This week's Weekly Debrief covers a number of interesting topics, including DoD's first enterprisewide data strategy, SpaceX's partnership with TRANSCOM, a contracting officer's bribery scheme, GSA's Polaris IT contract, COVID-19 relief fraud, and struggles at the IRS.
"The Defense Department unveiled a new data strategy Thursday aimed at transforming the Pentagon into a data-centric organization. The 11-page document is DOD’s first enterprisewide data strategy. It describes the broad vision for what good data management should look like across the Pentagon. Dana Deasy, the department’s chief information officer, said in a press release the strategy is a key component of the Pentagon's digital modernization effort."
"Transportation Command’s (TRANSCOM) inked a new partnership with SpaceX and XArc to study whether cargo, and people, could be rapidly transported to hot spots via spacecraft. It’s got both air power and space analysts shaking their heads — both in admiration and skepticism."
"A former federal contracting officer who oversaw the General Services Administration’s IT Schedule 70 was sentenced this week to nearly two years in prison after pleading guilty to federal bribery charges."
"The General Services Administration plans to increase the quality and diversity of IT available to agencies with a new governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC) geared toward small businesses. Named Polaris after the “guiding star” in the night sky, the contract will increase the pool of qualified small businesses that provide emerging technologies like artificial intelligence, blockchain and 5G gear, as well as areas such as robotic process automation, cybersecurity and cloud services.
"A Dallas-area man was charged in an indictment filed Thursday for his alleged participation in a scheme to file fraudulent loan applications seeking approximately $24.8 million in forgivable Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans guaranteed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act."
"As the IRS struggles to process a later than usual tax season and ongoing challenges with getting economic impact payments to every American, the constricted staffing at the agency has proven one of the central obstacles to improving operations."