Trade group wants IT modernization funding added to possible omnibus package
With federal appropriations set to expire on Friday, The Alliance for Digital Innovation urged Congress to include $100 million for the Technology Modernization Fund in any proposed budget deal.
With the deadline for a federal budget deal looming at the end of the week, a nonpartisan technology trade group is urging Congress to bake in an additional $100 million for the Technology Modernization Fund as well as increased appropriations for the Federal Citizen Services Fund.
The Alliance for Digital Innovation said in a letter sent to the heads of the Senate and House appropriations committees that both investments were critical, citing the outstanding number of 130 proposals for the TMF from 60 government agencies, and the need to properly fund the FCSF to support the Federal Risk and Management Program, or FedRAMP.
"ADI believes that the current FCSF funding levels lead to a budget for FedRAMP that is insufficient to meet the demand," the letter said.
The Dec. 9 correspondence is a follow-up to the funding wishlist ADI sent Congress in late May, which called for at least $300 million to go towards the TMF and nearly $116 million for FCSF, and comes as House and Senate appropriators negotiate a fiscal year 2023 omnibus bill ahead of a Dec. 16 deadline.
While the House included $100 million in its funding proposal, the Senate version of the bill does not include any additional funding for the TMF, which received a $1 billion cash infusion in the American Rescue Plan Act and has since supported a total of 33 projects across 18 agencies.
Senate appropriators — which have traditionally called for more spending oversight with regards to TMF — proposed to finance IT modernization projects through a different funding mechanism in July that would task the the General Services Administration and the Office of Management and Budget with budgeting for “government-wide initiatives, mainly tech projects” instead of the fund.
The White House originally requested $300 million to go towards the TMF and $115.8 million for the FCSF. The fund, which is operated within the General Services Administration, also received a $150 million plus up in the American Rescue Plan Act. ADI maintained its original request for nearly $116 million in its most recent letter to Congress, noting how the FedRAMP program has saved government agencies a total of $700 million and has accredited more than 245 cloud services and solutions.
The Senate version of the appropriations bill only includes $57.8 million for the FCSF.
“ADI encourages Congress to align with the House-passed funding for the FCSF, which would enable greater commercial technology access across agencies while maintaining a high bar for security,” the letter continued.
Both versions of the deal meet the administration's request to fully fund the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency with over $2.5 billion, which ADI said will aid CISA's efforts to help the government transition off legacy systems to the cloud.
The trade group also urged Congress to exceed the administration's 11 percent budget increase request for cybersecurity funding to federal civilian agencies, and called on appropriators to provide multi-year or no-year funding to agencies for their technology budgets.