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10:29 am, November 26, 2014

Congressional Spotlight

House panel probes DoD's acquisition workforce

The size of DoD's civilian acquisition workforce has grown by some 20,000 employees over the past five years and now numbers about 135,000 personnel members, according to Stephanie Barna, acting assistant secretary of Defense for Readiness and Force Management. That's thanks to an effort by DoD begun in 2009 to recapitalize its acquisition workforce. But the department's focus on the acquisition workforce has been strained by a slew of competing priorities and congressionally-mandated belt-tightening, Barna said.

Thursday - 07/10/2014, 06:14pm EDT

Senate confirms Julian Castro as HUD secretary

The Senate easily confirmed San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro on Wednesday to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

Wednesday - 07/09/2014, 05:30pm EDT

Rep. Donald Payne, Jr. (D-NJ)

For the Department of Homeland Security, making its 22 components' radio systems interoperable with one another has been an objective since the department was created in 2003. But today, DHS still can't account for all of its communications assets -- let alone get them to talk to each other. Last night, the House passed legislation designed to get things moving. Rep. Donald Payne (D-NJ) is the ranking member of the House Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness and the prime sponsor of the DHS Interoperable Communications Act. He explained the details of the bill on In Depth with Francis Rose.

Wednesday - 07/09/2014, 05:06pm EDT
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House passes bills tackling DHS communications during disasters

Legislation passed by the House creates a social media working group for the Department of Homeland Security, and adds in requirements and accountability processes to improve interoperability across the agency.

Wednesday - 07/09/2014, 12:53pm EDT

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.)

The Senate's to-do list this week includes the next steps on information technology contracting reform and enhancing the role of the Chief Information Officer at federal agencies. But the Senate is playing catch-up: the House has already passed its version of the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act. Congressman Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) is a cosponsor of FITARA. He explained on In Depth with Francis Rose what he likes about the Senate version and what he wants to change.

Tuesday - 07/08/2014, 04:46pm EDT
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Justin Sink, White House Correspondent, The Hill Newspaper

Congress returns this week to confront a number of issues that need immediate action. President Obama is asking for an additional $2 billion to help deal with the flood of unaccompanied minors. And time is ticking away for lawmakers to replenish the Highway Trust Fund, which is set to run out of money at the end of August. The Hill's White House Correspondent, Justin Sink, joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to give a round up on what's going on this week.

Tuesday - 07/08/2014, 10:54am EDT
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Race to finish fiscal 2015 agency budgets hits snag

The appropriations process was supposed to be easier this year compared to last, because lawmakers had signed off on a bipartisan deal that set top-line spending levels for the next two years. But action in both the House and the Senate appears to have largely stalled.

Monday - 07/07/2014, 05:56pm EDT

A look ahead

Co-hosts Bob Leins and Tammy Flanagan talk about the state of the federal workforce and legislation under consideration in Congress that could affect federal employment.
July 7, 2014

Monday - 07/07/2014, 05:05pm EDT
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Philip Joyce, Professor of Public Policy, University of Maryland

Congress needs to pass twelve annual spending bills -- which set agency funding levels -- before the end of the fiscal year on September 30th. The House passed five of those bills so far. The Senate hasn't passed any. The appropriations process was supposed to be easier this year compared to last year. That's because lawmakers have already agreed on a bipartisan budget deal that sets topline spending figures for the next two years. Philip Joyce is a professor of public policy at the University of Maryland. In an interview with Web Writer Jack Moore, he said agencies should still plan for a continuing resolution.

Monday - 07/07/2014, 04:41pm EDT
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David Hawkings, Senior Editor, Roll Call

The House is beating the Senate five to nothing in the race to pass next year's appropriations bills. The topline spending amounts for federal agencies are already set, but even so Congress isn't exactly sprinting to finalize the budgets. But the clock is still ticking and September 30th is only about three months away. David Hawkings is Senior Editor of Roll Call. He explained where Congress stands in the appropriations process on In Depth with Francis Rose.

Monday - 07/07/2014, 04:15pm EDT
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Cristina Marcos, Staff Writer, The Hill Newspaper

The pictures are both heartbreaking and maddening. Thousands of minors pouring over the Mexican border into the United States, and causing havoc for guards and other federal employees. A new House bill would let the President appoint dozens of new immigration judges to help keep up with the flow of humanity. Cristina Marcos, a staff writer for The Hill Newspaper, joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to discuss the bill's prospects and potential benefits.

Tuesday - 07/01/2014, 10:49am EDT
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David Hawkings, Senior Editor, Roll Call

Congress is on its Independence Day holiday, and yet it still has a lot of work left on the table for when it comes back. David Hawkings, senior editor at Roll Call, writes the Hawkings Here blog. He tells In Depth with Francis Rose why there still hasn't been a lot of movement on appropriations bills.

Monday - 06/30/2014, 04:33pm EDT
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Sen. Tester wants to clean up one messy part of the federal hiring process

The Competitive Service Act of 2014 would let agencies share information about potential job candidates when they are trying to fill similar needs.

Friday - 06/27/2014, 03:20pm EDT

Army Corps of Engineers exploring new ways to finance missions

Army Corps of Engineers faces billions of dollars in backlogged projects. With little hope of additional funding from Congress, officials are looking for alternative ways to finance the public infrastructure they're charged with maintaining.

Friday - 06/27/2014, 04:27am EDT
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Senate panel OKs $47B DHS budget

The bill boosts the administration's request for the Customs Service and Border Patrol for initial handling of unaccompanied immigrant children arriving on the southern border by $77 million.

Thursday - 06/26/2014, 03:30pm EDT

Lawmakers optimistic about IT reform, cyber improvements

The nomination of Shaun Donovan to be director of the Office of Management and Budget as well as a variety of bills dealing with federal IT reform and cybersecurity updates crowded the docket of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee business meeting Wednesday.

Thursday - 06/26/2014, 09:37am EDT

Jason Miller, Executive Editor, Federal News Radio

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan has cleared his first hurdle on the way to becoming director of the Office of Management and Budget. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee gave him the nod, even though some members weren't thrilled with his answers to their questions. Federal News Radio's Executive Editor Jason Miller joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive to recap the drama, and share details on everything else the busy committee did yesterday that could impact federal agencies. Read Jason's related article.

Thursday - 06/26/2014, 09:36am EDT
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House panel votes to preserve USPS Saturday mail delivery

The House Appropriations Committee voted to restore a longstanding congressional mandate requiring the Postal Service to deliver mail on Saturdays.

Wednesday - 06/25/2014, 07:11pm EDT

House, Senate begins compromise talks on vets bill

House, Senate negotiators seek compromise on vets health care bill

Wednesday - 06/25/2014, 03:40pm EDT

Archivist: IRS didn't follow law with lost emails

Top US archivist: IRS didn't follow law, report loss of agency executive's emails in 2011

Wednesday - 06/25/2014, 10:54am EDT
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