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Davis Puts IT Under New Subcommittee

House Government Reform Committee chairman Rep. Tom Davis (R.-Va.) has reorganized the committee to put IT issues under the purview of a new subcommittee. Rep. Adam Putnam (R-Fla.) will now handle IT issues through the Technology and Procurement Policy subcommittee.

Davis charged the new subcommittee with oversight responsibility for implementation of the E-Gov initiatives, the Federal Information Security Management Act and the Government Paperwork Elimination Act. The subcommittee is also considering a grading systems for federal agencies' compliance with IT directives and mandates passed by Congress.

In the previous legislative session, Putnam served as the vice chairman of the National Security, Veterans Affairs and International Relations subcommittee.

Davis, who sponsored the E-Gov Act of 2002, is expected to take an active role in the federal IT buying process.

"If our aim is to locate the biggest sources of waste in government, we need look no further than the hundreds of billions of dollars we spend each year on acquiring needed goods and services, or on ineffective, duplicative government programs. But too often we look for fat as though it came wrapped in neat, tidy packages; too often we cut off fingers and toes," Davis said. "The reality is that waste is marbled throughout the bureaucracy. It rests within regulations that never should have been written, in filling out forms that should not have been printed, in procurements so complex that our under-trained contracting officers cannot properly manage them."

The former vice president and general counsel for government IT contractor PRC, now a part of Northrup Grumman, Davis served as the chief elected officer of Fairfax County, the heart of the Northern Virginia technology corridor in the Washington suburbs, before being elected to Congress in the mid-1990's.

In addition to the E-Government Act, Davis also shepherded through Congress the Federal Information Security Management Act and the Critical Infrastructure Information Act. He serves as one of four co-chairs of the Information Technology Working Group, a group he founded to promote a better understanding of issues important to the computer and technology industries.

In May 1999 he sponsored the Y2K Act, legislation which ensured that businesses spent their money on Y2K compliance. He was the recipient of the Electronic Industry Alliance's 1999 Congressional Technology Policy Award and was inducted into the American Electronics Association's High Tech Hall of Fame in Spring 2000.