Federal Drive Show Blog - August 5, 2013

Monday - 8/5/2013, 11:31am EDT

This is the Federal Drive show blog. Here you can listen to our interviews, find more information about the guests on the show each day, as well as links to other stories and resources we discuss.

Today's Interviews:

Jared Serbu
DoD Reporter
Federal News Radio

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Navy officials say their fleet of surface ships has started to rebound from a decade of neglected maintenance. But they say sequestration will reverse those gains, and ultimately lead to a much smaller fleet. More from Federal News Radio's DoD Reporter Jared Serbu.

Nora Bensahel
Director of Studies
Center for a New American Security

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If Congress does not undo the sequester for the coming years, the Pentagon will continue making drastic cuts. Last week, an advisory board gave Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel a menu of options for scaling back none of them very palatable. One option would cut the Army to 380,000 troops, far smaller than what's currently planned. If anything, though, the Pentagon is slow to the game. Defense-minded think tanks have developed their own recommendations for what a smaller Defense Department should look like. Nora Bensahel is director of studies at the Center for a New American Security.

Ginger Groeber
Founder
Exfederal.com

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No more fiscal cliff. Analysts are calling sequestration "a roller coaster." It's a bumpy ride for people looking for jobs in the federal community or contractors who are using to hiring lots of people for big government projects. Exfederal.com is a jobs website geared towards federal contractors. It's running deep discounts and calling them "sequestration specials." Ginger Groeber is the founder of Exfederal.com.

Jitinder Kohli
Director of Federal Government Performance Practice
Deloitte

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President Barack Obama says he wants a smarter, more innovative, and more accountable government. But how do you get it? The Office of Management and Budget recently sent agencies guidance on setting their fiscal 2015 budgets. And OMB summed it up this way: Do what you know works. But still experiment and be (that Washington buzz word) innovative. If that's left you scratching your head, you're in luck. Emily called Jitinder Kohli. He's a director at Deloitte, where he leads the company's Federal Government Performance Practice. He formerly served in the British government.

Sean Moulton
Director of Open Government Policy
Center for Effective Government

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The fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas is raising questions about the Department of Homeland Security's monitoring of facilities that use dangerous chemicals. Some DHS officials have suggested they messed up by relying too much on the industry to police itself. And outside critics are blaming a culture of secrecy. Sean Moulton is director of Open Government Policy at the Center for Effective Government. He recently testified in Congress alongside homeland security officials and auditors.

Jason Miller
Executive Editor
Federal News Radio

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How much does it cost to maintain online dashboards and other performance-tracking tools? The debate is playing out in Congress. Lawmakers are trying to determine how much to appropriate to the E-Government Fund. As Executive Editor Jason Miller writes, the House and Senate are far apart on a deal.

Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas)

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New Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz is not cleaning house but reorganizing it to get some long-time problems under control. His plan hinges on having a new undersecretary oversee management and performance. His deputy recently presented the plan to the House Energy and Commerce Committee. Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas) was there, and he shared his thoughts with Emily.

Heard Tom and Emily talk about another story during the show, but don't see it here? Check out our daily federal headlines for the latest news affecting the federal community.