FOIA update heads to President’s desk for signature

The Federal Headlines is a daily compilation of the stories you hear discussed on the Federal Drive.

  • Congress passed a bill updating the Freedom of Information Act process, placing the burden on the  agency to justify why it has to withhold information rather than asking the requester to justify its release. The Office of Management and Budget would also have to set up a website to handle all FOIA requests for every agency. The bill now heads to the White House. (House Oversight and Government Reform Committee)
  • House Oversight and Government Reform Committee leaders not only want the Internal Revenue Service commissioner impeached, they want him to forfeit his pension as well. POLITICO reports the committee will meet Wednesday to hold a vote on censuring John Koskinen. Chairman Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) said it will act as a “precursor to impeachment” rather than a fallback. (POLITICO)
  • The General Services Administration released a draft Request for Proposal for the GSA SmartPay 3 program, which includes its requirements for integrated charge card services meant to streamline transactions for agencies. Comments are due by July 13. (General Services Adiminstration)
  • Only 1/10th of nondepolyable Army service members can regain fighting status. The branch has 100,000 nondeployable soldiers, mostly due to medical reasons, and Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. Daniel Allyn said only 10,000 will be recuperated by the Army. That could be a problem if a fighting force is needed. Allyn said  the Army’s actual fighting force is currently 100,000 less than its total force. (Federal News Radio)
  • The intelligence community workforce is slightly more diverse now than it was five years ago. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence released its workforce demographics to the public for the first time this year.  Minorities made up 24.6 percent of the IC workforce in 2015. That’s a 1.4 percent bump over 2011, but trails the rest of the federal workforce by over 10 percent. Also, women only account for 38.5 percent of the IC workforce, which is nearly 5 percent less than the rest of the federal workforce. (Federal News Radio)
  • Scientists at the Institute of Research at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center are conducting pre-clinical tests on a potential vaccine for the Zika virus. They plan to start human testing this year. The medical center also announced a pilot program for kidney donations where military families can donate kidneys to patients on the transplant list. It was announced as part of the White House-hosted Organ Summit. (Defense Department)
  • Former Sen.  George Voinovich (R-Ohio), who died over the weekend, was deeply committed to public service. A state legislator, Cleveland mayor and Ohio governor, Voinovich advocated for strengthening public work forces. A 2011 essay in GovExec noted Voinovich’s subcommittee held 50 hearings on federal workforce and management issues. Among his proposals were the establishment of chief human capital officers and deputy secretaries for management at Defense and Homeland Security. (GovExec)
  • Agencies will more easily be able to buy new cybersecurity services through the GSA schedule contract. The General Services Administration will add a new special item number for cybersecurity services to the IT schedule by the end of the fiscal year. GSA released a second request for information yesterday asking for industry input on how best to structure the contract for the new services. GSA expects to open up the IT schedule to bids or modifications by mid-September. Responses to the new RFI are due June 21. (FedBizOpps)