Browsing: Office of Management and Budget

Obama administration renewing focus on IT acquisition

0

For anyone familiar with last fall’s disastrous rollout of the healthcare.gov website (and that presumably includes most of the adult population of the United States), it will come as no surprise to hear that the Obama administration is again working to get smarter delivery of information technology services. “We’ve learned a tremendous amount from the challenges the administration’s recently faced and have worked  diligently to address this past year,” Beth Cobert, a senior Office of Management and Budget official, said at a recent Association of Government Accountants gathering. “But we know that information technology is important to how the government…

Shelanski, Tangherlini nominations get the go-ahead from Senate committee

0

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee gave quick approval this afternoon to candidates for two long-vacant executive branch positions. On voice votes, the panel endorsed the nominations of Dan Tangherlini to head the General Services Administration and Howard Shelanski to lead the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget. Both nominations now go to the full Senate for a final confirmation vote, according to a news release. Tangherlini has been acting head of GSA since April of last year, but President Obama picked him to permanently fill the job only last month. The OIRA post…

Agencies to cut commodity IT spending by $2.5 billion

0

Federal agencies expect to save $2.5 billion over the next three years by consolidating duplicative information technology systems, buying in bulk and eliminating failing IT projects. Those savings were identified using a new approach – called PortfolioStat – where agency officials review their spending for common IT resources such as email and desktop computers in search of duplicative investments and opportunities to consolidate projects, Acting Office of Management and Budget Director Jeffrey Zients said  in a blog post Wednesday. OMB officials met with agencies’ senior executives, including the chief information officer, financial officer, acquisition officer and operating officer this summer. OMB used data collected for these meetings to show agencies where their…

White House waste-cutting campaign draws mixed response from agencies

0

SAN DIEGO| It’s been more than a year since President Obama formally kicked off the “Campaign to Cut Waste” in a June 2011 executive order.  Some agencies, though, seem to be taking the charge to reduce administrative costs more seriously than others, a newly released survey of chief financial officers and other federal financial managers indicates. Although 45 percent of respondents said they have been getting “good results” from the campaign, almost as many (44 percent) said they had little to report, were just getting started, had laid plans to start, or (uh-oh) hadn’t done anything, according to the unscientific survey, sponsored by the Association…

More opposition to adding U.S. Trade Representative to new department

0

The U.S. Trade Representative’s office is a relatively small operation, with just 220 or so employees, according to the most recent statistics. But it’s looming very large in the debate over President Obama’s proposed consolidation of agencies dealing with business and trade policy. Key lawmakers objected almost as soon as Obama announced Jan. 13 that he wanted the Trade Representative’s office in that new department. Now, dozens of business groups are also voicing “immediate concerns” about eliminating USTR as a stand-alone agency in the Executive Office of the President.  In a joint letter this week to Obama, they said the…

New OMB adviser in line to replace procurement chief

0

Word around town is that Joseph Jordan, an associate administrator at the Small Business Administration, has been tapped to replace outgoing Office of Federal Procurement Policy Administrator Dan Gordon. The Office of Management and Budget won’t confirm that Jordan is the nominee for Gordon’s job, which requires Senate confirmation. But Jordan has been named as a senior adviser to Jeff Zients, the federal Chief Performance Officer and OMB’s deputy director for management. Jordan will start advising Zients and his senior staff on policy and procurement matters this month. Jordan did not respond to requests for an interview. Being brought on as a senior…

OMB review follows report of excessive DOJ pastry spending

0

Go figure: The humble muffin has become a government change agent. In what is probably the first-ever Office of Management and Budget directive with a connection to overpriced baked goods, Director Jack Lew is ordering agencies to take stock of their conference spending and report back by Nov. 1. The impetus, of course, is that newly released report by the Justice Department’s inspector general that uncovered numerous examples of questionable expenses at DOJ conferences from October 2007 through September 2009. What really caught the attention of politicians and the media, however, was the finding that muffins at one Washington gathering cost more than $16 each. No matter that the hotel in question…

Zients: Performance.gov going public soon

0

It’s not like the folks who run tmz.com and other celebrity web sites have much to worry about, but federal Chief Performance Officer Jeffrey Zients probably made a select group of people quite happy today with the news that performance.gov is likely going public within a few weeks. The site, intended as the electronic linchpin of the Obama administration’s performance tracking efforts, has been up since last summer, but only to federal employees with passwords. Its public debut has been eagerly anticipated in management circles, but repeatedly postponed. Exactly why has been a bit murky, but Shelley Metzenbaum, associate director…

OMB sets IT purchasing guidelines for telework

0

Federal executives have until the end of July to develop or revise information technology procurement policies that support their agencies’ telework needs, according to memo released Thursday. When crafting these policies, agencies must account for security risks and ensure that all devices and infrastructure meet federal security and privacy standards, said Office of Management and Budget Director Jack Lew in the memo. The memo directs chief information and acquisition officers to take advantage of governmentwide and agencywide contracts. Agency technology should provide remote access to internal resources and include the use of thin clients, where most of the computing is done on…

Shutdown plans now available

0

Remember the contingency plans that agencies have to prepare for the event of a government shutdown? Those documents have never been more accessible–now that the immediate threat of a halt to agency operations has passed. Under a “What’s New” section of its web site dated April 14, the Office of Management and Budget has posted links to more than 50 agency plans. Had the government closed, for example, more than three-quarters of employees in the Executive Office of the President would have been furloughed. At least for now, the prospect of a shutdown has receded since Congress last week approved…

1 2 3