Senator Carper Statement on Federal Chief Information Officer (CIO) Tony Scott

WASHINGTON – Today, Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), Ranking Member of the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, released the following statement after President Obama announced that he will appoint Tony Scott to be federal Chief Information Officer (CIO), Office of Management and Budget.

“Tony Scott has stepped up to take on a challenging job as our nation’s Chief Information Officer. His appointment comes at a critical time, as the federal government continues to struggle with managing its $80 billion information technology (IT) portfolio in an efficient and cost-effective manner,” said Sen. Carper. “Mr. Scott’s decades of private sector experience will be a critically important asset to the Office of Management and Budget and should help him as he oversees the federal government’s IT initiatives. Last year, I worked with my colleagues to address some of the nation’s IT challenges in the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act (FITARA), which was signed into law this past December. While passing FITARA was an important step, proper implementation is key to its success. It appears that Mr. Scott is up to that task. I look forward to working with him during FITARA’s implementation and learning more about his plan to develop and manage information technology across our federal government.”

FITARA builds on the statutory framework established by the seminal Clinger-Cohen Act of 1996 by enhancing agency CIOs’ authorities and strengthening key IT management initiatives.

  • CIO Authority Enhancements – Give civilian agency CIOs more authority over the budget, governance and personnel processes for agency IT investments. This, along with the corresponding empowerment of the CIO in the Department of Defense in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2015, would significantly enhance CIO’s role throughout the government.
  • Transparency & Risk Management – Make agency IT investments more transparent to the public and require agencies to review troubled investments.
  • Government-wide Software Purchasing – Require development of an enhanced government-wide software purchasing program that agencies may use to lower acquisition and management costs.
  • Portfolio Review – Require agencies to annually review all of their IT investments to eliminate duplication and waste.  For example, in fiscal year 2011 budget submissions, agencies reported 622 separate investments totaling $2.4 billion in human resource management systems, and 580 investments totaling $2.7 billion in financial management systems.
  • Data Center Consolidation – Require federal data centers to be consolidated and optimized to achieve greatest usage, efficiency and cost savings as recommended by GAO