May 26, 2020

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Tight Deadline to Get Esper Confirmed

Mark Esper

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The White House needs to work fast to install a permanent Pentagon chief, reports The Hill. Acting DefSec Mark Esper, the president’s pick for the top defense post, is not permitted to serve in his current role beyond July 30. Federal law known as the Vacancies Act prohibits officials from serving in acting capacities for more than 210 days.

US Navy officials said that the aircraft carrier Harry S. Truman and its strike group will embark on a third deployment in four years, reports Navy Times.

Lt. Col. Diosabelle Buack took command of Camp Casey, the last large military base occupied by US forces near the Korean Demilitarized Zone, reports Stars and Stripes.

The British Royal Air Force deployed two F-35 Lightning IIs to Italy for bilateral training with the Italian Air Force, reports Air Force Technology. The RAF F-35s from “The Dambusters” will operate from the Italian base in Amendola. Italian F-35s flew training flights with American and British F-35s over southern Italy on June 25, reports Defense News.

Aviator Robert J. Gilliland died July 4, reports The Commercial Appeal. He was the first person to ever pilot the iconic SR-71 Blackbird, earning him a place in the National Aviation Hall of Fame in 2017.

The US Air Force is turning to half-century-old refueling equipment to get its pilots off the flight lines and back up into the air quickly, reports The service has used hot refueling in recent years — a technique that fuels up a plane while its engines are on — in an effort to save time.

There have been 14 fatalities involving US Army vehicles this fiscal year, and eight of those have been from vehicle rollovers — a slight increase in the total number of fatalities, but a much larger increase in the number of rollover deaths specifically, reports Army Times.

A sailor climbs down the rigging of the USS Constitution while a large American flag waves behind him during the ship’s annual cruise in Boston Harbor to celebrate Independence Day, July 4, 2019. DoD photo by EJ Hersom

A new survey reveals almost half of the female cadets at the US Coast Guard Academy said they were sexually harassed, reports Navy Times, and about one in eight women reported experiencing unwanted sexual contact. The study, undertaken every two years, is based on anonymous surveys submitted from each service academy, according to Navy Times.

Navy SEAL Edward Gallagher, who was acquitted of killing a wounded Islamic State captive but convicted of posing with the corpse, was sentenced last week by a military jury to a reduction in rank and four months of confinement, reports The Associated Press.

Romania has chosen Naval Group of France to build four Gowind corvettes in a deal worth $1.4 billion, reports Defense News.

Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot has joined Gov. Larry Hogan Jr. and other GOP legislative leaders in promoting the idea of having 141 single-member districts in the state’s House of Delegates instead of the current system, which provides three members in each of 47 districts, reports Maryland Matters.

Dozens of new laws took effect July 1 in Maryland that will change your take-out food service with a ban on plastic foam cups and food containers, allow Johns Hopkins University to create the state’s first public police force at a college, establish a board that will cap prescription drug costs, allow breweries to serve more beer and boost child care tax credits, reports Patch.

A new Maryland law requires greater transparency in disclosing millions of dollars in fees paid by the state’s pension system to Wall Street investment firms, reports The Baltimore Sun. The Maryland State Retirement and Pension System has reported paying about $370 million annually in fees to the firms that invest its $51 billion in assets.

Lexington Park chef-turned-farmer Mike Mustard has teamed up with a Washington, DC, restaurateur to run a community supported agriculture in the city, reports WTOP radio station.


Construction Development Services Inc., Norfolk, Virginia (N40085-16-D-6348); Cram Roofing Co., San Antonio, Texas (N40085-16-D-6349); Gallaher Management Group Inc., Greenville, North Carolina (N40085-16-D-6350); Industrial Contract Service Corp., Wilmington, North Carolina (N40085-16-D-6351); Quality Roofers & Guttering Inc., Jacksonville, North Carolina (N40085-16-D-6352); and Service Disabled Contracting Group, Inc., Norfolk, Virginia (N40085-16-D-6353), are awarded a combined amount $50,000,000 firm-fixed-price modification to increase the maximum dollar value of indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award construction contracts for roofing construction services within the Marine Corps installations east area of responsibility. The work to be performed provides for replacement and installation of roofs and associated materials. Projects include roof repair and replacement of new and existing roofs.  Projects may require new construction, design, alteration or maintenance and repair of existing roofs. Roofs may be sloped or flat. After award of this modification, the total maximum dollar value for all six contracts combined will be $95,000,000. Work will be performed at Navy and Marine Corps installations at various locations including, but not limited to, North Carolina (90%); Georgia (3%); South Carolina (3%); Virginia (3%); and other areas of the U.S. (1%), and is expected to be completed by February 2021. No funds will be obligated at the time of award; funds will be obligated on individual task orders as they are issued. Future task orders will be primarily funded by operation and maintenance (Marine Corps); and military construction funds. The Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Mid-Atlantic, Norfolk, Virginia, is the contracting activity.

NCI Information Systems, Reston, Virginia, was awarded a $27,956,232 modification (P00005) to contract W91RUS-18-C-0017 for information technology services for cyber network operations and security support. Work will be performed in Fort Huachuca, Arizona, with an estimated completion date of June 30, 2020. Fiscal 2018 operations and maintenance, Army funds in the amount of $10,251,101 were obligated at the time of the award. US Army Contracting Command, Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

AECOM Management Services Inc., Germantown, Maryland, was awarded a $9,866,058 modification (P00144) to contract W58RGZ-16-C-0001 for aviation maintenance services and limited depot support. Work will be performed in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, with an estimated completion date of Dec. 29, 2019. Fiscal 2017, 2018 and 2019 operations and maintenance, Army; operations and maintenance, Army Reserve; and other procurement, Army funds in the combined amount of $9,866,058 were obligated at the time of the award. US Army Contracting Command, Redstone Arsenal, Alabama, is the contracting activity.

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