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7:37 am, May 22, 2015

Radio Interviews

Find and listen to every interview heard on Federal News Radio's daily radio programs, The Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp (6-9 a.m.), and In Depth with Francis Rose (4-7 p.m.).

Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:28pm EDT
Mia Beers, Humanitarian Policy and Global Engagement Division, USAID

The number of Ebola cases reaches its peak in Liberia in September, with 300 new cases a week. By December, they were down to 30 a week. Mia Beers is a leader of the U.S. Ebola Disaster Assistance Response Team and director of the Humanitarian Policy and Global Engagement Division at USAID. She led 40 people from the agency, and she coordinated the work of four other federal agencies to train health care workers, set up laboratories and do "contact tracing" to find people who came into contact with the disease. Beers is a finalist for a Service to America medal in the national security and international affairs category. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose about her strategy in West Africa.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:18pm EDT
Valerie Melvin, Director of Information Management, GAO

Most agencies are doing a better job of managing their government records. Twenty-four agencies have seven requirements to improve record management. It's part of a directive the National Archives and Records Administration and Office of Management and Budget issued back in 2012. But the Government Accountability Office says five agencies have more work to do. On In Depth with Francis Rose, Valerie Melvin, director of information management and technology resources issues at the GAO, says some agencies didn't think the requirements were mandatory.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:15pm EDT
Larry Allen, President, Allen Federal Business Partners

The Veterans Affairs Department acquisition official Jan Frye alleges millions of dollars of improper spending at VA through the use of purchase cards and other problems. The response from Secretary Robert McDonald is that Mr. Frye now knows what work remains for him to fix. Larry Allen, president of Allen Federal Business Partners, talks to In Depth with Francis Rose, about the purchase cards and whether they're actually a problem.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:13pm EDT
Dan Goure, Vice President, Lexington Institute

The average rate of return for companies in the defense market is lower than any other development or manufacturing space. And there are few other incentives for companies to join the market. On In Depth with Francis Rose, Dan Goure, vice president of the Lexington Institute, says vendors don't want to get involved in a defense market that's more complicated and complex than ever.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:10pm EDT
Bill Welch, Partner, McMahon, Welch and Learned

The Internal Revenue Service pulls the plug on a contract with TaxSlayer, after the IRS realizes the proposal is non-compliant. The agency reopens the competition, and TaxSlayer's competitor wins this time. But the IRS is concerned about the transition and cancels the procurement. Bill Welch, a partner with McMahon, Welch and Learned, tells In Depth with Francis Rose, what lessons contractors can learn from this particular case.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 04:07pm EDT
Kevin Plexico, Vice President for Research, Deltek

Contract spending trends steadily downward over the past three years, thanks to years of budget cuts and sequestration. Kevin Plexico, vice president of research at Deltek, is looking at whether that trend will continue. On In Depth with Francis Rose, he explains what challenges the budget might create next fiscal year.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 08:25am EDT
Jason Miller, Executive Editor, Federal News Radio

Homeland Security is about to launch a new approach to make cybersecurity information sharing easier. In the next couple of months, the U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team (U.S. CERT) will begin using two new technical specifications called STICKS and TAXI. Both will help DHS automate how cyber information is shared between federal agencies and business. Brad Nix is the deputy director of U.S. CERT. He tells executive editor Jason Miller how DHS is putting these two standards to work to improve cybersecurity information sharing.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 08:22am EDT
John Mahoney, Federal Employment Attorney

The VA wastes at least $5 billion a year by skirting federal law and paying excessive prices for goods and services. That's according to Jan Frye, VA's deputy assistant secretary for acquisition and logistics. He recently told a congressional hearing that illegal purchase-card abuse seems to be the biggest problem. Members of the Veterans Affairs committee echo the notion that VA employees are acting illegally. What if that's you they're making those allegations about? Federal employment attorney John Mahoney joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to offer some advice.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 08:21am EDT
Dr. Rahul Rajkumar, Deputy Director, Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation

Health and Human Services reports saving hundreds of millions of dollars. It's been piloting a new payment model for health care providers, which was established by the Affordable Care Act. The model changes the incentives for providers who take a new approach to patient care and improving outcomes. Rahul Rajkumar is the deputy director of the Center for Innovation at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. He joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to explain how the model works.

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Thursday - 05/21/2015, 03:38am EDT
Thomas Stanton, President, AFERM

Risk management is what you do when there's not enough people and money to take care of all the issues that could derail your program. In other words, it's something everyone needs to do. Easy to say, but for many federal managers, a lot harder to do. IBM's Thomas Stanton, president of the Association of Federal Enterprise Risk Management, joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin to offer some insight on how to boost your risk management skills.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 04:29pm EDT
Gordon Adams, Former OMB Official

The new Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review is now out from the State Department. It's the second-ever review from the department, similar to the Quadrennial Defense Review from the Pentagon. Gordon Adams, a former Office of Management and Budget official, writes about the new QDDR for Foreign Policy magazine. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose why it's pretty unambitious.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 04:22pm EDT
Kim Weaver, Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board

The leaders of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, Chairman Ron Johnson and Ranking Member Tom Carper, have concerns about the security measures the Thrift Savings Plan takes. The TSP says it's moving to deal with those concerns. Kim Weaver, director of external Affairs at the TSP, tells In Depth with Francis Rose that TSP Board got an update on the security plan at its monthly meeting.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 04:01pm EDT
Lt. Col. Dan Ward, Cybersecurity Fellow, New America Foundation

The Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt is one of the most effective aircraft in the fleet. Its project leaders say the Thunderbolt's simple design means its development time and maintenance costs beat out other, more complex systems. But simple weapons systems are hard to come by now at the Defense Department. Retired Air Force Lt. Col. Dan Ward is now a cybersecurity fellow at the New America Foundation and his latest book is "The Simplicity Cycle." He tells In Depth with Francis Rose, government technology development programs are too complex, and simpler alternatives are already out there.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 10:07am EDT
Hudson Hollister, Executive Director, Data Transparency Coalition

This afternoon, Rep. Darrell Issa (D-Calif.) plans to introduce a bill that will change the way financial regulatory agencies go about their work. The Financial Transparency Act of 2015 would modernize the process of financial regulatory reporting, and force all nine major financial regulators to adopt open data formats for everything they collect. Hudson Hollister, executive director of the Data Transparency Coalition, joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to analyze the bill's implications and importance.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 09:50am EDT
Jason Miller, Executive Editor, Federal News Radio

The Treasury Department survived it, and so will you. But you can't avoid it. By June 15, every large agency will go through the new FedStat process as part of its fiscal 2017 budget development. The Office of Management and Budget kicked off its latest data-driven review with Treasury earlier this week. Federal News Radio's executive editor Jason Miller joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive with details on what agencies should expect when they enter the Fed-STAT review chamber.

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Wednesday - 05/20/2015, 09:35am EDT
Dr. Griffin Rodgers, Director, National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Disease, NIH

The Partnership for Public Service has announced the 30 finalists for this year's Service to America Medals (SAMI). Among them is Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Disease at the National Institutes of Health. He and his team developed the first effective drug treatment for sickle cell disease — something that's resisted cures for decades. He joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to review his work.

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Tuesday - 05/19/2015, 04:57pm EDT
Jared Serbu, DoD Reporter, Federal News Radio

Both the House and Senate versions of this year's defense authorization bill include numerous provisions on acquisition reform. But the Pentagon has serious questions about at least a few of the provisions, including one that would give the military's uniformed leaders more control over procurement decisions. More from Federal News Radio DoD Reporter Jared Serbu.

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Tuesday - 05/19/2015, 04:55pm EDT
Sharla Rausch, Former Deputy Director, Office of National Labs, DHS

Homeland Security Department Secretary Jeh Johnson says his agency can't move forward unless it stops talking about low morale. Sharla Rausch, chair of the Women in Homeland Security STEM Committee, is former deputy director of the Office of National Laboratories for DHS. When she was at the agency, she told her colleagues, "It all boils down to people." But in a piece for Security Debrief, she says rearranging a few of those words more accurately describes how federal employees are feeling today — and not in a good way. She tells In Depth with Francis Rose why national security boils down to understanding your employees.

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Tuesday - 05/19/2015, 04:50pm EDT
Gary Becker, Chief Economist, Catalyst Partners

The Transportation Security Administration gets more customer complaints on its pre-check screening program as more passengers use it. But the TSA doesn't have a comprehensive policy for releasing that information to the public. Gary Becker, chief economist for Catalyst Partners and former senior economist for the Homeland Security Department's private sector office, tells In Depth with Francis Rose about the customer service complaint data and what this could mean for TSA.

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Tuesday - 05/19/2015, 04:35pm EDT
Richard Spires, CEO, Resilient Network Systems

The Office of Management and Budget is taking comments now on its guidance for implementing the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act. FITARA could be a big landscape change for government IT— for both the government buyers and the industry sellers. Richard Spires, former chief information officer at the Department of Homeland Security and the Internal Revenue Service and now chief executive officer at Resilient Network Systems, tells In Depth with Francis Rose why he's positive about FITARA.

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