Disruptive Tech: using the Netflix model in government and you’ll meet the Johnny Appleseed of Open Source

Happy Thursday - March 22, 2012

On today’s program...

But as we do each day, we start with the stories that impact your life for Thursday the 22 of March, 2012... your government world in 120-seconds...

  • The House Budget Committee approved Chairman Paul Ryan's 2013 budget resolution on late yesterday by a one vote margin -- 19 to 18. The Hill reports that two conservative Republicans voted against the Ryan plan because it did not cut the budget fast enough. The Ryan plan would cut spending by $5.3 trillion over ten years. The tight vote indicates that next week House GOP leaders could face a larger floor defection than they did on last year's budget, which got every Republican but four behind it. Republican leaders say they are confident the measure will pass even though they can count on no Democratic votes. Panel conservatives had wanted the bring discretionary spending down to $931 billion next year as part of a plan to balance the budget within a decade. The Ryan plan contains a compromise spending level $97 billion higher and it does not balance until nearly 2040.
  • All of this comes as people are getting more expensive. A new pay study by ClearanceJobs.net finds that pay is on the rise for many top government clearance jobs. The Washington Business Journal says the average compensation for those with security clearances in the D.C. region was nearly six figures in 2011 — that’s a 4 percent jump compared to the previous year. Compensation was also up for contractors.
  • The Army has launched its own App store prototype. The Software Marketplace delivers 12 mobile training applications to  Soldiers to use on personal phones or tablets. The Army says the  apps were developed by the Connecting Soldiers to Digital Apps (CSDA) initiative. The apps are available online via www.marketplace.army.mil. The CSDA community is continuing to submit new apps.
  • Meanwhile, the Army is in the middle of a major rethink of mobile devices, including how it secures them, how it buys them and ultimately, how it uses them, Federal News Radio reported. The push comes amid a mandate to find $1.5 billion in IT savings across the Army.
  • Four democratic Senators are pushing for automatic defense contractor suspensions for bad behavior in overseas operations. Washington Technology says under the new bill, companies would face suspension from their government work for criminal charges, accusations of fraud or if a federal official determines that the contractor failed to pay the government what’s due. The bill also includes another important provision that would forbid contractors to  respond to past-performance evaluations. But the Bill is taking a lot of heat from the Wartime Contracting  Commission. The commission suggested lawmakers make it less difficult to suspend or debar contingency contractors and require a written rationale if an agency decides against it..
  • No more BRAC if one Senator has her way. Senator Claire McCaskill has put the kibosh on two new base closing commissions military leaders said they wanted. Marine Corps Times reported that Senator McCaskill who is the chairwoman of the subcommittee that oversees military installations, said her no-closures stance was not negotiable. House Armed Services Committee Chairman Buck McKeon also weighed in against further BRAC rounds. Pentagon officials said they needed to align real estate with a new, reduced force structure.
  • A new procurement center could help agencies beef up business with minority-owned companies. The Minority Business Development Agency is launching the office, which would work with firms of all sizes. It's focus will be on companies that can serve as tier one contractors. MBDA chose the Metropolitan Economic Development Association to run the center with a $1.8 million grant. The center opens next Tuesday.
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