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2:45 am, August 20, 2014

Michael O'Connell Reports

Michael O'Connell is a web editor and general assignment reporter for Federal News Radio.

SEA decries DoD plan to reduce SES bonuses

The Senior Executives Association sent a letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Dec. 5 criticizing recently released guidance that reduced pay pool amounts for the Fiscal Year 2013 performance awards for members of the Senior Executives Service.

Tuesday - 12/10/2013, 01:53pm EST

Park Service tackles employee training and development

Like many agencies, National Park Service is facing many challenges during tight budgetary times. Chief among NPS' challenges is how to train its next generation of leaders.

Monday - 12/09/2013, 03:52pm EST
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White House releases second open government action plan

The Obama administration's second Open Government National Action Plan introduces 23 new or expanded commitments to open government, including measures to strengthen whistleblower protections and improve the declassification process.

Friday - 12/06/2013, 03:04pm EST

New bill aims to cancel sequestration for DoD at cost to feds' pay and benefits

Reps. Jim Bridenstine (R-Okla.) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) introduced a bill Tuesday to cancel sequestration for the Defense Department for two years. The bill would offset this change by using a chained CPI to calculate COLAs for federal retirement programs along with other entitlement reforms.

Tuesday - 12/03/2013, 04:32pm EST

Carter steps down, Fox appointed new acting deputy DoD secretary

As Ashton Carter leaves the Pentagon as its deputy defense secretary, the long-time public servant criticizes the political divisiveness in Washington as being detrimental to the readiness of U.S. forces.

Tuesday - 12/03/2013, 12:31pm EST

GAO: Census Bureau making progress on field tests for 2020 decennial

The Government Accountability Office studied how well the Census Bureau is preparing for the 2020 decennial. When it comes to field testing, the bureau is making progress on following a list of key practices GAO identified.

Wednesday - 11/27/2013, 12:58pm EST
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Satisfied workers key to one small agency's success

With a staff of about 50 workers, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency helps American businesses find opportunities overseas. The agency's director says her staff "has buy-in focus on the same mission," which explains their overall sense of satisfaction.

Tuesday - 11/26/2013, 01:28pm EST
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Bill would strengthen whistleblower protections for military personnel

Four senators have introduced a bill to extend to members of the military the same whistleblower protections enjoyed by civilian agency employees. The bipartisan bill already has gained the support of one advocacy group -- the Government Accountability Project.

Monday - 11/25/2013, 01:41pm EST
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Mobile, telework create potential savings, increase productivity at agencies

Emerging technologies like cloud, wireless access and virtualization are making telework an easy -- and economic -- solution for some agencies.

Friday - 11/22/2013, 03:07pm EST
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Smart design can make federal offices more productive places to work

Even stodgy old federal buildings can benefit from the smart design the latest technological advances offer today's building designers.

Thursday - 11/21/2013, 02:25pm EST
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Commerce reaps savings through collaborative strategic-sourcing effort

The chief information and chief technology offices at the Commerce Department have generated more than $200 million in savings by taking a collaborative approach to purchasing IT and cybersecurity products.

Wednesday - 11/20/2013, 01:39pm EST
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Emerging technologies alter the way agencies, industry do business

The federal market is in flux. New companies are popping up, and established contractors, big and small, are altering the way they do business to take advantage of emerging technologies and the way that technology is delivered. As part of Federal News Radio's special report, A New Era in Technology, we examine the sea change that will force federal agencies and contractors to think differently as they learn how to master these new technologies together.

Tuesday - 11/19/2013, 01:00pm 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

VA, DoD climb the stairs to interoperability together

Dr. Theresa Cullen, chief medical informatics officer at the Veterans Health Administration, leads the program that allows the departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs to share data to improve the quality of health care they provide.

Thursday - 11/14/2013, 05:08pm EST
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More oversight needed to achieve billions of dollars in IT savings

The Government Accountability Office looked at two initiatives that are supposed to help get information technology spending under control. GAO found that both initiatives are coming up short.

Tuesday - 11/12/2013, 04:50pm EST
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Young leaders find new avenues to help advance their careers

Young Government Leaders helps young professionals find classes and mentors that can help them to learn new skills and advance in their careers.

Friday - 11/08/2013, 01:50pm EST
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House panel targets DoD acquisition reform, but will that be enough?

The House Armed Services Committee created a panel to figure out a way to reform the defense acquisition processes. Experts say reform may be difficult but it's also necessary given tight budgets and sequestration.

Wednesday - 11/06/2013, 02:29pm EST
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Senate bill calls for random background checks for clearance holders

Five senators introduce bipartisan bill aimed at enhancing how the Office of Personnel Management handles the clearances of federal employees and contractors to access classified information. If enacted, the legislation would require OPM conduct random, automated reviews twice every five years of public records and databases for information about individuals with security clearances.

Wednesday - 10/30/2013, 04:55pm EDT

Federal building security at risk due to lax training, oversight

A new report from the Government Accountability Office fueled a House subcommittee hearing that revealed security concerns regarding the training and certification of contract guards employed by the Federal Protective Service.

Wednesday - 10/30/2013, 02:33pm EDT
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House works on bills impacting federal agencies, workforce

With the partial government shutdown behind them, members of Congress are working on several bills that impact the federal workforce, including a resolution that supports ending the federal pay freeze and a bill that tackles the claims backlog at Veterans Affairs.

Tuesday - 10/29/2013, 02:41pm EDT
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