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5:35 am, August 28, 2014

Michael O'Connell Reports

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

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

GSA needs more transparency over high-valued leases, report says

A new Government Accountability Office report says greater transparency in the way the General Services Administration handles its high-value leases would lead to better decision making and generate more cost savings.

Friday - 10/25/2013, 03:19pm EDT

Feds get more time to give, as OPM extends CFC deadline

OPM Acting Director Elaine Kaplan extends the Combined Federal Campaign one month, to Jan. 15, 2014, giving feds more time to contribute to their favorite charities.

Friday - 10/25/2013, 01:16pm EDT
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Issa bill would open FEHBP to all Americans, but at what cost?

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) introduced a bill that would open up the federal health program to all Americans, but one federal employee union has come out to oppose it and benefits experts question how much it would cost.

Thursday - 10/24/2013, 03:51pm EDT
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Snowden case threw 'hand grenade' into government secrecy, openness expert says

Despite progress by some agencies in processing FOIA requests, Patrice McDermott of OpenTheGovernment.org says its difficult to measure how open the government really is.

Wednesday - 10/23/2013, 04:47pm EDT
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Army CyberCom meets challenge of recruiting cyber warriors

Command Sgt. Maj. Rodney Harris, the senior enlisted advisor at Army Cyber Command, said the Army is doing a good job at finding the right soldiers with the necessary skill sets to become cyber warriors.

Wednesday - 10/23/2013, 05:59am EDT
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Army faces era of 'dynamic uncertainty' due to CR, sequestration

Army officials say the service is facing uncertainty times after weathering a series of continuing resolutions, sequestration and a partial government shutdown. Meanwhile, a new round of automatic budget cuts may be on the horizon if Congress doesn't pass a new budget come January.

Tuesday - 10/22/2013, 04:33pm EDT

Alexander: Morale of cyber workforce takes hit from shutdown

Gen. Keith Alexander, head of the U.S. Cyber Command and the National Security Agency, said the greatest impact of the ongoing government shutdown on cybersecurity is on the morale of the cyber workforce.

Wednesday - 10/16/2013, 06:34am EDT

Federal courts about to run out of cash, ABA president says

Federal courts are using money from filing fees and long-term appropriations to stay open during the shutdown, but that money is about to run out. Jim Silkenat, American Bar Association president, says Congress needs to pass a budget that addresses the costs of the shutdown and sequestration.

Tuesday - 10/15/2013, 01:28pm EDT
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Contractors do their best to weather shutdown storm

While furloughed federal employees can hang onto the hope Congress will authorize backpay once the shutdown ends, government contractors will likely face the reality of lost wages and revenue.

Monday - 10/14/2013, 03:45pm EDT
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DHS, NASA team up to develop 'Holy Grail' of search and rescue

A partnership between the Homeland Security Department and NASA has led to the creation of a new technology called Finding Individuals for Disaster and Emergency Response (FINDER).

Thursday - 10/10/2013, 03:55pm EDT
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Ruppersberger happy to see progress on Senate cybersecurity bill

Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-Md.), ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee said the longer we wait on cybersecurity legislation, the worse it gets for cyber attacks on the U.S.

Wednesday - 10/09/2013, 06:11pm EDT
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Agencies face 'catch-22' in planning for cyber threats

Your agency's chief information security officer has a problem that might not have a solution. The online ecosystem of apps and mobile devices is creating a perfect storm of incoming threats and financial challenges. Hord Tipton, executive director of the information security non-profit (ISC)², is the former chief information officer of the Interior Department.

Wednesday - 10/09/2013, 02:38pm EDT
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Threat information sharing builds better cyber standards, expert says

Anne Neuberger, director of the National Security Agency's Commercial Solutions Center, explains the pluses and minuses of public-private partnerships for the cybersecurity world.

Thursday - 10/03/2013, 05:05pm EDT
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Ayotte wants answers on A-10 cuts, blocks Air Force nominee

Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) has put confirmation of Deborah Lee James on hold until she gets answers about possible cuts to the A-10 Thunderbolt attack fighter fleet.

Thursday - 09/26/2013, 01:46pm EDT

Rabens fosters next generation of government leaders

Andrew Rabens, 30, helps young people from the Middle East and North Africa to be come the next generation of leaders in the their communities.

Monday - 09/23/2013, 02:42pm EDT
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Ambassador John Berry checks in Down Under

Former OPM director introduces himself to his new Australian neighbors through State Department-produced video. Through Facebook comments, Aussies welcome new ambassador and spouse.

Thursday - 09/19/2013, 03:52pm EDT

Budget constraints top IG concerns, new survey reveals

A new survey of the inspector general community says tighter budgets are making it difficult for IGs to do their jobs effectively. Sequestration hasn't help matters either.

Tuesday - 09/17/2013, 06:04pm EDT
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2013 Causey Award winners announced

Federal News Radio has announced the winners of the fourth annual Causey Awards, recognizing human-resources professionals who have gone above and beyond to help the government operate better. This year's winners are individuals from the National Institutes of Health, the Food and Drug Administration, the departments of Defense and Agriculture and the Social Security Administration.

Monday - 09/16/2013, 05:00am EDT
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