Planning Toward FY 2022 – A Peek at the Federal Budget

The Biden Administration recently issued its request for 2022 spending. This practice is really more of a policy effort than actual budgeting, but serves to illustrate administration priorities to inform agencies as to what is likely to get approved in the final budget. The 2022 budget request has a number of IT-specific priorities, starting with the funding of the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF) at another $500 million for fiscal 2022. This would be in addition to the $1 billion that was invested as part of the American Rescue Plan Act--money that helped support the ongoing effort to digitize government services and operations.

The $58.4 billion in IT spending includes marked increases in the IT budgets of the Treasury Department, Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Department of Homeland Security. NASA and the Department of Commerce had small reductions to its IT budgets.

Continue reading

Navigating the World With Drones

Five years ago, drones patrolling the air and delivering packages seemed like something that lived only in reruns of the Jetsons. But in a short time, drones have become a reality in our modern world with commercial models retailing for as little as $44. With this technology's fast rise, the government is working hard to determine the best way to maintain public safety while preserving the rights of people to operate drones safely.[Tweet "5 years ago, drones patrolling the air/delivering packages seemed like something from the Jetsons. #GovEventsBlog"]

Issue one is the infringement on airspace. In 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reported that the number of annual drone sightings by commercial pilots had quadrupled to 650, just by August of that year. The FAA has been looking for ways to integrate drones into the tracking of our national airspace to ensure the safety of everyone in the sky.[Tweet "The FAA has been looking for ways to integrate drones safely into our national airspace. #GovEventsBlog"] Continue reading

Exploring New Frontiers

NASA has taken the lead in exploring yet another new frontier - the world of virtual conferences. This FCW article highlights how the agency has cut costs with virtual world shows. Some highlights:

  • NASA hosted their first Virtual Executive Summit in October 2012 as a series of prerecorded and live sessions, activities and interactions hosted through NASA's human resources portal and Adobe Connect. Nearly 500 NASA leaders participated in the virtual events.
  • According to officials, the agency saved $750,000 in travel expenses and another $250,000 in logistics and venue costs -- for a total of more than $1 million in savings.
  • Virtual technology also allows agencies to host more events. NASA was able to do six times as many events in 2013 as it did in 2011.

Continue reading

Early Bird Registration Closes August 30 for 2013 Government Workforce: Learning Innovations Conference

Originally posted by PRWeb

ASTD's "un-conference" event explores collaboration and learning to create stronger government.

The early registration deadline for the OPM-approved 2013 Government Workforce: Learning Innovations Conference is Friday, August 30. The conference, presented by ASTD and "The Public Manager," will be held September 25, 2013 in Washington, D.C., and will focus on building a stronger government through innovation in learning.

The innovative "un-conference" model is designed to provide best practices and practical tools for next generation workplace learning. It will showcase how agencies can meet their strategic mission outcomes by harnessing the power of collaboration and innovation.

Continue reading

OMB: No More Lavish Government Conferences

Originally posted by Elizabeth Flock on U.S. News

New guidelines from the U.S. Office of Management and Budget say it's time to cut back on conference spending in light of the sequester. In a document, the agency said it had "taken aggressive steps to curtail conference spending," such as ensuring conferences that cost more than $100,000 were approved by the head of an agency, hotel costs were within per diem rates, and that a cyber conference was considered before any in-person event was planned.

Continue reading