While yesterday’s hearing held by two House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittees was a mostly upbeat affair given the better grades earned by several Federal agencies on the committee’s latest FITARA scorecard, committee members also grilled witnesses about impediments that stand in the way of agencies implementing a key aspect of the MGT (Modernizing Government Technology) Act. […]

Federal agencies can earn better grades on their next FITARA (Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act) scorecard by taking action on three items that underpin the scoring–software inventories, CIO reporting lines, and setting up working capital funds for IT improvements as authorized by the MGT (Modernizing Government Technology) Act–members of Congress and an official with the Government Accountability Office said today.






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Congress Capitol Senate House

The Senate unanimously approved the DHS Data Framework Act on Friday, which would require the Department of Homeland Security to develop a data framework to integrate all existing DHS databases.






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Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., said he is eyeing the post-midterm election “lame duck” period for further movement through Congress of his 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA) bill that would empower Federal agency CTOs and CIOs to modernize and improve their websites and citizen services.






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In recent comments regarding the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF), Rep. Will Hurd, R-Tex., said that he is “pretty sure that we have resolved the issue with TMF,” and expects Congress to include the full $150 million in an upcoming minibus funding bill.






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House IT Subcommittee Chair Will Hurd, R-Texas, and Ranking Member Robin Kelly, D-Ill., today introduced legislation to reauthorize, rename, codify, and elevate the role of the Federal CIO, a position initially created as part of the E-Government Act of 2002. The bill, called the Federal CIO Authorization Act of 2018, is designed to create a “clearer IT reporting structure within the Administration,” the lawmakers said in a release.  






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Tony Scott was the Federal government’s third chief information officer, serving the nation in that role from 2015 through early 2017. During his time at the helm of government-wide IT, Scott led the development of 2016’s State of Federal IT Report, which left a lasting roadmap for modernization progress in the Federal government.






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The Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA), passed by Congress in December 2014, represented the first major legislative overhaul of Federal IT in nearly 20 years. Beginning in November 2015, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) has released two scorecards a year grading agencies’ performance under the law. Suffice to say, agencies haven’t always been making the GAO’s Honor Roll, with plenty of Cs and Ds to go around. However, many agencies have made significant improvements over the last 3 years.






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Improving user experience on Federal websites so that they rival leading private sector sites requires a better allocation of government resources rather than significant new cash outlays, said Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., during a press gathering at Adobe’s Digital Government Symposium in Washington on Tuesday.






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Opening day for the Nationals might be a week away, but four Beltway insiders have already knocked one out of the park. The latest omnibus spending bill, which passed through the Senate early Friday morning, includes $100 million for the MGT Act’s centralized revolving capital fund. President Trump signed the MGT Act into law late last year as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act.






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The House subcommittees on Information Technology and Government Operations held a “State of Play” Federal IT Hearing Wednesday for the latest updates on ongoing modernization efforts, and the tone was resolute and unflinching.






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Federal CIOs and industry execs gathered on the Hill Thursday evening to celebrate the passage of the Modernizing Government Technology–MGT–Act and map the path ahead. Judging by the standing-room-only crowd, seems government, industry, and the Hill are betting big on the legacy IT euthanasia program to break Federal IT’s failing status quo.






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Celebrate MGT

Artificial intelligence is sexy–no doubt about it. From self-driving cars to personal assistant technology that can anticipate your every need, the future of AI looks promising. However, the actual technology can be confusing. And rarely does the reality of AI match up to expectations created by Hollywood portrayals.






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The MGT Act became the law of the land on Dec. 21, when President Trump signed it into law as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). This is the much-vaunted revolving capital fund–cut out of the original FITARA bill in committee–that establishes a central bucket of money at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), managed by the General Services Administration (GSA), for Feds to modernize legacy IT systems.






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