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Shows & Panels
Monday - Friday, 6-9 a.m.
Hosts Tom Temin and Emily Kopp bring you the latest news affecting the federal community each weekday morning, featuring interviews with top government executives and contractors. Listen live from 6 to 9 a.m. or download archived interviews on our daily show blogs.
Tuesday morning federal headlines - July 3, 2012
Tuesday - 7/3/2012, 8:43am EDT
The Morning Federal Newscast is a daily compilation of the stories you hear Federal Drive hosts Tom Temin and Emily Kopp discuss throughout the show each day. The Newscast is designed to give FederalNewsRadio.com users more information about the stories you hear on the air. Today's news includes a senator objecting to the proliferation of federal websites and the Park Service attempting to cut tourist air traffic over the Grand Canyon.
The Morning Federal Newscast is a daily compilation of the stories you hear Federal Drive hosts Tom Temin and Emily Kopp discuss throughout the show each day. The Newscast is designed to give FederalNewsRadio.com users more information about the stories you hear on the air.
- The federal
government is on its second day of a modified work schedule. Hundreds of
thousands of people in greater Washington are still without electricity. Utilities
say it will be Friday night before everyone is turned back on. Non emergency
workers are asked to notify supervisors if they plan to use unscheduled leave or
unscheduled telework. Emergency employees must report on time. The Defense
Information Systems Agency at Fort Meade in Maryland is open today. The same
policies apply. All DISA employees must let their supervisors know if they plan to
telework. (Federal News Radio)
- The Government Accountability
Office has turned back a protest over a multibillion dollar TRICARE contract.
TriWest HealthCare Alliance lost a bid in March to United Health Military and
Veterans Services. TriWest protested, and said it would consider its options now
that GAO has rejected its claim. The six-year contract was worth more than $20
billion and covered service members and families in the western region. TriWest
still has the option to appeal to the to the court of federal claims. The Defense
Department awarded three major contracts starting in 2009 for TRICARE. Losing
bidders protested in all three cases. (Federal News Radio)
- The new Stock Act meant to prevent insider-trading among lawmakers will hurt
science. That's the claim that federal researchers are making in a letter to
lawmakers. The Assembly of Scientists represents National Institutes of Health
researchers. It asked senators to repeal a section of the law that requires the
government to post top career feds' financial information online. It said the
provision left employees open to cyber crimes and fraud. It said it discouraged
scientists at universities from joining national labs. This letter followed a
white paper from The Senior Executives Association that claimed the law unfairly
snared government executives in a net meant for lawmakers and political
appointees. (Federal News Radio)
- Two powerful lawmakers think the Justice Department is intimidating
whistleblowers. They want it to stop. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Rep.
Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) asked the Justice inspector general to investigate. They
wanted to know whether the department has effective whistleblower protections in
place. Issa and Grassley referred to comments made earlier this year by Scott
Thomasson, a public affairs official at Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
They said Thomasson made negative comments about employees he supervises. They
spoke publicly about the gun-walking operation known as Fast and Furious.
(Federal News Radio)
- Federal employees who use mass-transit to get to work will have to dig a
little deeper. The Transportation Bill Congress passed last week does not extend
a tax deduction for users of public transportation. The deduction was worth $230 a
month until the end of last year. It then dropped to $125 a month. The new bill,
which the president is expected to sign this week, keeps the lower subsidy level.
But a spokesman for the House Ways and Means Committee said it was possible
Congress would reconsider raising it. One union estimated tens of thousands of
federal workers are affected by the lower subsidy. (Federal News Radio)
- Agencies are gearing up for another round of SAVE Awards. It will be the
fourth year and the White House wants to make sure it doesn't hear the same penny-
pinching ideas over and over. It is encouraging agencies to use a three-star
rating system to evaluate employees' plans to save the government money. The
Office of Management and Budget told agency chief financial officers that only
compelling, practical and specific ideas should merit that top rating. OMB said it
would announce deadlines for submissions later this month. Then the public will
choose a winning idea from among the finalists. (Federal News Radio)
- The White House's campaign to cut government waste could move a bit faster, according to Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) He pointed to the proliferation of government websites. A year ago, President Barack Obama told agencies to slash the more-than-1,700 sites by half. But they have shut down just 300 sites, falling well short of that goal. In response, the White House told Government Executive that 600 more websites are on the chopping block. It also said the campaign has cut billions of dollars in contracting costs, data consolidation, fraud prevention and real-estate sales. Coburn asked the Congressional Research Service for an update on the other aspects of the waste-cutting initiative, but researchers found much of the data is only available to executive branch employees. (Sen. Tom Coburn)