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2:36 am, October 31, 2014

Senate News

Senate blocks change to military sex assault cases

Military sexual assaults: Impassioned Senate debate but no change in the handling of cases

Friday - 03/07/2014, 04:50pm EST

Pentagon, Senate lawmakers already at odds over 2015 budget cuts

DoD's cost savings proposals for 2015 and beyond include something for every lawmaker to hate. The process of selling the budget on Capitol Hill officially kicked off Wednesday, and the reception was not exceptionally warm.

Thursday - 03/06/2014, 04:12am EST
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Biennial budget process will reduce agency waste, increase congressional efficiency

Twenty states currently use biennial budgeting, with great results, says Congressman Reid Ribble. Rep. Ribble's column is part of Federal News Radio's special report, Now or Never: Ideas to Save the Failing Budget Process.

Tuesday - 03/04/2014, 02:00am EST

Senate bill blocks background-check firms from reviewing own work

The Preventing Conflicts of Interest with Contractors Act would block the Office of Personnel Management from contracting with companies to perform final quality reviews if those same companies are also responsible for conducting initial investigations. OPM Director Katherine Archuleta announced in early February that, going forward, only federal employees would conduct final quality reviews. The new bill writes Archuleta's decision into law. Otherwise it could be reversed by a future OPM director.

Friday - 02/28/2014, 11:32am EST

Key Senate panel to probe federal pay, morale issues

The Senate subcommittee with oversight of the federal workforce will take up the issue of federal-employee compensation and sinking employee morale. Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), the subcommittee chairman, said at the National Treasury Employees Union's annual legislative conference that the hearing would focus, in part, on making sure federal pay stays competitive with the private sector.

Wednesday - 02/26/2014, 06:39pm EST

DoD nominees face scrutiny over Pentagon plan to shrink compensation costs

Just a day after Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel proposed reductions in military end-strength and shrinking compensation costs as part of next year's budget plan, a slate of nominees to lead key offices at the Pentagon faced congressional scrutiny.

Tuesday - 02/25/2014, 03:29pm EST

Congress eyeing legislative fix for security clearances

President Barack Obama signed the OPM IG Act into law this week. The law provides the agency's top watchdog with an additional source of funding to conduct audits and investigations of the security-clearance process.

Thursday - 02/13/2014, 04:14pm EST

Senate clears debt limit measure for Obama

After politically treacherous vote, Senate sends Obama bill clearing way for govt to pay bills

Thursday - 02/13/2014, 03:22am EST

Postal reform bill heading to Senate floor

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee gave its stamp of approval Thursday to a sweeping overhaul of the cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service. In a bipartisan 9-1 vote, the committee approved the 2014 Postal Reform Act and sent the measure to the Senate floor. The bill, which is the brainchild of Sens. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), presents a laundry list of proposals to revamp the financially troubled Postal Service.

Thursday - 02/06/2014, 03:51pm EST

Emergency zombie warnings make Coburn's list of federal cyber failures

Sen. Tom Coburn's (R-Okla.) report on cybersecurity and critical infrastructure in the federal government examined more than 40 inspector general audits and revealed gaping holes in the security of agencies' systems.

Thursday - 02/06/2014, 10:44am EST

Army identifies up to $100 million in fraud in recruiting payments

The Army's audit arm finds huge accountability holes in a years-long program that recruited 130,000 soldiers. The program most likely violated federal law from the get-go, officials say.

Wednesday - 02/05/2014, 03:45am EST
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Senate looks to shore up voting protections for overseas feds

Despite recent reforms, senators see holes in voting protections for military members and feds serving overseas. A new bill would add new requirements for both DoD and local election officials.

Friday - 01/31/2014, 03:50am EST
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New leadership at DHS cracks down on overtime abuse at CBP

Union and CBP officials call for reform of outdated OT pay system, saying the purpose of Administratively Uncontrollable Overtime was misinterpreted.

Wednesday - 01/29/2014, 02:28pm EST
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Latest postal reform bill includes USPS-only health plan

The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee debated an updated version of postal reform legislation Wednesday that would allow the cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service to restructure its health benefits program. Included in the revised postal reform bill from Sens. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) is a proposal that would create a new postal-only health plan within the broader Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP).

Wednesday - 01/29/2014, 10:48am EST

Senators urge about-face on new military retirement cuts

Pentagon leaders expressed disappointment on Tuesday at the retiree cost of living cuts under the Ryan-Murray budget deal and urged Congress to repeal them. But officials also pressed lawmakers to wait for an independent study group's conclusions before making more piecemeal changes to the military compensation system.

Wednesday - 01/29/2014, 04:06am EST
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Senate to take up major overhaul of VA benefits

Sen. Bernie Sanders introduced the measure that includes dozens of provisions that expand benefits and hiring programs and grants advance appropriations to most of the Veterans Affairs' accounts. Senate Veterans Affairs chairman suggested paying for the changes by reducing DoD's wartime budget.

Thursday - 01/23/2014, 04:30am EST
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Senate bill would give GPO new name

New bipartisan legislation is aiming to rebrand the 153-year-old Government Printing Office. But that doesn't mean you'll stop seeing the GPO initials stamped on government documents any time soon. The bill, introduced by Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) last week, would retain GPO's familiar initials, but change the official name of the agency to the Government Publishing Office.

Wednesday - 01/22/2014, 10:35am EST

Obama signs $1.1 trillion government spending bill

President Barack Obama on Friday signed a $1.1 trillion spending bill that funds the federal government through the end of September. Obama put his signature on the 1,582-page measure the day before federal funding was set to run out. The measure calls for less spending than Obama had proposed but more than Republicans sought. However, lawmakers of both parties were determined to avoid a repeat of the political showdown that caused the government shutdown.

Sunday - 01/19/2014, 11:10pm EST

US Sen. Coburn to resign after current session

US Sen. Tom Coburn to resign after current session; Republican diagnosed with cancer last year

Friday - 01/17/2014, 03:50pm EST

Senate easily passes $1.1 trillion spending bill

Senate easily passes $1.1 spending bill; Obama's signature next step

Friday - 01/17/2014, 02:00pm EST
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