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2/26/2014
11:10 AM
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Federal IT Reform Bill Passes House

Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act contains far-reaching changes to the IT procurement system. It would grant greater authority to agency CIOs.

Rep. Darrell Issa
Rep. Darrell Issa

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jagibbons
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jagibbons,
User Rank: Ninja
2/27/2014 | 9:15:26 PM
Re: IT Reform
Those are good questions, Lorna. From other things I've read, I think there is a leaning toward open source when it fits security and regulatory requirements. As for the confirmationssing question, passing an agency CIO through a Senate confirmation process could kill the forward progress of this kind of initiative.
Lorna Garey
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Lorna Garey,
User Rank: Author
2/27/2014 | 10:53:21 AM
Re: IT Reform
How do they put "proprietary software on an even playing field against open source software"? I don't get that - do they mean make it easier to go open source?

Also, will these agency CIOs need to be confirmed by the senate? Seems like that could make the situation worse, not better, if an agency is rudderless because of political gamesmanship.
jagibbons
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jagibbons,
User Rank: Ninja
2/26/2014 | 9:03:14 PM
Re: IT Reform
I agree that this legislation has great potential. And, it's about darn time.
WKash
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WKash,
User Rank: Author
2/26/2014 | 1:08:39 PM
IT Reform
FITARA is an important piece of legislation and Congressmen Darrell Issa and Gerry Connolly deserve credit for ushering it through the House.  While not everyone believes that having a single CIO in charge at each agency will solve the problems of duplicative IT spending, it is a positive step in the right direction and the most important enhancement of the CIO's role in government since the 1996 Clinger-Cohen Act.

The acquisition reforms are also much needed, and Congressman Issa and Connolly again deserve credit in listening to the concerns of industry and adjusting the legislation, so for instance, open source software and proprietary software can compete on a more level playing field for federal business.  In particular, agencies need better acquisition tools to buy computing by the day or week, versus the procedures most agencies still must follow, written at a time when computing buys and software licensing deals could take 3-year to complete.

FITARA also makes data center optimization and the need for a highly skilled IT workforce important components in agency planning and reporting that should also help drive out wasteful IT practices.  Now we see how serious the Senate is about addressing these issues.
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