The clouds are definitely coming ... cloud services that is. A recent article in FCW noted that the recent budget language from OMB calls for cloud based architectures and cloud based pilots to reduce the cost of federal data storage, computing, and hosting.
Specifically, OMB published the "Analytical Perspectives" document with the budget request and specifically addresses cloud services on pages 157 and 158.
From the OMB document:
"Of the investments that will involve up-front costs to be recouped in outyear savings, cloud-computing is a prime case in point. The Federal Government will transform its Information Technology Infrastructure by virtualizing data centers, consolidating data centers and operations, and ultimately adopting a cloud-computing business model. Initial pilots conducted in collaboration with Federal agencies will serve as test beds to demonstrate capabilities, including appropriate security and privacy protection at or exceeding current best practices, developing standards, gathering data, and benchmarking costs and performance. The pilots will evolve into migrations of major agency capabilities from agency computing platforms to base agency IT processes and data in the cloud. Expected savings in the outyears, as more agencies reduce their costs of hosting systems in their own data centers, should be many times the original investment in this area."