marc Mancher.
Mar 03, 2022
Agency technology spending portal gets long-needed upgrade
00:18:38
The whiskered Federal IT Dashboard would getting a facelift under the administration's fiscal 2023 budget plan. The portal that makes agency technology spending transparent and searchable hasn't had a major upgrade since it launched in 2009. For more on the planned improvements, Federal News Network's Jason Miller spoke with the director of data transparency for GSA’s Office of Governmentwide Policy, Dan York.
Mar 03, 2022
OMB sees 2022 as ‘most significant year’ for security clearance reform
00:17:35
The White House sees 2022 as an important year for personnel vetting reform. The background investigations backlog seems to have dried up, but officials say granting security clearance still takes too long because its too complicated. They hope technology will help solve a lot of the problems. For more, Federal News Network’s Justin Doubleday.
Mar 03, 2022
2023 budget negotiations start soon, WH expected to propose small Defense increase
00:16:55
In just a few weeks the annual budget dance, this time for 2023, will start. People who follow these things closely predict the White House will request only a very small increase for the Defense Department, knowing Congress will plus it up anyway. For the latest detail, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin turned to Bloomberg Government reporter Roxana Tiron.
Mar 02, 2022
GAO says consolidated statements can't clarify the status of federal finances
00:20:19
Financial management problems at the Defense Department show up year after year. Throw in problems at the Small Business Administration and a few other persistent issues, and it's impossible to accurately assess the state of federal finances. And that's the conclusion from the latest look at the government's consolidated statements conducted by the Government Accountability Office. The Federal Drive with Tom Temin got the latest from the GAO's Director of Financial Management and Assurance issues, Dawn Simpson.
Mar 02, 2022
Ukraine-Russia conflict puts cyber warfare front and center
00:18:57
Russia's land war in Ukraine is in some ways, an outgrowth of its long running cyberspace war. And that affects everybody, not just Ukraine. For how the current situation changes the cybersecurity picture, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin spoke with the senior director of the Center on Cyber and Technology at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, Ret. Navy Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery.
Mar 02, 2022
VHA's Diffusion Marketplace showcases staff ideas for innovative care
00:17:36
The Veterans Health Administration is developing new methods to treat patients by gathering ideas from its own staff. It showcases the ideas on a website called the diffusion marketplace. Now the site is open to anyone. For more, Federal News Network's Jory Heckman spoke with a member of VHA's Diffusion of Excellence program, Blaine Fitzgerald, on the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 02, 2022
DoD awards nearly $2B to build first satellite-based ‘backbone’ of JADC2
00:18:26
Two major Defense Department information technology initiatives took major steps this week. The Fourth Estate Network Consolidation, involving most of DoD outside of the armed services themselves, has awarded a big contract to modernize its underlying network. Plus on the armed services side, DoD is putting the initial pieces in place to create the backbone of the Joint All-Domain Command and Control (JADC2) Project. For more on these two efforts, Federal News Network Executive Editor Jason Miller and Deputy Editor Jared Serbu joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Mar 02, 2022
When you look at the all the rules, no wonder the small business contractor base is shrinking
00:16:45
The government looks like its doing everything possible to discourage companies from selling to it. Especially small businesses, who lack the manpower or intestinal fortitude to slog through a growing number of rules. That's the view of longtime federal sales and marketing consultant Larry Allen, who joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
Mar 01, 2022
The Labor Department adds muscle to its wage and hour enforcement work
00:21:38
If you like going after companies that cheat their employees on wages, this might be the job for you. The Labor Department wants to hire one hundred investigators in its wage and hour division. The Federal Drive got more now from the division's acting administrator, Jessica Looman.
Mar 01, 2022
How world events are hitting federal employees right in the TSP
00:15:11
Thrift Savings Plan returns for the month are out today. Participation in the federal employee version of the 401K is up for 2022. But the recession has been unlike anything before. Ditto for the recovery. The Federal Thrift Retirement Investment Board is watching the rebound closely. And its getting ready to launch new digital tools for TSP users. Federal News Network’s Amelia Brust has the latest.
Mar 01, 2022
An inside look at the State Department during a war in Europe
00:20:08
The ongoing aggression by Vladimir Putin and his Russian armed forces has provoked a nearly all-of-government response from the United States, no less than nations geographically closer to Ukraine. That includes the State Department. For a view from the inside, the Federal Drive turned to the president of the American Foreign Services Association, Eric Rubin.
Mar 01, 2022
Defense contractor revenue is strong, so why is the state of the sector weakening?
00:19:53
The state of the Defense industrial base depends a lot on where you sit these days. In the boardroom, many DIB companies, especially large ones, are seeing revenue increases, meaning contracts are flowing. But for the Pentagon, the DIB itself continues to shrink. In his weekly Reporter's Notebook, executive editor Jason Miller covers the state of the defense industrial base and why some believe two recent reports should serve as a wake up call. Jason joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
Mar 01, 2022
What needs to happen next for the White House zero trust cyber strategy to really work
00:14:52
The Biden administration has done well in building momentum behind its zero trust initiatives. But a focus on short-term goals, to the exclusion of long-term planning, runs the risk of undershooting a sustained impact. That’s the warning in a new report from the National Security Telecommunications Advisory Council – or NSTAC - on the state of zero trust adoption in the federal government. Federal News Network's David Thornton has more.
Feb 28, 2022
USAID creates a new position to oversee digital technologies
00:25:52
There's a new position at the U.S. Agency for International Development. It's called the Chief Digital Development Officer. For what the job is all about and why, we've got the guy who holds it. Christopher Burns joined the Federal Drive to discuss.
Feb 28, 2022
Why better decision-making, not just money, is key to military superiority
00:20:17
Let's face it. China may no longer be a near-peer to the United States, militarily. It's likely caught up and could even be ahead. Analysis by Govini finds that to gain or keep an advantage, military leaders don't need more money. They need better decision science. Joining the Federal Drive to explain, Govini's vice president of strategy, Billy Fabian.
Feb 28, 2022
IRS creates ‘surge team’ to address backlog, scraps plan to close tax processing center
00:19:32
The IRS, still struggling with a backlog of tax returns, is coming up a few options to rev things up. Like surge teams of extra employees to work on its processing operations, taking on the backlog of paper tax returns and correspondence. The IRS is also canceling plans to close a tax processing center, following the advice of agency overseers. Federal News Network’s Jory Heckman has more.
Feb 28, 2022