Signs of Progress, and Unfinished Business

Today’s jobs report shows that in May, the economy added 38,000 jobs. Despite job growth below expectations, the nation continues to recover from the Great Recession, with 75 consecutive months of uninterrupted private-sector job growth to the tune of 14.5 million jobs. The national unemployment rate in May inched downward to 4.7 percent.

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National Academy of Public Administration

Established in 1967 and chartered by Congress, the National Academy of Public Administration (the Academy) is a non-profit, independent coalition of top public management and organizational leaders who tackle the nation's most critical and complex challenges.

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Emerging Technology

GSA pilots AI for regulatory streamlining

Article | July 16, 2022

The General Services Administration plans to run an artificial-intelligence-based pilot program to help speed up how agencies procure innovative and commercial solutions. The pilot will use a combination of artificial intelligence, machine learning and robotic process automation to help GSA learn how to streamline the acquisition process, fast-track vendor selection timelines, simplify contract administration for innovative commercial items. FEDSIM is working with GSA’s Technology Transformation Service and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the sponsoring customer, to find a software-as-a-service solution that CMS regulatory staff can use to modernize regulatory workflows.

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Emerging Technology, Government Business

New funding now flowing to airports nationwide

Article | October 7, 2022

Another round of funding from by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will guarantee the launch of numerous projects at airports throughout the U.S. This particular grant program provides smaller funding amounts, but the funding can augment projects that are part of larger initiatives. U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao announced in July that more than $273 million in airport safety and infrastructure funding has been approved for 184 airports in 41 states and six territories. Program details can be found here for airport safety and infrastructure grants. The bulk of the funding, just over $242 million, is provided through the FAA’s Airport Improvement Program, while $31 million is a result of the recent Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This funding provides a 100 percent federal cost share for airport projects that fall into the category of infrastructure and/or safety. Projects of numerous types are eligible, but recently approved ones range from runway and taxiway construction to lighting improvements and master plan studies. And, most of the projects are slated to launch within the next year. Projections for increased airline travel in 2021 are strong, and pent-up demand will result in even more upcoming airport projects of all types. Florida Plans for a major renovation at Punta Gorda Airport are underway and will be enhanced by a grant allocation of $471,305. The FAA funding will cover the design phase for renovating the airport’s 7,193-foot-long runway. Construction is slated to begin in 2021. Punta Gorda Airport is off the Gulf Coast north of Fort Myers. Boca Raton Airport received a $694,444 federal grant to update its master plan. This upfront work will outline and prioritize airport improvement projects and expansion plans for the next two decades. Recent conversations have focused on new additions related to lighting, signage, taxiway and runway drainage, and other improvements. The 243-acre airport is in southern Palm Beach County. While Tampa International Airport didn’t receive funding in the most recent round of FAA grants, numerous upcoming projects have been announced. The projects are listed in the airport’s 2021 Proposed Budget. Among those is an elevator modernization project projected to cost approximately $7.4 million. It is slated for the airport’s main terminal. Another technology project covered by a fiscal year 2021 capital commodity plan has a cost allocation of $1.5 million, and an airside A&C shuttle car and control system replacement project totaling $13.2 million is anticipated in the near future. Miami International Airport is working on the solicitation for a new hotel with a 30- to 50-year lease agreement. As the nation’s second-busiest airport, officials hope to partner with a group to construct a “world-class” 350-room hotel. The plans call for the new hotel to be connected by a pedestrian bridge to Concourse D. Amenities will include a restaurant, business center, 20,000-square-foot meeting space for events, and a fitness center. California A small airport off Interstate 5 in northern California has been notified that it will receive funding for renovations. The Dunsmuir Municipal-Mott Airport was awarded $3.2 million to perform critical renovations to the runway and reconstructing the taxiway. City officials were pleased to announce that the airport runway, which has been in disrepair for some time, will now be completely refurbished and made safer. Arkansas Engineering and design work is nearing completion for a new $13 million terminal for Texarkana Regional Airport. The facility, which is located along U.S. 67 east of downtown Texarkana, received $3.6 million in FAA grant funding. Construction of the new terminal is just one part of a larger $34 million project for the airport. Missouri Columbia Regional Airport will extend one of its runways with the help of a $9.9 million federal grant. The Columbia City Council in March approved extending Runway 2-20 from 6,500 feet to 7,400 feet in order to be able to accept larger aircraft and also increase takeoff and stopping distances. City officials estimated the total cost of construction at $11 million, and the city has budgeted an additional $1.1 million for the runway extension project. This project will be launched in 2021. Louisiana Although airports in the state of Louisiana did not receive grant funding from the FAA, the Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport is working to finalize its master plan and has numerous projects already slated for the near future. Once the plan is completed, interested contractors will be able to find numerous and diverse improvement and expansion projects outlined. The airport is just south of Interstate 10 and Lake Pontchartrain. Oregon Hillsboro Airport has a $2.8 million construction project planned for early 2021. Officials have announced that a contractor will be selected to reconstruct almost the full length of Taxiway A and connect it to several other taxiways. The work will be performed in conjunction with the FAA and Port of Portland Operations. Georgia The city of Atlanta is scheduled to release a request for proposals (RFP) for on-call engineering services at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. An engineering firm will be selected to provide ground surveys in support of upcoming work that will be handled by the city aviation planning and development department. Atlanta’s airport held the distinction of being busier than any other airport in the U.S. in 2019. More than 110 million passengers passed through the airport either departing on or arriving back from airline flights. Although these most recent grant awards will not fund huge airport projects, the funding will enable the launch of thousands of smaller contracting opportunities. Mary Scott Nabers is president and CEO of Strategic Partnerships Inc., a business development company specializing in government contracting and procurement consulting throughout the U.S. Her recently released book, Inside the Infrastructure Revolution: A Roadmap for Building America, is a handbook for contractors, investors and the public at large seeking to explore how public-private partnerships or joint ventures can help finance their infrastructure projects.

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Government Business, Government Finance

Tech Trends that Affect Governments in 2022

Article | July 12, 2022

Governments and public authorities, like any other part of society, are vulnerable to technological disruption. Many of the issues confronting the government today stem from the fight to combat the global COVID-19 pandemic. Government institutions frequently discover that by employing tactics and strategies similar to those used by industry and the private sector, they, too, could learn to be more flexible and agile in their response. As a result, they have experienced a faster rate of digital transformation. Artificial intelligence (AI), the internet of things (IoT), and digital twins are now firmly on the agenda of governments and public bodies, whereas they were previously only on the roadmap. Many governments, particularly in more developed countries, have realized that they simply cannot afford to be complacent when there is so much potential for positive change. So, with that in mind, here's a rundown of some of the most significant tech trends affecting governments in 2022. Digital Identity: Biometric measures, can be used in identity schemes to link an individual as a physical entity to their digital identity. AI and Automation of Public Services: In the United States, federal, state, and local governments are all ramping up experiments with natural language processing (NLP) technologies to reduce customer friction. Cyber Security: Close monitoring of cyber security is a high priority for states. In 2021, the US government announced that it would assist businesses in defending themselves against nation-state attacks. National Cryptocurrencies: The benefits of cryptocurrency as a monetary system are clearly compelling enough to pique the interest of governments and central banks, but there are questions that must be addressed, particularly those concerning environmental costs and energy consumption, which may have political ramifications. The Rise of Govtech Start-ups: The field is now open for a new breed of start-up known as "govtechs" to bring fresh thinking to the challenge of driving the digital revolution in government. For example, in the United States, federal, state, and local governments are popular with services that received a high volume of calls during the pandemic. The above discussed trends are the five biggest tech trends transforming government in 2022.

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How Computer-Aided Design Is Used in Government

Article | June 24, 2020

Federal agencies design a wide range of tools, equipment, vehicles and even rockets. Computer-aided design (CAD) technology allows agencies and users to create digital designs more efficiently. CAD is used for a lot more than designing buildings, but is a basic building block of a more advanced tool known as Building Information Modeling, or BIM. CAD can be used to render 2D digital models of products, equipment and buildings. BIM takes those efforts to the next level and serves as a 3D design tool to “create and simulate how a building would operate,” says Andrew Friendly, associate vice president of government affairs at Autodesk, a leading CAD and BIM firm.

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Spotlight

National Academy of Public Administration

Established in 1967 and chartered by Congress, the National Academy of Public Administration (the Academy) is a non-profit, independent coalition of top public management and organizational leaders who tackle the nation's most critical and complex challenges.

Related News

Trump reverses course, says he’s not considering tax cuts, because of ‘strong economy’

cnbc | August 21, 2019

President Donald Trump insisted Wednesday that his administration will not cut taxes to turn aside an economic slowdown — only a day after he said he would consider tax policy changes. It follows several days of mixed messaging from the White House on whether it would respond to growing concerns about a potential recession. Trump has spent the week arguing the U.S. has the strongest economy in the world — while urging the Federal Reserve to chop interest rates, a step typically taken during cycles of economic weakness.

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Trump reverses course, says he’s not considering tax cuts, because of ‘strong economy’

cnbc | August 21, 2019

President Donald Trump insisted Wednesday that his administration will not cut taxes to turn aside an economic slowdown — only a day after he said he would consider tax policy changes. It follows several days of mixed messaging from the White House on whether it would respond to growing concerns about a potential recession. Trump has spent the week arguing the U.S. has the strongest economy in the world — while urging the Federal Reserve to chop interest rates, a step typically taken during cycles of economic weakness.

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