FCW Insider: Dec. 4

Top stories, quick hits and more from FCW's reporters and editors.

The Defense Department's $8 billion office enterprise cloud procurement is on a tight timeline, with a solicitation expected to hit the street in February. But there's still skepticism about whether defense customers will go for a centralized, cloud-based solutions for basic back-office software. Lauren C. Williams reports from the DEOS Industry day.

The IRS is laying the groundwork for a series of relatively small-dollar pilot projects over the next year to flesh out its IT modernization priorities. Derek B. Johnson has the story.

The Department of Homeland Security is looking to small business to help improve capabilities in a range of technology areas, including identity management, blockchain forensics, biometrics, cybersecurity and machine learning for scanners. Mark Rockwell has more.

The National Archives and Records Administration is seeing a spike in comments on routine -- some might even say tedious -- records dispensation notices. Chase Gunter explains.

Quick Hits

*** The Office of Personnel Management announced its final six locality pay areas for 2019.

Four original proposed pay areas — Birmingham-Hoover-Talladega, Ala.; Burlington-South Burlington, Vt.; San Antonio-New Braunfels-Pearsall, Texas; and the Virginia Beach-Norfolk area spanning Virginia and North Carolina — were confirmed, as were two additional areas recommended by the Federal Salary Council and approved by the President’s Pay Agent.

The two additional areas are the Corpus Christi-Kingsville-Alice, Texas, area, as well as the Omaha-Council and Bluffs-Fremont combined metro area that includes parts of Nebraska and Iowa.

OPM estimates the six new locality pay areas will impact about 70,000 federal employees. The changes will apply to the first pay period of January.

*** The IRS added a new social account. The dry, just-the-facts tax agency is make a go on Instagram in an effort to meet young taxpayers where they live. Since its Nov. 30 debut on the platform, the IRS has attracted just over 2,300 followers.

The move to Instagram, "will help make people aware of important options they have during the upcoming filing season as well as other tax information they might not be aware" Commissioner Chuck Rettig said in a statement.

*** The Government Publishing Office is making congressional documents easier to access in bulk online. Final copies of bills and laws dating back to 2013, as well as statutes-at-large going back to 2003, will be available in XML format, allowing users to more easily download large sets of documents and access them on mobile, as opposed to having to download files individually.

GPO collaborated with the Office of the Clerk of the House, the Office of the Secretary of the Senate, and the Office of the Federal Register on the transition.