NewsBrief – March 10, 2023

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Cost Estimating NewsBrief: March 10, 2023

Costs on Porto’s Metro expansion rise 30% to £330M

(New Civil Engineer) Costs have risen by £74M (€84M) on a major project to expand the metro network in the Portuguese city of Porto. Portugal’s environment ministry confirmed earlier this week that the cost of building Porto Metro’s new Pink line and expanding the existing Yellow line had increased between 29% and 30%. The original cost estimates for the project were £256M (€288m) but the latest cost pressures will add on an additional £74M (€84M), according to Lusa news agency. According to reports, the increased costs have arisen due to supply chain inflation resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, the global energy crisis and the effects of war in Ukraine.Porto Metro’s current network includes six lines and 82 stations covering seven munic Read More

National Cyber Strategy seeks to ‘rebalance’ cyber responsibility towards industry

(Congressional Budget Office) CBO’s projections suggest that, over the long term, changes in fiscal policy would need to be made to address the rising costs of interest and mitigate other adverse consequences of high and rising debt. In coming decades, the aging of the population and rising health care costs will put increasing pressure on the federal budget. Revenues under current law will not keep pace with spending. Major trust funds will be exhausted within 10 years, reducing benefits for vulnerable people. Changes to both spending and revenues could be made in many ways. Undertaking new initiatives that were paid for would not improve the fiscal trajectory. The longer action is delayed, the larger the policy changes would need to be. Read More

The government’s financial statements are out and they’re not pretty

(Federal News Network) The government’s latest consolidated financial statements would give a normal CFO hives. Material control weaknesses, significant uncertainties, serious financial management problems. Those are words from the Government Accountability Office to explain why it can’t render an opinion on the whole thing. For more, the Federal Drive with Tom Temin with Robert Dacey, GAO’s Chief Accountant. Read More

GSA officials misled agencies about Login-dot-gov

(FCW) General Services Administration officials misled federal agencies over a period of years about its identity and authentication single sign-on service,, meeting government standards for identity proofing, according to a bombshell watchdog report released Tuesday. GSA officials included claims about meeting National Institute of Standards and Technology standards in interagency agreements, billed agencies over $10 million for services that purported to meet those standards – but did not – for years and included those false statements in its Technology Modernization Fund application as well. Read More

Space Force chief outlines 3-part ‘competitive endurance’ theory aimed at ‘space superiority’

(Breaking Defense) Chief of Space Operations Gen. Chance Saltzman today laid out a “theory of success” for the Space Force called “competitive endurance” — a three-part conceptual framework for service operations aimed both at deterring conflict in space and fighting “to achieve space superiority.” The term competitive endurance “is intended to capture the notion that we are in a state of competition with our pacing challenge” — that is, China — and that “remaining” in constant competition is “preferable to the alternative states of crisis or conflict,” he told the annual Air Force Association spring conference. “Endurance” and “managing the stability” in space “will require an active process of campaigning,” he added. Read More

A Bill to Protect Feds During Shutdowns Is Back, This Time With Debt Default Safeguards Too

(Government Executive) Democrats in the House and Senate last week proposed a measure aimed at protecting federal employees from financial consequences if their paychecks are interrupted by political brinkmanship in the form of a government shutdown or debt default. Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, and Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Wash., have reintroduced the Federal Employees Civil Relief Act (S. 640). The bill, first introduced in 2019 amid the 35-day partial government shutdown, protects federal workers and contractors from a variety of civil financial penalties during a lapse in appropriations or a breach of the debt ceiling. Read More

NASA Identifies Star With Two Potentially-habitable Planets Orbiting it

(Nextgov) NASA recently announced the discovery of a new, Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a nearby star called TOI-700. We are two of the astronomers who led the discovery of this planet, called TOI-700 e. TOI-700 e is just over 100 light years from Earth – too far away for humans to visit – but we do know that it is similar in size to the Earth, likely rocky in composition and could potentially support life. You’ve probably heard about some of the many other exoplanet discoveries in recent years. In fact, TOI-700 e is one of two potentially habitable planets just in the TOI-700 star system. Read More

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