Sequester Cancels Navy Fleet Week – Plus the DorobekINSIDER’s 7 Stories

On GovLoop Insights’ DorobekINSIDER:

  • Last week was a tragic one for our country, but if there was one bright spot it was the work of public servants. Oftentimes government workers are the butt of jokes or sneers, but when the manhunt ended last Friday, Boston turned out to cheer. We take a look at the power of interagency collaboration.

Sequestion: Day 55

We mentioned the list yesterday -- The Best And Worst Jobs For 2013. And yes, the worst job for 2013 was... newspaper reporter.

But the most stressful job of 2013, according to CareerCast: Enlisted military personnel. It was also ranked as the third worst job this year because “their lives are on the line, daily,” Lee told Forbes. “They are away from home for long stretches of time and with the draw-down, many are being pushed out of the military even though they want to make it a career.” The men and women who volunteer in the Armed Forces are routinely placed in dangerous situations—but the good news is, as the military draws down, fewer soldiers will be needed, Lee says.

And there are conflicting reports on the impacts of sequestration on contractors. The Washington Post says that major contractors report little damage from sequestration. 

Yet Army officials said that sequestration could force a troop reduction of some 100,000 soldiers. Army leaders said the across-the-board cuts would force the service to reduce end strength by an additional 100,000 soldiers over the next decade. "Today we find our Army at a dangerous crossroads," Army Secretary John McHugh told lawmakers. The service is currently downsizing and plans to reduce its ranks from a wartime high of 570,000 soldiers to 490,000. 

The SEVEN stories that impact your life

  1. Shelly Metzenbaum is leaving the Office of Management and Budget after four years. Metzenbaum was the Obama administration’s lead on performance management. Federal News Radio reports she is going back to Boston where she served as the founding director of the Edward J. Collins Jr. Center for Public Management at the University of Massachusetts.
  2. The Defense Department is trying to define the role of the chief information office. FCW reports the Pentagon has unveiled a directive that updates  a nearly decade-old governance. Perhaps most notable in DOD directive 5044.2 is the specific injection of cybersecurity, a phrase that does not appear in the directive's previous iteration, issued in 2005. You can read the entire directive here.
  3. The Navy has announced a full retreat from the annual Fleet Week celebration in New York City next month because of cuts due to the sequester. Government Executive reports originally scheduled for the last week of May, the Navy now says they aren't just scaling back, but will actually be sending zero ships to New York Harbor that week and "no additional Sailors or Marines." All school trips and planned activities for the week are officially canceled.
  4. The Energy Department’s Office of Scientific and Technical Information has taken a step toward better scientific databases in releasing SciTech Connect,  a reference tool that helps users browse DOE's core reference collections using semantic search techniques. GCN reports, Semantic search is the Holy Grail of computer-assisted research, intended to improve the quality of search results. Instead of using ranking algorithms as in a Google search, semantic search considers the context of a query, including word variation and natural language questions, to provide more relevant search results.
  5. The National Institute of Standards and Technology announced its intention to sponsor its first Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC). The FFRDC mechanism will allow a nonprofit organization to support the NCCoE, which was established in partnership with the state of Maryland and Montgomery County in February 2012.
  6. The Energy Secretary nominee’s confirmation has been blocked by a South Carolina Senator. Government Executive reports, Senator Lindsey Graham said the President Obama’s budget proposal for fiscal 2014 would slash funding for a plutonium-reprocessing facility along the Savannah River in South Carolina and redirect the government’s plans for dealing with weapons-grade nuclear waste to other options.
  7. And on GovLoop in case you missed the DorobekINSIDER Live panel discussion on citizen engagement - you can find the recap here.

DorobekINSIDER water-cooler fodder

  • Sequester Grounds Mile-High Trysts
    • Airport delays are apparently a reason to hook up -- in the airport. Roll Call reports: “The dating site MeetattheAirport.com sent out a release Tuesday claiming it’s experienced an 800 percent jump in membership since Sunday night, just as the hard-core delays in Los Angeles and New York were getting under way.”
  • The Best And Worst Jobs For 2013. The full list from careercast.com:
    • Enlisted military personnel—the most stressful job of 2013, according to CareerCast—ranked as the third worst job this year because “their lives are on the line, daily,” Lee says. “They are away from home for long stretches of time and with the draw-down, many are being pushed out of the military even though they want to make it a career.” The men and women who volunteer in the Armed Forces are routinely placed in dangerous situations—but the good news is, as the military draws down, fewer soldiers will be needed, Lee says.
  • 10 Things To Do Every Workday http://linkd.in/YEndrt
    • Read something related to my industry.
    • Read something related to business development.
    • Send two emails to touch base with old colleagues.
    • Empty my private client inbox by responding to all career coaching questions within one business day.
    • Check in with each team member on their progress.
    • Have a short non-work related conversation with every employee.
    • Review my top three goals for my company that are focused on its growth.
    • Identify and execute one task to support each of my top three goals.
    • Post five valuable pieces of content on all my major social media accounts.
    • Take a full minute to appreciate what I have and how far I’ve come.
  • The New Digital State?: From counterradicalizationto tracking the arms trade, Google is moving onto national governments’ turf.
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