Chertoff increases DHS CIO's authority

Michael Chertoff, Homeland Security Department secretary, this morning unveiled a plan to give significant new powers to the department's CIO.

"Later today, I am issuing a management directive to enhance the authority of CIO Scott Charbo," Chertoff said in a speech this morning.

The department CIO will gain new authority under the directive including:
  • Approval power over the budgets of other CIOs within the department, who will now be required to submit their budgets to Charbo;
  • Authority over the hiring and pay levels of CIOs in the DHS directorates; and
  • Approval power over other CIOs' IT investment projects.

DHS technology investments already require approval by the department's centralized investment review procedure, but this will consolidate Charbo's power within that process.

"This unification and strengthening of core management will not be easy for some components," Chertofff said.

After the morning meeting of the Northern Virginia Technology Council, Charbo said he would continue previously announced projects, including consolidating the department's fleet of 17 major data centers into two, unifying DHS e-mail and consolidating networks.

Wilson P. Dizard III is a staff writer for Government Computer News, an 1105 Government Information Group publication.

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