Countdown: shutdown, fed union rights

Friday - 2/25/2011, 12:13pm EST

Today's Federal News Countdown guests are:

- John Kamensky, Senior Fellow, IBM Center for the Business of Government

- Robert Shea, former Associate Director, Office of Management and Budget

John Kamensky stories
#3 Contractors seek answers as possible shutdown nears
From Federal Times:

Legal experts urged government contractors Wednesday to get pending contracts funded and make plans to reassign affected employees in the event of a government shutdown.

The government is operating under a continuing resolution that expires March 4. If Congress does not come up with another 2011 budget bill by then, agencies will not be allowed to pay for anything new, including contracted services.

#2 Union demands bargaining over potential shutdown furloughs
From Federal Times:

The union local representing federal employees at Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma on Wednesday demanded to bargain with managers over any potential furloughs resulting from a government shutdown.

#1 Government shutdown: Facts and figures
From Washington Post:

Despite assurances from the Obama administration and congressional leaders that they don't want a government shutdown, each day closer to March 4 without a final agreement makes the suspension of government services more likely.

Robert Shea's stories
#3 D.C. Council chief will give up luxury SUV
From Washington Post:

Faced with a growing uproar, D.C. Council Chairman Kwame R. Brown announced Tuesday that he will relinquish a taxpayer-funded luxury SUV - one of two the city ordered on his behalf in recent months. But it is unclear whether the gesture will save District taxpayers any money.

#2 Daniels Clarifies Comments, Blasts Democratic Lawmakers
From Real Clear Politics blog:

Indiana Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels today blasted the Democratic lawmakers who fled the Hoosier State this week in order to deny a quorum and delay a vote on an anti-union bill.

"The House Democrats have shown a complete contempt for the democratic process," he said in a briefing this afternoon. "The way that works-as we all learned in grade school-is that if you seek public office, you come, do your duty, you argue, you debate, you amend if you can, you vote ‘no' if you feel you should."

#1 Federal agencies, contractors preparing for government shutdown
From Washington Post:

Federal agencies continued reviewing shutdown plans Wednesday in anticipation of a possible closure of the federal government that could begin as early as next week.

Most of this week's planning probably revolves around determining which employees would need to work, according to Barry Anderson, a budget expert who handled shutdown-related concerns for the Office of Management and Budget during the Clinton-era closures.