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5:42 am, October 24, 2014

Congressional Spotlight

Justin Sink, White House Correspondent, The Hill Newspaper

President Barack Obama is going it alone for the time being. He's sending military resources to drop bombs and shoot missiles at the Islamic State line in Iraq and Syria. He's working largely without the counsel, much less consent, of Congress. Is there a big vacuum in Washington with Congress gone until after the mid-term elections? Or is there a streamlined operation without too much distraction? Justin Sink, White House correspondent for The Hill Newspaper, joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive with details.

Tuesday - 09/30/2014, 11:05am EDT
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David Hawkings, Senior Editor, Roll Call

Most people expected Congress to completely leave Washington when both houses went into recess for the fall election. But two congressional committees will have at least a few members back in town this week. David Hawkings is Senior Editor at Roll Call, and writes the Hawkings Here blog. On In Depth with Francis Rose, he explained what they might be up to.

Monday - 09/29/2014, 04:26pm EDT
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DoD to propose stricter lending protections for military members

The Defense Department is set to propose tighter rules that it says would close several loopholes in current regulations that are designed to protect service members from predatory lenders. This story is part of Jared Serbu's Inside the DoD Reporter's Notebook.

Monday - 09/29/2014, 04:17am EDT

Dana Leigh Marks, National Association of Immigration Judges

Congress left town ignoring the Obama administration's request for more funding to deal with illegal immigration. Dana Leigh Marks is president of the National Association of Immigration Judges and an immigration judge in San Francisco. When we spoke with her at the peak of the surge across the Southern border in July, she described her work as handling death-penalty cases with traffic court resources. She gave an update on the situation on the Federal Drive with guest host Emily Kopp.

Friday - 09/26/2014, 12:17pm EDT
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Julia Ziegler, Web Manager, Federal News Radio

Congress is out of here, and members won't be back until after the November elections. So what did Congress accomplish? Julia Ziegler, Federal News Radio's web manager, shared your thoughts on the issue on the Federal Drive with guest host Emily Kopp.

Friday - 09/26/2014, 09:25am EDT
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Lexy Kessler, Government Contracting Practice Partner, Aronson

Budget certainty is in place now, with the continuing resolution that funds the government through Dec. 11. But what happens after that? Only Congress can make that more clear, and it isn't doing anything until November. Lexy Kessler is partner-in-charge of the government contracting practice at Aronson LLC. On In Depth with Francis Rose, she said history can be a contractor's planning guide for the CR.

Thursday - 09/25/2014, 04:11pm EDT
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Senate leaves Social Security's Colvin, others, waiting for confirmation

The Senate left Washington without confirming several of President Barack Obama's nominees for the executive branch, including Carolyn Colvin, his choice to lead the Social Security Administration.

Monday - 09/22/2014, 12:24pm EDT

Lawmakers debate future of DHS headquarters project

House Homeland Security Committee lawmakers and GAO highlighted funding shortfalls and a need to update plans. Meanwhile, Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs majority issued a report detailing why its research shows Congress should make the DHS headquarters consolidation project a priority.

Monday - 09/22/2014, 05:03am EDT

Lawmakers want assurances from GSA on AbilityOne compliance

The Obama administration's strategic sourcing program has been beset by protests from unhappy vendors. This post is part of Jason Miller's Inside the Reporter's Notebook feature.

Monday - 09/22/2014, 04:33am EDT

Our half-(p)assed Congress

It's safe to come out. Congress has wrapped up its two weeks of work and fled D.C. again. At least they passed a continuing resolution to fund the government through Dec. 11 before they left, says Senior Correspondent Mike Causey.

Monday - 09/22/2014, 02:00am EDT

Senate: China hacked military contractor networks

Senate investigation says China hacked into military contractor networks at least 9 times

Thursday - 09/18/2014, 05:50pm EDT

DHS management chief nominee's approach is data centric

Russell Deyo sailed through his nomination hearing before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Wednesday. He said the Homeland Security Department needs to consolidate financial management systems so it can use the data to make strategic decisions. The committee also heard from nominees for Immigration and Customs Enforcement and USPS Board of Governors.

Thursday - 09/18/2014, 04:41am EDT
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Continuing resolution heads to President Obama for signature

The continuing resolution keeps government agencies open and funded until Dec. 11. At this point, Congress has not tried to use the legislation to block a 1 percent pay raise for federal employees in 2015.

Wednesday - 09/17/2014, 10:47pm EDT

Congress approves inflation increase for veterans

Congress approves inflation increase for veterans receiving disability, other benefits

Wednesday - 09/17/2014, 02:10pm EDT

Jessica Klement, Legislative Director, NARFE

The House of Representatives might pass a continuing resolution today. The Senate could then vote on a CR as early as tomorrow. That means in just a few days your agency could have some budget certainty. At least until the end of December. Jessica Klement is Legislative Director of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association. On In Depth with Francis Rose, she shared what she sees from the CR process.

Tuesday - 09/16/2014, 04:17pm EDT
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Is it all or nothing on General Schedule reform?

The number of job series should be reduced by at least half, and more likely by three-quarters, says former DHS CHCO Jeff Neal. It also makes for an arduous and overly complex hiring process for applicants from outside government.

Monday - 09/15/2014, 10:20am EDT

Anne Rung confirmed as OFPP administrator

The Senate approved Anne Rung's nomination by voice vote. Procurement experts say improving the acquisition workforce and addressing concerns with strategic sourcing are among her top priorities.

Thursday - 09/11/2014, 05:00pm EDT

GOP bill would avert fed shutdown till Dec. 11

House GOP bill would avert federal shutdown till December, provide $88 million to combat Ebola

Thursday - 09/11/2014, 01:06am EDT

House postpones vote on short-term spending bill

House Republican leaders are postponing a vote on a short-term spending bill as they weigh President Barack Obama's request for the authority to train and equip Syrian rebels battling Islamic State militants.

Wednesday - 09/10/2014, 04:48pm EDT

IGs accuse agencies of stonewalling

Agencies are creating roadblocks for auditors, three inspectors general told Congress. The IGs cited specific examples at the Peace Corps, Environmental Protection Agency, Chemical Safety Board and the Justice Department.

Wednesday - 09/10/2014, 12:36pm EDT
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