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FCW : November 15, 2013
Trending unique visitors hit HealthCare.gov on its Oct. 1 launch day, according to comScore. 2.5 million November 15, 2013 FCW.COM 7 INK TANK The Internal Revenue Service deferred the beginning of tax- ling season until 50 of its data processing systems are programmed, tested and deployed --- a delay IRS of cials attributed to the government shutdown. A key House Republican, however, wants to know whether the change is real- ly related to the rollout of HealthCare.gov. In October, the IRS said it had to move the start date for accepting and pro- cessing 2013 returns from Jan. 21 to at least Jan. 28 because the 16-day shutdown came at one of the busiest times of the year for its IT managers. But Rep. Dave Camp (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, red off a letter to Acting IRS Commissioner Danny Wer- fel questioning the agency s decision and accusing it of "putting a higher priority on implementing ObamaCare than tending to its core mission" of processing tax returns. Camp said the agency coped with signi cant changes to the tax code last January in only a week. "It strains cre- dulity to believe that today, with absolutely no changes to the tax law --- 13 weeks away from the originally scheduled date --- the IRS can t make up 12 work days," Camp said. "This determination raises seri- ous questions about how the IRS actually allocated its resources during the shutdown." In a statement, IRS of cials said updating the agency s core systems "is a complex, year-round process with the majority of work beginning in the fall of each year." A nal decision on the start date is expected in December. The April 15 deadline for individuals to le tax returns remains in place. --- Mark Rockwell Is tax- ling delay tied to HealthCare.gov problems? Tech suppliers and contractors are pushing Congress to resolve the next budget impasse before Thanksgiving rather than risk another government shutdown in January that could drive some out of the federal space. Several key contracts skipped dead- lines or were otherwise delayed by the shutdown, including NASA s $20 billion Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Procurement V, the General Services Administration s $60 billion One Acqui- sition Solution for Integrated Serv- ices multiple-award contracts, and the Department of Homeland Security s Enterprise Acquisition Gateway for Leading Edge Solutions II contract. The delays and missed deadlines can be reworked, said Trey Hodgkins, senior vice president of the global pub- lic sector at TechAmerica, but the next looming budget deadline in January leaves a short window of opportunity for lawmakers and the president to work out their differences. "We don t want another [continuing resolution]," he said. More uncertainty could hasten the ow of experienced contracting per- sonnel into other lines of work. Some highly skilled tech workers, particularly cybersecurity professionals, are already nding jobs in the nancial sector. "The uncertainty is pushing them out the door," Hodgkins said. Some companies have moved workers from less lucrative positions on federal contracts to private-sector contracts that can bring in double the money or more. "Where they have been bringing in $100 an hour on government contracts, they may have been bringing in $250 an hour working on the commercial side," he said. "Why shift them back?" --- Mark Rockwell Contractors warn against another shutdown Rep. Dave Camp
October 30, 2013
November 30, 2013