GSA's Managed Services Office begins smart-card enrollment

The General Services Administration today began registering employees so they can receive new identity cards under Homeland Security Presidential Directive-12, a GSA spokesman said.

Under HSPD-12, agencies must have the ability to issue smart cards by Oct. 27.

GSA's Managed Services Office will be issuing the new ID cards to about 28 agencies over the next two years under a contract it signed in late August with BearingPoint Inc. of McLean, Va.

The contract specifics that the agency will begin enrolling employees in Washington, D.C., and three other locations throughout the country ' New York City, Atlanta and Seattle ' by Oct. 20. That date slipped when GSA was forced to halt work on the contract for a brief period in early September after three losing bidders protested the BearingPoint award.

GSA administrator Lurita Doan, speaking to reporters Tuesday after a speech in Washington, said she will receive her new ID card Wednesday.

She also said that Oct. 27 should be seen as a beginning rather than a deadline, as work on HSPD-12 will continue well after this Friday.

'Let's face it, we're not going to say, 'OK, its done,' once Friday comes around,' Doan said. 'No, it just keeps going on and on. This is just the target that we're going to be moving constantly toward at every government agency from now on. This is a homeland security presidential directive, we're going to do it, and this doesn't go away after Oct. 27.'

Meanwhile, the Social Security Administration, one of several agencies attempting to meet the deadline alone, said it issued a new card to SSA commissioner Jo Anne Barnhart last week.

It will issue more cards over the next several weeks, an SSA spokesman said, and will complete its issuance by Sept. 30, 2008.

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