PORTLAND — A Somali-born teenager plotted to carry out a car bomb attack at a crowded Christmas tree lighting ceremony Friday in downtown Portland, but the bomb was a dud supplied by undercover agents as part of a sting, federal prosecutors said.Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, was arrested at 5:40 p.m. just after he dialed a cell phone that he thought would blow up a van laden with explosives but instead brought federal agents and Portland police swooping in to take him into custody.Mohamud yelled “Allahu Akhkbar” and tried to kick agents and police as the arrest came, according to prosecutors.He was charged with attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.U.S. Attorney Dwight Holton released federal court documents Friday that show the sting operation began in June after an undercover agent learned that Mohamud had been in contact with an “unindicted associate” in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier region.Mohamud is a naturalized U.S. citizen who has been living in Corvallis.According to a federal complaint, Mohamud was in regular email contact with the “unindicted associate’ in Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier starting in August 2009.The complaint said that in December 2009 Mohamud and the “unindicted associate” used coded language in an email in which the FBI believes Mohamud discussed traveling to Pakistan to prepare for “violent jihad.”The document says in the months that followed Mohamud made “multiple efforts” to contact another “undicted associate” to arrange travel to Pakistan but had a faulty e-mail address for that person.
PORTLAND — Police say two men were shot and wounded Tuesday evening in downtown Portland and one of them has been taken into custody.Sgt. Pete Simpson says preliminary information indicates that both men live in the same building and the dispute between them may have been a robbery. Witnesses tell police there was a disturbance in a parking lot behind the building and the victim ran to a nearby Safeway store entrance to wait for medical help. He was shot in the leg.Officers located the suspect, who also had a gunshot wound to the leg, and took a handgun from him. Simpson says it’s possible that man accidentally shot himself.Both men were taken to hospitals for treatment.Robbery detectives are investigating.
Clark County Commissioner David Madore on Wednesday suggested cutting off county funding to the Southwest Washington Regional Transportation Council, citing a “continuous track record of the RTC dismissing the leadership of the county.”In an email to RTC Executive Director Matt Ransom, Madore said he supports a policy to “significantly reduce” the dues that the county pays to the regional planning agency in the coming year. A total of 21 jurisdictions pay membership dues to RTC each year. Clark County pays the largest amount of any agency, slated to be $36,300 in 2015. That’s about 2 percent of RTC’s overall budget of $1.7 million next year.It’s unclear what impact cutting those dues would have on the county’s standing as an RTC member. Ransom could not be reached for comment.Madore didn’t cite specifics in his notification to Ransom, and couldn’t immediately be reached for comment. But during last week’s RTC board meeting, Clark County was passed over for both the chair and vice chair positions on the board.
Coca-Cola is to extend paid parental leave for male and female employees in the US.From January 2017, all new parents will be eligible for six weeks’ paid parental leave, including adoptive and foster parents.The new policy will be in addition to the six to eight weeks of paid parental leave available to birth mothers via short-term disability. It will also sit alongside existing health and flexible workplace benefits that aim to support work-life balance.Coca-Cola aims to help close the gender gap at home and in the workplace by introducing a policy that supports both male and female staff.The introduction of the policy follows support from Coca-Cola’s Millenial Voices, a group of young employees that work to encourage change that can aid the organisation’s attraction and retention of millennial employees and customers. Internal surveys and external research demonstrated that the average age at which university-educated individuals in the US become first-time parents is 30, which is the median age of Coke’s current and prospective millennial employees. The organisation expects millennials to account for more than half of its global workforce by 2020.Ceree Eberly, chief people officer at Coca-Cola, said: “Fostering an inclusive workplace means valuing all parents, no matter their gender or sexual orientation. We think the most successful way to structure benefits to help working families is to make them gender-neutral and encourage both mums and dads to play an active role in their family lives.“Paid parental leave provides time off for parents to truly bond with their new child. We feel it’s important for all new parents to take time off, so that when they return to work, they’re refreshed, less stressed and at their best, focused, engaged and productive.”
On 9 January 2017, prime minister Theresa May announced a package of measures that aim to improve mental health support in the UK at each stage of a person’s life, including in workplaces, schools, and the community.As part of this wider reform, Lord Dennis Stevenson, a mental health campaigner, and Paul Farmer CBE, chief executive officer at charity Mind and chair of the NHS Mental Health Taskforce, will lead a review into mental health practices in the workplace, examining how best to support employees with mental health problems so that they can thrive and excel at work.This will include the provision of tools to help employers of all sizes support employee wellbeing, and a review of recommendations around workplace discrimination on the grounds of mental health.A key aspect of the review will be to share best-practice examples of mental health support for employees, with trailblazing organisations highlighting initiatives they have in place.Learning from the experience of others will be particularly valuable for smaller organisations, said Louise Ward, policy and standards director at the British Safety Council. While larger organisations may have more resources to acquire expert advice and invest in training, smaller businesses may not always have this opportunity. “If [a small organisation] can get information from something that is working well somewhere else and employ that in [its] own organisation, it’s got a chance to make a real difference,” Ward added.These mental health reforms are also an opportunity to tackle the stigma associated with mental health, said Poppy Jaman, chief executive officer at Mental Health First Aid England and programme director at the City Mental Health Alliance.Sharing mental health best practice may have been frowned upon in the past because employers may have been concerned about damaging their organisation’s reputation by being seen as a stressful or mentally unhealthy workplace. However, the increasing normalisation of mental health conversations is slowly shifting attitudes and workplace culture, to show best practice in this area as an asset rather than something to hide, added Jaman.Yet challenges remain. Louise Aston, wellbeing director at Business in the Community (BITC), said: “My concern is that the reforms as they stand don’t go far enough […] There is a growing movement of employers which are committed to this agenda and that are demonstrating leadership in this area, but there is also a massive group of unengaged employers that are [not]. So, in spite of the compelling business case and moral case and some real kind of proven good practice, the question is how do we engage those challenged sectors and individual [organisations]?”The journey to fully embedding mental health into the organisational culture can take time. “The key here is about really strong leadership, making a commitment to putting mental and physical health on a parity, and providing relevant training to all employees,” added Aston.
EXCLUSIVE: Approximately nine in 10 (91%) employer respondents provide life assurance or death in service, according to research by Employee Benefits and Staffcare.The Employee Benefits/Staffcare Benefits research 2017, which surveyed 271 employer respondents in February-March 2017, also found that the majority of respondents that offer life assurance or death in service do so as a core benefit for all staff (86%).This was also the main method by which respondents offered these benefits in 2016 (87%), although the overall proportion of respondents that include death in service and life assurance in their benefits offering in some way has risen by seven percentage points over the last year.Life assurance has consistently been one of the top core benefits offered by respondents since the inaugural Benefits research in 2004, topping the list that year as well as in 2007, 2010, 2011 and 2013.The proportion of respondents offering this benefit has also risen over time. For example, in 2007, 62% offered life assurance as core to all staff and 17% to some staff. By 2013, this had risen so that 76% of all respondents organisations’ included life assurance within their core benefits offering for all employees, and 15% did so for some staff.This year, the proportion of respondents that offer personal insurances remains broadly in line with 2016, the way in which these benefits are being offered has changed.Over a third (34%) of respondents’ organisations offer travel insurance as an employee benefit. The proportion of respondents offering travel insurance that include it within their voluntary benefits programme has also increased, rising from 22% in 2016 and 37% in 2017. When respondents were asked which benefits they included within their voluntary benefits scheme back in 2011, 12% listed travel insurance, rising to 18% in 2014. Read the full Employee Benefits/Staffcare Benefits research 2017.
BISCAYNE BAY, Fla. (WSVN) — Crews worked to put out a fire that sparked on a boat in Biscayne Bay.Miami-Dade Fire Rescue responded to the scene after flames sparked from the engine room of the boat, south of the Broad Causeway, west of Indian Creek.They provided 7News with pictures and were able to put the fire out.Three people were on board, but no one was injured in this case.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
DORAL, FLA. (WSVN) – A 3-year-old and her family are expressing their gratitude to the relatives of the man who donated an organ to her.Friday marked a reunion that the two families would not forget. The organ donor and organ recipient’s family met for the first time, but they already have a bond that extends beyond words.Three years ago, 23-year-old Kenneth Romero died from an asthma attack. “He was an amazing, an amazing person,” said Ruth Romero, the donor’s sister.She administered CPR, but was unable to save him. Kenneth’s organs were donated, which changed five lives, including that of 3-year-old Deanna Anderson.“I have a mixture of emotions right now, but I want to put her in a little bubble and keep her safe,” Romero said.Deanna suffered from a liver disease that left her sick and constantly hospitalized. “A week before we got the call, we thought we were gonna lose her,” said Deanna’s mother, Heidi Anderson.She was just 7 months old at the time, but it was drastically changed when she received Kenneth’s liver. “She’s very outgoing. She loves to dance. She loves school,” Anderson said. “Looking at her, I want everyone to know that this is organ donation.”Stories of hope like this is why dozens gathered on Friday at the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue headquarters to raise awareness and celebrate National Donate Life Blue and Green Day.“You are grateful every day,” said organ recipient Maria Gamboa, “because if it’s not for the decision of this person, you are not here.”Recipients like Gamboa said that while they have a sense of gratitude, there’s now a feeling of responsibility to spread the word and encourage others to donate. “Heaven doesn’t need organs,” Anderson said. “We need them on earth.”April is National Organ Donation Month. Currently, 100,000 adults and children are waiting for the call stating that they have received the donation they need.To donate, go to Donate Life America at https://www.donatelife.net/Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
(WSVN) – The photo above is drawing plenty of attention on social media.A man in Canada is seen mowing his lawn when a twister moves near his home.He says the tornado was actually farther away from him than it appears in the photo and that he kept an eye on it the whole time.No one was hurt by the storm.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) – A South Florida business went up in flames, Wednesday.Fire broke out at a Payless shoe store near Northwest 11th Street and Seventh Avenue in Northwest Miami-Dade.Fire rescue crews quickly arrived at the scene.The flames caused some damage to the building.It remains unknown if anyone was injured.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) – Police are seeking the public’s help in identifying a person of interest in an attempted murder in Northwest Miami-Dade.Miami-Dade Police said they want to talk to Victor Cardenas. Officials believe he had some involvement in the Dec. 17 crime.Investigators said the incident took place the area of Northwest 67th Street and 18th Avenue.Surveillance video shows a man believed to be Cardenas running after a man on a bicycle while holding a gun.If you have any information on this incident or Cardenas’ whereabouts, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
WESTON, FLA. (WSVN) – – A math teacher at Cypress Bay High School has been charged for allegedly having an inappropriate relationship with a minor.Vincent Edwards Grossi, 53, stood before a judge on Thursday morning facing the charge of soliciting a romantic relationship as an authority figure.He taught math at the high school, but he was reassigned from his position while the Broward County Public School Board investigates.Grossi allegedly sparked the relationship with a 16-year-old student in October 2018 that lasted approximately three weeks.“Just to know that a teacher has done this, it kinda makes me sick,” a student said.The arrest report stated, “The victim said that during several occasions, the defendant would grab her buttocks from above her clothing as they kissed. The victim said that the defendant covered the window on the classroom door to ensure that no one else could see inside.”According to the arrest report, the victim confessed that Grossi changed her grades on multiple occasions and was given special treatment. “He definitely seemed kinda off, like kinda creepy with everybody and kinda touchy,” student Fabrizio Giolito said.Grossi’s bond was set at $5,000 and given a stay away order from the the victim. He will also have to wear an ankle monitor.“For me to think that somebody can do something to her, it’s just crazy,” student Oswaldo Fuennayor said. “I mean, it goes out of my mind what people are capable of.”Investigators with the Broward Sheriff’s Office said other female students have alleged inappropriate behavior by Grossi.He has worked at several other schools including Plantation High School, Western High School and McNicol Middle School.BCPS said they are investigating the incident.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
What:Celebrating the Slogan Gown trend in a one-of-a-kind dress made by ISA Couture Fabrics — while exploring Miami’s famed Little Havana.Why:Words mean something — it’s a phrase that I live by, especially as a journalist. I pour over thousands and thousands of them a week; creating, crafting, writing and rewriting stories. Not just for television and #FavoriteThings, but in life, too. Intimate exchanges, friendly hello’s, meaningful conversations, spirited debates and heated arguments. Words are everything.As a writer, they’re my sanctuary, my therapy, my comfort. The gift of self-expression in written form is a skill I’ve been honing since grade school. Back in the day, I wrote monster stories, alien stories, love stories and eventually human interest stories — which led me to journalism and now, blogging.Words are an expression of our inner-most thoughts, feelings and emotions. They share joy, pain, sadness, empowerment and if you truly fall in love with them, they become art via poems, books, movies and oration. Yes, I am and will always be a “Wordy Woman”…That’s why I can’t resist the latest haute couture fashion trend known as “Slogan Gowns.” The idea was birthed by Viktor & Rolf at this year’s Paris Fashion week. Big, beautiful ball gowns floated down the runway, featuring words & phrases like: “I’m not shy I just don’t like you,” “I am my own muse,” and “No photos please.” The slogan trend isn’t exactly new, especially with the whole “say how you really feel” on a T-shirt craze — which has exploded over the past decade.Not to be outdone by sayings on coffee cups, purses, gym bags, shoes — the list goes on. This day and age, it’s all about expressing yourself and no word or saying is off-limits, especially if you add a hashtag. I’m partial to the “Slogan Gown” trend because of its quirky, unexpected nature. Pulling the look off isn’t easy, but with the help of ISA Couture Fabrics, originality is not a problem…The boutique isn’t just a South Florida staple, it’s the best couture fabric store in Miami. Not only is it a family-owned business with more than 50 years experience; its owners, Jason & Jackie Castro, are working hard to modernize the way people understand & utilize fabric, hence the DALE’ dress. They created it to celebrate the “Slogan Gown” trend, adding a unique Miami spin. Combining exquisite tulle and organza, they layered the dress with tropical personality. The detachable train gives it just the right amount of sophisticated drama. If you’re thinking “WOW, that’s a lot of dress,” well, that’s kind of the point. ISA Couture Fabrics can help any fashionista stand out in a crowd and that’s no easy task in a city that eats and breathes head-turning fashions.Whether they’re customizing a special dress or elevating textiles for local, national and international designers, ISA Couture Fabrics is doing it like no other place in the Magic City. And, instead of just writing about it, this time I’m wearing it, too and that’s why “Wordy Woman” is one of my Favorite Things. DALE’!Where:ISA Couture Fabrics200 NE 30th StreetMiami, Florida 33137isafabrics.comBe Social:IG: @isacouturefabricsFB: @isacouturefabricsTwitter: @IsaCoutureMiami“I like good strong words that mean something.” — Louisa May Alcott, Little WomenJames Woodley PhotographyDale Dress by @isacouturefabricsearrings: @baublebarSunglasses @amazonfashionBooties: @mackinj_shoesHair & Make-up: Odett HernandezDigital Editor: Jessie Neft-SwingerEditor: Matthew “Wordsmith” Auerbach Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Wig Wag‘s 1988 launch came within a month of Spy’s, but the latter is better remembered. Spy is memorialized in books and on Web sites, it’s editors have gone on to successful publishing careers, and you still hear its name mentioned in magazine and design circles. Wig Wag has (arguably been)nearly as influential, but it lives on (as far as I can tell) only as a brief Wikipedia entry and a few other scattered web references.There are lots of reasons for this. Spy was the louder and brasher magazine—it cheerfully went about making enemies among New York’s rich and powerful. Spy’s editorial and design influences were more varied and harder to pin down than Wig Wag’s (which was clearly directly influenced by the New Yorker where the editor and many of the staff had worked). And, Wig Wag’s post-modern pages have not aged nearly so well as Spy’s. The specific visual language Spy pioneered live on in dozens of magazines including New York, Vanity Fair and Radar. Wig Wag’s impact is not seen in a few easily identified tropes such as Spy’s disembodied floating heads. But, Wig Wag was equally ahead of its time. It took the New Yorker’s sophisticated news and and literary approach and used it to create a visual magazine in the contemporary sense-it used infographic conventions for literary storytelling, achieving an integration of imagery and text that was rare for its day, but has since become expected. Wig Wag’s methods are now visible in most large newsstand magazines—Wired, New York (again) Maxim and lots more.Editor Lex Kaplen and Art Director Paul Davis saw graphic possibilities for a literary magazine that are still unequaled by the graphically fumbling New Yorker—which has successfully updated its art direction and writing but now seems awkwardly stuck between its storied typographical tradition and current fashion—publishing a design that is neither classic nor engaging to a contemporary reader.Check out images of the interior sections—including the T.O.C. and fiction layouts—here.[Editor’s note: For more intelligent design talk, buy Jandos’ new book.]
8020 Media, a publisher heralded for its community-driven editorial model, is shutting down. Here’s the memo from CEO Mitchell Fox (via NYT Bits):In the face of these extraordinary economic times, in a devastated advertising climate, we can no longer continue to operate the business due to lack of funds, and hence we have to close 8020 Media effective immediately.There is no doubt that our company has done what no others have yet to do…that is, prove that the web and print can work effectively together, one supporting the other.We’ve also proven that community generated media CAN be a powerful thing…and it can create spectacular media. The riddle of having a sound web platform support that drives interactivity with a print product has been solved, however, none of us could have predicted the global economic collapse we’ve witnessed in the past few months. So our timing to grow the business and bring it to profitability through even the smallest amount of additional funding could not have been worse.So, while we sit here at the precipice of profitability, the negative marketplace forces are too strong to overcome, and we must take this regrettable action.It remains undeniable that the publishing industry MUST find a new model, and mass collaboration and participation in the media property is certainly now proven it can be the foundation of this new model (NOTE: This is NOT citizen journalism).We’ve cracked the code on marshaling a community around a media property online and in print….and helping them become active , loyal, and engaged participants in both.We do owe a debt of thanks to Minor Ventures for believing in us, and funding us to this point and to have even given us a chance to make this business successful, and for that confidence we’ll always be grateful.
I was talking to a CEO this morning and we touched on the stunning twin news flashes from today: VSS is predicting the first two-year decline in ad spending in 75 years, and fourth quarter 2008 BIN numbers were off by more than 13 percent. He predicted that the first quarter numbers will certainly be worse. (By the way, why the heck can’t those BIN numbers be more up-to-date? The Publishers Information Bureau gets its numbers out much faster, and most b-to-b publishers have already closed our final numbers for Q1 by now. Reporting Q4 on February 24 seems just a tad late.)We both acknowledged how bad it is for the industry right now. I said it feels like the worst I’ve been through, and he agreed, but then he said: “We always say that.”So my question is this: Is this recession worse? And if it is, why? Over a three-year period from 2001 to 2003, b-to-b media lost about 35 percent of its revenue, according to the Business Information Network. During that period, it was common around the industry for conference speakers and writers to describe it as the “worst media-industry downturn since the Great Depression.”After awhile, we all took that as a given, though no one I know ever went back and actually analyzed the extent of that downturn compared with earlier ones.I also remember the 1991 downturn. That was tough, even for someone who was a junior editor at the time. There were the usual rounds of painful layoffs. I remember one day when at least six editors I worked with made the terrible walk to the corner office one by one, undoubtedly knowing their certain fate. And that ‘90s recession lasted a long time. It wasn’t until 1995 when things were really humming again in the magazine world.
Three regional magazine publishers have reported layoffs.Texas Monthly publisher Emmis Communications eliminated 91 full-time and 14 part-time positions, or about 7.5 percent of its overall workforce, across its corporate, radio and publishing divisions. Remaining employees will have their salaries reduced by 5 percent.“Facing the ongoing challenges of a struggling media sector and turbulent economy, Emmis took a series of steps to better position it for shifting global and industry realities,” a spokesperson wrote in an e-mail to FOLIO:. The spokesperson declined to say how exactly how many people were let go from the publishing division. Last November, Emmis slashed corporate salaries by 3 percent for employees who earn more than $50,000 per year, and cut about 29 full-time and six part-time positions from its radio business—or about 4 percent of the overall workforce. In August, the Emmis eliminated 4.5 percent of its workforce—about 40 positions—from its magazine publishing division and lowered remaining employee salaries by 2 percent.In Dallas, Texas, the company that owns D magazine laid off 12 staffers, or about 12 percent of its overall workforce, executive editor Tim Rogers wrote in a blog post. The cuts were made at D and its ancillary magazines: D Home, D CEO, D Weddings and D Beauty.The cuts come a little more than three months after the publisher laid off 29 staffers, which at the time represented about 19 percent of its workforce. “When we retrenched in November, we made our cuts based on what we thought at the time was a fairly pessimistic view of how the economy would hold up in 2009,” Rogers wrote in the post. “Reality has proven that we were actually not pessimistic enough.”Meanwhile, Rockport, Maine-based Down East Enterprise Inc.—publisher of Down East magazine—said “about a half dozen” employees were laid off as part of a restructuring, or about 12 percent of its workforce. President Bob Fernald cited the a decline in real estate advertising and the company’s recent sale of Performance Media LLC, publisher of Speedway Illustrated magazine, as reasons fur the cuts.About a dozen more employees will have their workweek reduced or be shifted to “independent-contractor status,” the company said. Down East also publishes Fly Rod & Reel and Shooting Sportsman magazines.
Several parties have submitted official declarations of interest to the Washington Post Company in regard to a potential acquisition of ailing Newsweek magazine. Although a company spokesperson declined to say exactly how many notifications were submitted prior to Wednesday’s deadline, Newsmax Media, private equity firm OpenGate Capital and Ritchie Capital Management founder Thane Ritchie all confirmed separately that they were among those that did.In a statement e-mailed to FOLIO:, conservative monthly Newsmax confirmed its contact with the Washington Post Co., stating that its interest in acquiring Newsweek “is congruent with its objective to diversify and expand into numerous distinct media brand offerings.” Newsmax said that if its bid is successful it would not shut liberal-leaning Newsweek down. “Newsweek’s staff, advertisers and readers can be assured that … [the magazine’s] stellar brand and editorial representation would remain distinct from our other brands.”Also among those who submitted a formal declaration is private equity manager Thane Ritchie, his spokesperson said in an e-mail. Last year, Ritchie unsuccessfully attempted to acquire the Sun Times Media Group. And according to the Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles-based private equity firm OpenGate Capital is in the mix for Newsweek, too. OpenGate managing partner Andrew Nikou, who indicated to FOLIO: several weeks ago that the firm would be making a bid for Newsweek, did not immediately return a request seeking comment.OpenGate is arguably most noted for acquiring the print edition of TV Guide from Macrovision in 2008 for just $1. Since then, the firm has been active in 2010, announcing three additional acquisitions through April.Others who may also have contacted the Washington Post Co., including editor-in-chief John Meacham and entertainment industry billionaire Haim Saban, could not be reached for comment.The Washington Post Co. said last month that it had hired media and entertainment investment bankers Allen & Company to explore a sale of ailing Newsweek, which is expected to continue losing money this year. In 2009, Washington Post Co.’s magazine division, (which also included Budget Travel, until it sold in December) reported an operating loss of $29.3 million.Presumably, the next step is for the interested parties to sign non-disclosure agreements in order to take a deeper look at Newsweek’s business.
Dan Cohen AUTHOR The office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) held a ribbon cutting last week at a Bethesda, Md., campus that will house about 3,000 intelligence community employees.The Bethesda site had been the home of offices for the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency until 2011 when the agency moved to what is now NGA Campus East at Fort Belvoir, Va. The 2005 round of BRAC called for the agency to consolidate multiple sites, primarily in the Maryland and Virginia suburbs of Washington, to Fort Belvoir.By preserving existing structures, the new intelligence facility in Bethesda was built for about 60 percent of the cost of new construction, reported Government Executive. The new building is a “sleek glass façade that wraps around the three pre-existing buildings to create a unified modern structure that centralizes and efficiently distributes mission services,” according to ODNI. A six-story parking garage also was built on the campus, which houses ODNI’s National Counterintelligence and Security Center, the National Intelligence University and the Defense Intelligence Agency.“This facility is — in so many ways — the physical manifestation of ‘intelligence integration,’” Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said at the ribbon cutting.
Dan Cohen AUTHOR A new BRAC round could save the Defense Department as much as 25 percent of the cost of some missions, Jamie Morin, director for the Pentagon’s office of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation, said Monday at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.But without Congress’ assent, DOD will be unable to reap the savings from eliminating unneeded infrastructure and succeed in its cost-cutting reforms.“So it’s not a popular answer, but base realignment and closure is an important piece of this,” he said, reported Defense News.Last week, Pete Potochney, acting assistant secretary of defense for energy, installations and environment, said the department estimates it could save $2 billion annually from a new BRAC, which the administration has proposed should be launched in 2019. Morin indicated a significant portion of the savings associated with base closures stems from the reduced need for personnel.“When I worked for the Air Force, our walking around, rough-order estimate was it took 800 to 900 airmen to open a base, before you had any operational folks there,” Morin said.He said that Pentagon officials were not happy with the 2005 round and emphasized DOD’s intention for the next BRAC to focus on efficiency, according to the story.“A future BRAC round would have a much different financial ramification — even though the 2005 BRAC round is now paying off for the department financially, it was a much smaller scale of closure and large-scale realignment than the previous rounds, which yielded much larger financial savings earlier,” Morin stated.