Officials ponder FedBizOpps fee<@VM>Charbo new Agriculture CIO<@VM>Agencies list joint IT projects

Federal officials are considering whether to charge contractors to use the FedBizOpps e-mail notification feature. is the government's Web portal for federal procurement opportunities worth more than $25,000. Contractors use the portal to search for job opportunities, and through a new feature can receive e-mail notification of opportunities in select categories.

The fee would be no more than $30 a year, said David Drabkin, deputy associate administrator in the General Services Administration's Office of Acquisition Policy.

The Office of Management and Budget has not yet approved the policy. If officials go forward with the proposal, GSA would probably use the Federal Acquisition Regulation rulemaking process to allow FedBizOpps users an opportunity to comment, Drabkin said.Scott Charbo began work Aug. 26 as the new chief information officer at the Agriculture Department. His appointment still needs Senate confirmation. He will oversee management of the department's information technology assets, including more than 4,000 employees and physical assets worth $1.7 billion.

Charbo took over for Deputy CIO Ira Hobbs, who had served as acting CIO for 18 months.Federal agencies have identified 14 additional projects for which participants will work across agency lines to develop business cases and the resulting IT systems, according to an Aug. 26 memo from the Office of Management and Budget.

New joint business cases include the Immigration and Naturalization Service's entry-exit system, used to track foreigners' arrival and departures from the United States, and, a portal that will link agencies with volunteers in areas such as national parks.

The memo from OMB official Mark Forman said OMB expects to identify opportunities for additional joint business cases through its analysis of all federal IT business cases.

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