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12:45 am, August 30, 2014

Congressional Spotlight

AFGE, NTEU try to stave off changes to retirement benefits

The two employee unions say lawmakers shouldn't make up for sequestration cuts by forcing federal employees to contribute more to their retirement. House and Senate legislators are working on a small-scale budget deal that reportedly includes a provision to alter federal retirement benefits.

Friday - 12/06/2013, 04:07am EST

The problem and solution are the same thing: You!

What do so many Washington-based politicians have in common with a firefighter with an arson problem? Both spend a lot of time solving problems they created, Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says.

Thursday - 12/05/2013, 02:00am EST

Critics say federal design-build construction contracts stifling competition

Representatives of the construction and building design industries told lawmakers Tuesday that agencies' practices in issuing design-build construction contracts are dissuading qualified contractors from even offering bids.

Wednesday - 12/04/2013, 04:15am EST
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Back to the Future: Bring back the Raines Rules for IT procurement?

Two key contributors to the 1996 Clinger-Cohen Act say there is nothing wrong with the current IT management laws. Agencies and Congress just need to improve how they implement and enforce the IT management directives set out by the law. The Senate is expected to pass the Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act next week.

Wednesday - 12/04/2013, 03:46am EST
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Dodd-Frank update and trans fat goes away

On this week's Capital Impact show, Bloomberg Government analysts give us an update on Dodd-Frank, and how businesses would be impacted if trans fat is eliminated from the nation's food supply.
December 5, 2013

Tuesday - 12/03/2013, 07:16pm EST
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Mica says agencies 'thwarting' proposed FTC relocation

Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.), chairman of the House Oversight's Subcommittee on Government Operations, said the Federal Trade Commission and the General Services Administration are "thwarting" his proposal to force the FTC to relocate out of its historic headquarters building and into leased space in Southwest Washington, D.C.

Tuesday - 12/03/2013, 05:10pm EST

Will budget committee target feds' retirement contributions?

Even as mystery surrounds the work of the House-Senate budget committee negotiating over fiscal 2014 funding levels and possible alternatives to devastating across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration, there's consensus emerging about some of the potential bargaining chips the committee is likely to use. That includes requiring federal workers to contribute more of their salaries toward their pensions.

Monday - 12/02/2013, 06:00am EST

Should you worry or is US military at the ready?

Is the military still ready for war _ or should you be worried?

Saturday - 11/30/2013, 09:04am EST

Rep. Connolly says momentum is building for IT procurement reforms

Sen. Jean Shaheen (D-N.H.) introduced an amendment to the upper chamber's version of the Defense Authorization Act that closely mirrors the House's Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act. The House passed its version in June. The White House still hasn't officially weighed in on FITARA.

Wednesday - 11/27/2013, 04:11am EST
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Prospects brighten for small-scale budget deal

Prospects for a small-scale budget deal may be brightening though hurdles remain

Tuesday - 11/26/2013, 01:10am EST

Bill calls for 'socially responsible' TSP fund

A new bill would allow federal employees to contribute toward their retirement by investing only in companies deemed socially responsible. The "Federal Employees Responsible Investment Act," introduced this week by Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), would require the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board to add a "Corporate Responsibility Index" to the existing five investment options available to federal employees.

Friday - 11/22/2013, 05:14pm EST

Issa subpoenas OPM documents on background checks

Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has issued a subpoena for records from the Office of Personnel Management, seeking more details on the agency's process for conducting background investigations. OPM's Federal Investigative Services division, which conducts 90 percent of the federal government's background investigations, has come under intense scrutiny since it was revealed earlier this year that the same contractor -- United States Investigation Services (USIS) -- performed background checks of both National Security agency leaker Edward Snowden and Navy Yard gunman Aaron Alexis.

Friday - 11/22/2013, 02:20pm EST

Bill would ensure blue-collar feds get 1 percent pay raise in January

A new bill introduced this week by Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pa.) would ensure blue-collar federal employees receive the same scheduled pay increase in January as General Schedule employees. White-collar GS employees are due to get a 1 percent pay raise in January, under a plan announced in August by President Barack Obama, who has authority to set GS pay levels. However, pay raises for wage-grade or hourly employees require separate legislation. With no action by Congress, pay for these employees would remain flat.

Friday - 11/22/2013, 11:11am EST

How Congress lost its tech groove at the corner of CitiBank and a fruit basket

Congress, as an institution, doesn't appear to have the technological skills and knowledge to ask the right questions when it comes to increasingly complex agency IT programs. The congressionally-chartered Office of Technology Assessment was defunded in the mid-1990s and former staffers say its absence is sorely felt today. Many people say the time is right for a reboot of the OTA. This article is part of the Federal News Radio special report, A New Era in Technology.

Thursday - 11/21/2013, 07:00am EST

3 takeways from HealthCare.gov IT hearing; First task order for continuous monitoring is out

In this week's edition of Inside the Reporter's Notebook, Executive Editor Jason Miller shares news and buzz in the acquisition and IT communities that you may have missed.

Friday - 11/15/2013, 05:20pm EST

Postal Service posts $5B loss; CFO says USPS in 'precarious position'

Postal officials called on Congress to lift a 2006 congressional requirement that it make annual $5.6 billion payments to cover expected health care costs for future retirees.

Friday - 11/15/2013, 04:08pm EST

CBO: Congress could wring $300B in deficit savings from federal pay, pension changes

A new Congressional Budget Office analysis of proposed deficit-reduction efforts contained half a dozen proposals affecting federal employees, including reducing annual pay raises, requiring federal employees to contribute more toward their pensions and reducing the size of the federal workforce through attrition. All told, such proposals would reduce federal outlays or increase revenues by $308 billion, according to CBO estimates.

Friday - 11/15/2013, 12:30pm EST

Federal IT officials shirk responsibility for HealthCare.gov problems

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee pressed federal Chief Information Officer Steve VanRoekel, federal Chief Technology Officer Todd Park, Department of Health and Human Services CIO Frank Baitman and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services deputy CIO Henry Chao to acknowledge the oversight failings, and for someone to declare they were in charge of the program.

Thursday - 11/14/2013, 03:42am EST
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Top priority for DHS pick: Vacancies not terrorism

Homeland Security nominee: Priorities are filling job vacancies, morale over counterterrorism

Wednesday - 11/13/2013, 05:21pm EST
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Lawmakers raise cybersecurity concerns about HealthCare.gov

The troubled HealthCare.gov website has been the subject of at least one attempted but unsuccessful cyber attack, according to one of the of the Homeland Security Department's top cyber officials. Lawmakers at a House Homeland Security Committee hearing said the consolidation of personal information and the glitch-prone website are cause for concern.

Wednesday - 11/13/2013, 04:11pm EST
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