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Democrats want TMF spending plan

A group of House Democrats sent a letter to the Biden administration on Tuesday asking how it plans to spend the $1 billion recently injected into the Technology Modernization Fund. “To ensure the most immediate and effective investment of the $1 billion TMF appropriation, we understood that the reimbursement model would need to be relaxed in the American Rescue Plan,” reads the letter from Democrats. “Although that requirement could not be retained in the budget reconciliation process, we strongly urge the administration not to let the reimbursement model atrophy during the expenditure of the investment made by the American Rescue Plan.” The letter was signed by Reps. Gerry Connolly, Va.; Carolyn Maloney, N.Y.; Eleanor Holmes Norton, Washington, D.C.; Katie Porter, Calif.; and Jamie Raskin, Md. Dave Nyczepir has more.

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Is telework here to stay?

Let's Talk About IT is back with a new episode on the future of telework in the government. Acting General Services Administrator Katy Kale joins the podcast to discuss her agency’s move to mass remote work, why it’s been successful and what’s next. She also talks about the future of federal office work from GSA’s perspective as the federal landlord. In the second segment, ThunderCat Technology CTO Kurt Steege gives his thoughts on the effectiveness of agencies during pandemic telework and whether he thinks they will sustain remote work when it’s safe enough to return to normal. Listen now.

Compliance remains a roadblock for DOD innovation

The Department of Defense's innovation ecosystem is growing in recent years but compliance regulations remain key roadblocks to even better progress, DARPA Director Stefanie Tompkins told senators Tuesday. In particular, those regulations make it hard for innovative small companies and universities to work with the DOD. "We will be looking for ways to sort of meet them in the middle and find ways to make it easier for them to participate and while still being fully compliant with our requirements," Tompkins told the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense. Jackson Barnett has this one.

GSA lends a hand

The General Services Administration wants to provide its expertise in support of the Technology Modernization Fund to help distribute the $1 billion it recently received under the American Rescue Plan Act. The agency hopes to "be of service along the way — whether it’s through our technology expertise, whether it’s through our acquisition expertise, whether it’s through our thought leadership in certain areas," Sonny Hashmi, commissioner of the Federal Acquisition Service, told FedScoop in an exclusive interview. "We will be available as a resource for those agencies to tap into in the most frictionless way possible." Dave has the exclusive.

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