The Federal Headlines is a daily compilation of the stories you hear discussed on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
In today’s Top Federal Headlines, the Office of Management and Budget has issued guidance for how agencies must expand how they determine, report and protect high-value IT assets.
New requirements for agencies for how they protect important data and systems. Agencies have to report their updated list of high-value IT assets by Jan. 15 to the Office of Management and Budget. Departments first identified these systems and data that are considered essential to their mission during the 2015 cyber sprint. Now, under new guidance issued this week from OMB, agencies must expand how they determine, report and protect these assets. OMB wants agencies to establish appropriate governance of HVA activities across the enterprise and integrate HVA remediation activities into agency planning, programming, budgeting, and execution processes. (White House)
President-elect Donald Trump’s plans to place his financial assets in a trust controlled by his children may violate federal ethics rules.The Office of Governmentwide Ethics told Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) that transferring operational control of a company to one’s children would not be a qualified blind trust, nor would it eliminate conflicts of interest under the law. The President-elect delayed his final announcement for how he would address potential conflicts of interest with his businesses until January. (Federal News Radio)
President Obama has said “thank you” to the federal workforce for possibly one last time during his time in office. The White House released its impact report on the federal workforce’s accomplishments during the past eight years. It paid special attention to the work federal employees have done to improve their agency’s customer service to the public. Obama reminded feds to remember why they signed up for public service, and to continue the good work when the administration changes. (Federal News Radio)
The Obama administration has joined a think tank to recommend continued use of crowdsourcing. Federal employees and the Woodrow Wilson Center put together ideas for expanding the involvement of ordinary citizens in problem solving. The effort is detailed in a blog post by Kelly Olson of the General Services Administration. She cited 300 federally sponsored projects at CitizenScience.org alone. The post doesn’t mention the incoming Donald Trump administration, but appears to speak to it. (General Services Administration)
Time is running out for feds to donate to the Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund through Combined Federal Campaign pledges. Tomorrow, Dec. 15 is the last day to make a pledge. FEEA has been a CFC approved charity for 30 years, it provides emergency financial assistance and scholarships to federal employees and their families.
The Commerce Department has expanded its Digital Attaché Program. It’s added six new countries as program partners, including Mexico, Germany, and France. The Attaché Program was introduced earlier this year to help link American companies expand in electronic commerce, via online marketplaces. (Department of Commerce)
Airmen can expect to complete more training starting in January. The Air Force plans to add more cybersecurity education requirements, to better the cybersecurity culture and to stress the importance of using military computers for mission tasks only. No word yet on how many hours of training the Airmen will have to complete. (Federal News Radio)
The Air Force is in the final throes of hiring an industry executive to create a new procurement process for major IT programs. The new position will focus on agility in the procurement process to deliver the latest technology to airmen faster. Once the process is set up, the Air Force plans to start a three-year pilot program. (Federal News Radio)
The FBI is reviewing allegations that the VA misled Congress about ballooning costs to build a new medical center near Denver. Current VA leaders have already acknowledged the department made huge mistakes throughout the course of the construction project — it was initially expected to cost about $604 million, and years of management troubles have pushed the price tag to $1.7 billion. But the Justice Department told Congress on Wednesday that the FBI is looking into allegations that at least one former VA official knew about the cost overruns and misled lawmakers during testimony three years ago. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, called the case a slam dunk, and claimed VA officials repeatedly lied about the hospital’s costs. (Federal News Radio)