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FCW : July 15, 2013
could be saved by capping executive compensation reimbursement in federal contracts at the U.S. vice president's salary level, GAO claims $440M inde nitely. The company is one of 16 ESCOs in DOE s Federal Energy Management Program. "We re actively developing those projects right now and proceeding as if [the DOE con- tract] will get resolved," he said. "If it doesn t, then we ve done a lot of work for nothing." No industry representatives contact- ed by FCW had seen any explanation from OMB for the hold. DOE of cials told FCW they had not received an explanation from OMB or a timeline for when a decision might come. OMB declined to answer questions, but a spokeswoman said OMB provides guid- ance to agencies regarding the imple- mentation of directives such as OMB s memo on the federal use of ESPCs and utility energy service contracts. The Government Accountability Office and congressional oversight committees have criticized OMB for its poor leadership and lack of met- rics in carrying out FDCCI, which OMB once promised would save the govern- ment several billion dollars. A recent GAO report states that FDCCI would achieve only $63 million in documented savings and cost avoidance by the end of scal 2013. In May, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, sent a letter to Obama calling for the increased use of ESPCs. Wyden speci cally urged OMB to approve "these and future projects in a timely manner in order to ensure that momentum continues toward achieving the $2 billion ESPC investment goal." "ESPCs are a good deal for govern- ment," Wyden wrote. "These projects save money by reducing the cost of energy and operations in federal build- ings, and they do not require any outlay of funds. For these reasons, I urge you to support a robust ESPC program and to reduce administrative barriers to the use of these contracts. In this time of serious budget constraint, I intend to do all I can to work with you in maximizing the use of performance contracting." --- Frank Konkel Energy-saving data center contract OMB issues new spending- data directive to agencies Federal agencies are being directed by the Of ce of Management and Budget to improve the quality of their public- facing nancial data in a move that mirrors one of the key provisions of a data transparency bill currently before Congress. The change requires agencies to establish unique identi cation num- bers for nancial awards and verify the accuracy of spending data against an of cial record of agency accounts. The policy update was announced in a June 12 memo from Deputy Controller Norman Dong to agency chief nancial of cers. Agencies have until October to attach Federal Award Identi cation Numbers to individual contracts. The numbers are intended to make it easier to report data and track sub-awards. By October, agencies must also come up with a way to validate data submitted to USASpending.gov, and they must be able to attest to a certain level of accu- racy, which the memo did not specify, by Nov. 15, 2014. Hudson Hollister, executive direc- tor of the Data Transparency Coali- tion, said the memo "seems to be the best that OMB can do without having a statutory framework." The Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, recently introduced in the House and Senate, similarly links reporting to nancial systems at the award level. The act also establishes unique identi ers for award recipients and differentiates between spending on personnel and contracts. Additionally, it moves oversight of USASpending.gov from OMB to the Treasury Department, a move that is included in the Obama administration s fiscal 2014 budget proposal. --- Adam Mazmanian July 15, 2013 FCW.COM 7 Trending TANK Continued from Page 4
June 30, 2013
July 30, 2013