Budget realities sinking in


Two small signs this month of how feds are adjusting to the prospect of tight money.

One comes from the pages of the Federal Register, where last week, the National Agricultural Statistics Service announced that it is both suspending its July sheep and goat survey and indefinitely postponing its Census of Aquaculture and a separate land ownership survey “due to budgetary cutbacks.” The notice doesn’t say how much money is involved; NASS officials could not be reached for comment Friday.

 The other is a nugget from an Association of Government Accountants report this month on technology trends.

What’s driving tech adoption nowdays? The potential to save money, one unnamed federal CFO is quoted as saying: “Cost reduction sells investments.”

Incidentally, AGA is holding its annual professional development conference in Atlanta this week (yes, FedLine is there) and the themes for some of the panel discussions say plenty about how the budget terrain has shifted in the last year. A couple of samples: “Motivating a Work Force in a Climate of Budget Cuts;” “Between a Rock and a Hard Place: Are Tight Budgets Hurting Internal Controls?;” and “Reducing Costs: Tools and Techniques for Dealing with Dramatic Budget Reductions.”


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