ExecutiveGov’s round-up of news you need to read to stay up to speed on federal policy impacting the government-contracting community.
Redefining Small Business?
The Washington Post reports the Small Business Administration is working to redefine what will qualify as a small business for contracting purposes.
The proposed change, which generally increases the maximum value of firms considered “small businesses,” will affect information technology, engineering and consulting-services companies, The Post reported.
Industry and its representatives, such as the Professional Services Council, have — so far — supported the move.
“You want to have the size standards large enough so small businesses can actually develop themselves,” said PSC Vice President for Government Relations Roger Jordan.
A Tech Fix to Prevent WikiLeak Redux?
In testimony before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the Intelligence Community’s information-sharing executive Corin Stone said the 17 member agencies of the IC are seeking the right balance between sharing sensitive data and protecting it.
And finding that “sweet spot,” as she put it, in a post-WikiLeaks world, will involve a host of technological solutions, Information Week reported. They include: better network authentication systems through identity and access management systems, data-loss-prevention techniques and end-to-end data management.
Contractors kept in Dark about Shutdown
Federal employees are not the only ones who will be affected by a government shutdown. Government contractors are also dependent on the influx of funding from congressional appropriations. However, as possible government shutdowns threaten, contractors are increasingly being left in the dark, Federal Times reports.
Federal Pinch Means Opportunity for Contractors
Former Virginia Congressman Tom Davis, who is now the director of Deloitte’s Federal Government Affairs division, said at a recent conference the penny pinching in the federal sector may be good news for contractors.
“They’ve got hiring freezes, they’ve got pay caps, they have all these other things,” he said, according to Federal News Radio. “They’re just not going to be able to attract the talent to come and try to do this stuff in-house … But at the end of the day, when they need solutions, they’re going to look to the private sector because that’s basically where the solutions are … I think there’s going to be plenty of opportunity, particularly in cost-cutting because government’s going to have to provide more with less.”
CR Cuts to Construction
Don’t expect to see as many orange barrels and cranes. According to a report in Federal Times, of the $6 billion in spending cuts Congress passed in the latest continuing resolution, about $1 billion was originally marked for federal construction.
The funding originally came from the budget for the General Services Administration — the federal government’s landlord.
Report Urges More Science Methods for Intel Community
A National Research Council report urges the Intelligence Community to adopt behavior and social scientific methods in the various intel agencies’ methods, collaborations and communications.
In addition, the report advises the Intelligence Community to better train intelligence analysts in evidence-based analytic methods “with strong scientific foundations.”