On July 30, the Senate passed the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Information Technology Reform Act, which would improve VA management of IT projects and investments, among other things.

Introduced by Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., in 2019, the bill passed without amendment by unanimous consent. The legislation will require the VA secretary to provide an update for the IT projects review process and provide an annual on covered IT projects, which are IT projects that VA estimates it “will expend or obligate $25 million or more for development and sustainment over a three-year lifecycle.”

Additionally, the legislation will require VA to provide a comprehensive list of all IT projects that VA is funding to appropriate committees of Congress and the VA CIO should provide an assessment of all IT investments to determine suitability of the investments for cloud migration.

The role of the CIO through this bill doesn’t end there. Among IT management policies, the role of the CIO must be addressed with key responsibilities, including:

  • IT strategic planning;
  • IT workforce;
  • IT planning, programming, and budgeting;
  • IT investment management; and
  • Innovations and emerging technologies.

The House of Representatives has yet to take up the bill.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.