Tom Temin of Federal News Radio considers President Donald Trump’s executive order requiring agencies to remove two regulations for every one they propose. Temin writes that the order is more complicated than it may seem, with no guidance on how impactful the regulations have to be, or if they even have to address the same concerns. He writes that “in theory” regulations will match up, “because of the regulatory ‘budget’ process built into the latest executive order. It requires agencies to offset the estimated costs of new regulations by removing ones with greater cost.”
Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney and some on the city council are at odds over the mayor’s $500 million city infrastructure proposal. Kenney wants to spend the money through two nonprofit partners, while members of the council want to see the money disbursed through the city’s procurement process. “Why would I diminish my ability to be able to weigh in on those decisions?” asked Councilwoman Cindy Bass.
Former Office of Federal Procurement Policy Administrator Steve Kelman proposes that if agencies are having difficulty funding information technology (IT) modernization efforts, they could look to what he calls “an old idea.” Kelman writes: “The basic idea was that contractors would be paid, all or in part, though the savings their efforts generated.” Kelman notes that Chris Cairns, a co-founder of the General Services Administration’s (GSA) 18F innovation shop, has “taken up the gavel.”
The Chief Human Capital Officers Council has issued guidance on the federal hiring freeze instituted by President Donald Trump. The guidance outlines the many exemptions to the freeze, including those for military personnel and all uniformed federal personnel (including the U.S. Coast Guard) presidential appointments, and the Postal Service.
Nineteen Republicans in the House are calling on President Trump to carve out an exception to the freeze for defense acquisition personnel. In a letter, the lawmakers argued that the acquisition workforce is critical to the military’s readiness. “Their work directly impacts our military’s ability to modernize its equipment and keep its technological edge against a broad range of threats,” they wrote. “Our military needs its acquisition personnel fully staffed and fulfilling their public service. Yet the military departments are now interpreting the Hiring Freeze memorandum to include these federal civilians essential to national security and military readiness.”
The Department of Defense’s former chief acquisition executive, Frank Kendall, wrote in his departure memo that the Pentagon needs a study of its hacking risk, particularly in its logistics operations. Kendall asked the Defense Science Board (DSB) to study possible future conflicts with countries such as Russia and China, where it may be difficult to stage supply operations. Kendall also wants the DSB to assess situations where contractor-provided logistics would be difficult to support.