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4:06 pm, July 31, 2014

DHS News

Joe Petrillo, Procurement Attorney, Petrillo & Powell PLLC

After spending $1 billion on a failed border security fence project, the Homeland Security Department restarted the project a couple of years ago. But it didn't get far. A $145 million award for seven new surveillance towers has been halted thanks to a successful protest. Raytheon filed the protest against the winning bidder, EFW, an affiliate of the Israeli defense contractor Elbit. The Government Accountability Office sustained the protest. In this week's legal loop segment, Procurement Attorney Joe Petrillo joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to sort out the case.

Thursday - 07/31/2014, 08:56am EDT
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Steve LaFountain, National Security Agency

This fall, five more schools will offer an intensive science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education track to students who are serious about federal cybersecurity careers. These Centers of Academic Excellence are overseen jointly by the National Security Agency and the Homeland Security Department. Schools have to pass a meticulous screening process to qualify for the program. Steve LaFountain is dean of the NSA's College of Cyber. He joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss the new move.

Thursday - 07/31/2014, 08:52am EDT
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Feds to feel the squeeze as cubicles and offices shrink

Federal workers to see as much as 50 percent less cubicle or office space as part of how agencies are reducing office space costs. Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.) pressed GSA and others on their preparation to more efficiently deal with 100 million square feet of leased space that is scheduled to expire in the next five years.

Thursday - 07/31/2014, 04:28am EDT
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Nick Nayak, Former Chief Procurement Officer, DHS

The Homeland Security Department's acquisition shop is in a far different place today than it was when Nick Nayak became the chief procurement officer in 2010. The acquisition team — and Nick himself — have won a number of recognitions for progress and excellence. Nick's last day at DHS was the first week of July. In this exit interview, Francis Rose asked him what he'd say to the contracting community about the future of acquisition on In Depth.

Wednesday - 07/30/2014, 05:05pm EDT
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Cyber handbook provides critical link between DHS, industry

The National Association of Corporate Directors' (NACD) Handbook on Cyber-Risk Oversight, introduced Tuesday at the National Press Club in Washington, outlines five key principles that aim to move forward the collaborative cybersecurity effort.

Tuesday - 07/29/2014, 02:08pm EDT

Gil Kerlikowske, Commissioner, U.S. Customs and Border Protection

More than 3,000 Border Patrol agents are working along the Texas-Mexico border as the nation deals with a surge in illegal immigration. Before President Barack Obama declared the influx of unaccompanied children and teenagers a humanitarian crisis, Customs and Border Protection was already in need of more hands. It had announced plans to hire 2,000 officers. Commissioner Gil Kerlikowske joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to give a close up view at the stresses on the border patrol.

Friday - 07/25/2014, 10:12am EDT
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Jeff Neal, senior VP, ICF International

The Social Security Administration says its new $300 million IT system still doesn't work. SSA wants to replace outdated computer systems that contribute to its backlog of disability claims. The agency says outside consultants will try to get the project back on track, but it still has no idea when it will be ready to launch. Jeff Neal is senior VP of ICF International and former chief human capital officer at the Department of Homeland Security. He's tells Francis Rose on In Depth that it's not just IT projects, but all types of federal contracts that can be where good ideas go to die.

Thursday - 07/24/2014, 06:15pm EDT
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DoD, DHS see more, earlier testing as a possible fix to troubled programs

The Defense and Homeland Security departments are pushing project managers to test technology or weapons systems earlier in the acquisition lifecycle to understand and solve potential roadblocks sooner. DoD submitted recommendations to Senate leaders for how to better integrate testing and evaluation into the acquisition lifecycle.

Wednesday - 07/23/2014, 08:48am EDT
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Jason Miller, Executive Editor, Federal News Radio

Testing and evaluating federal programs might be an old idea, but it's getting a new lease on life. Agencies are using testing and evaluation earlier in the process, and that's gaining support as a potential fix for longstanding problems. For instance, the Defense and Homeland Security departments are pushing project managers to test weapons and other new technology early in the acquisition lifecycle. Federal News Radio's Executive Editor Jason Miller joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss this emerging trend. Read Jason's related article.

Wednesday - 07/23/2014, 08:38am EDT
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House bill would strip premium pay from some TSA officers

The TSA Office of Inspection Accountability Act of 2014, sponsored by Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.), would no longer classify some Transportation Security Administration agents in the Office of Inspection as law enforcement officers.

Wednesday - 07/23/2014, 07:53am EDT

DHS cyber executive to retire

Larry Zelvin is stepping down as the director of DHS's National Cyber and Communications Integration Center (NCIC) next month after almost 30 years of government service.

Tuesday - 07/22/2014, 03:26pm EDT

Congressmen demand answers from DHS over new USIS contract

Two congressional leaders want to know whether USIS' history was considered when awarding a $190 million Homeland Security Department contract.

Thursday - 07/17/2014, 04:09pm EDT

How ICE has found success with online training

Although cutbacks in training and travel normally create challenges, Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Student and Exchange Visitor Program is benefiting from its money-saving transition to online conferencing.

Wednesday - 07/16/2014, 05:03pm EDT
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Rachel Canty, Student and Exchange Visitor Program, ICE

Just about every agency in government has suffered from cutbacks in training and travel funding. But at Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Student and Exchange Visitor Program, talking with the stakeholders in the educational institutions they oversee is a core part of the mission, so when conferences got cut back, leaders knew they had to find another way to engage. They've since moved most of their training programs online. Rachel Canty is deputy director for SEVP. She said the agency's more than happy with the results on In Depth with guest host Jared Serbu.

Tuesday - 07/15/2014, 05:05pm EDT
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Agencies reset after missing the mark on cybersecurity goals

Despite steps forward, agencies fell short of their 2014 targets for cybersecurity. The Obama administration is pushing chief information officers to focus on priorities of continuous monitoring, phishing and malware, and authorization processes for 2015, according to the newly released cross-agency priority goals on Performance.gov.

Monday - 07/14/2014, 02:52pm EDT

TSA offering early retirements

The Transportation Security Administration has received approval to offer early retirements this calendar year.

Friday - 07/11/2014, 04:39am EDT

Agencies on the right track with open data

Former DHS technology leader Dan Katz believes the continued surge in the amount of data produced daily will provide a "renaissance, of really innovative, really high-value solutions" to the government's open data issues.

Wednesday - 07/09/2014, 02:25pm EDT

House passes bills tackling DHS communications during disasters

Legislation passed by the House creates a social media working group for the Department of Homeland Security, and adds in requirements and accountability processes to improve interoperability across the agency.

Wednesday - 07/09/2014, 12:53pm EDT

GSA, DHS about ready to turn the spigot on for a new set of cyber tools

The General Services Administration and the Homeland Security Department are putting the final touches on the next set of contracts that will truly kickstart the federal move toward dynamic cybersecurity protections of agency networks and computers. The two agencies will release six task orders under the $6 billion CDM program in the coming year to implement tools and services across more than 40 agencies.

Wednesday - 07/02/2014, 04:08am EDT
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DHS S&T antes up $95M for cyber research, development

The Science and Technology Directorate issued a Broad Agency Announcement and four specific solicitations to get industry, academia and others thinking about how to improve cybersecurity. Over the next nine months, the agency will review white papers, proposals and make awards, with expectations of the development of commercial or open source projects in the next year or two.

Friday - 06/27/2014, 04:02am EDT
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