GAO’s Report on Overbudget DoD Weapons Programs & Other ExecutiveGov Need-to-Read Stories

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ExecutiveGov’s round-up of news you need to read to stay up to speed on federal policy impacting the government-contracting community.

Image: Melanie Gamarra

OMB to Shutter Open-gov Sites?

Federal News Radio reports the Office of Management and Budget will shut down seven open-government websites by the end of May because of a lack of funding related to the ongoing 2011 funding fracas.

Funding for public sites such as the IT Dashboard, and will begin running out April 20, government sources told Federal News Radio.

The White House requested $35 million for e-government funding, which covers the sites. However, competing House and Senate continuing resolutions would fund only $2 million and $20 million, respectively.

“The continuing resolution says we can only spend what we would reasonably expect to get during the fiscal year, and we have no reasonable expectation to get more than a couple of millions of dollars,” the unnamed government source said.

Click here for to read more from Federal News Radio.

DoD Puts Finishing Touches on New Cyber Strategy

The Defense Department is putting the finishing touches on a new cybersecurity strategy, focused on training and equipping forces, Defense News reports.

“It will help the department better organize, train and equip, and be prepared for its operations across the spectrum – whether it’s military, it’s business operations, as well as intelligence activities,” said DoD director for cyber strategy Mary Beth Morgan this week at a D.C. conference.

Click here for more from Defense News.

Congress Tells Agencies to Consider Reg’s Impact on Small Business

Washington Business Journal reports Congress is considering how agency regulations affect small business and whether federal agencies are doing enough to make sure small business are not being overtaxed with paperwork and reporting requirements.

Per the 1980 Regulatory Flexibility Act, federal agencies must consider how compliance with their regulations would impact small businesses, which typically have fewer resources than larger enterprises. But, WBJ reports, while it may be the law in theory, it doesn’t always happen in practice.

Click here to read about possible congressional action.

Shinseki: Agreement Reached Between DoD, VA on EHR System

Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric Shinseki have agreed on a strategy to implement a common electronic-health-record system, Nextgov reports.

The agreement is expected to save billions of dollars in costs for development and upkeep.

Click here for more information.

GAO: At Least 50 Percent of DoD Weapons Program Overbudget

A recent Government Accountability Office report found that at least 50 percent of the Defense Department’s weapon-acquisition programs have gone beyond their original projected expenses, Global Security Newswire reports.

According to the report, the expenditures for DoD’s 98 primary procurements programs increased by $135 billion since 2008. And as cost over-runs continue to plague the department, it makes harder to balance a shifting budget line, observers say.

“We simply cannot balance our budget when we consistently pay hundreds of billions of dollars more than expected for our major weapons systems,” said Sen. Thomas Carper (D-Del.), chairman of a Senate subcommittee tasked with financial management.

Click here to read more.

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