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6:18 pm, May 22, 2015

Veterans Affairs News

VA should be smaller, more specialized to treat veterans, Md. congressman says

In the days leading up to Memorial Day, a Maryland congressman says a smaller, more specialized Department of Veterans Affairs would better serve American service members.

Friday - 05/22/2015, 12:08pm EDT

Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.)

Customer service at the Veterans Affairs Department has been a mixed bag lately. After the long weekend and the barbeque paraphernalia are cleaned up, area vets will have a chance to sit down with a caseworker and sort their affairs. Rep. John Delaney (D-Md.) will have those caseworkers on hand for a Constituent Services Workshop in Germantown. Vets can get help with all sorts of things. Rep. Delaney joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive with more workshop details.

Friday - 05/22/2015, 08:53am EDT
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This Memorial Day, remembering those who died

Commentary: former DHS human capital exec Jeff Neal.

Friday - 05/22/2015, 04:51am EDT

VA turns up its 'intensity' to solve long-standing cyber challenges

Stephen Warren, the Veterans Affairs Department's chief information officer, said he's brought in extra vendors to deal with a backlog of cyber challenges. VA's inspector general found more than 9,000 outstanding system security risks in its annual Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) report.

Friday - 05/22/2015, 03:42am EDT
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House to VA employees: Your mess-ups will live forever

Under the Ensuring VA Accountability Act, reprimands and admonishments that VA employees receive for misconduct would remain part of their permanent record for as long as they work for the department.

Thursday - 05/21/2015, 02:17pm EDT

John Mahoney, Federal Employment Attorney

The VA wastes at least $5 billion a year by skirting federal law and paying excessive prices for goods and services. That's according to Jan Frye, VA's deputy assistant secretary for acquisition and logistics. He recently told a congressional hearing that illegal purchase-card abuse seems to be the biggest problem. Members of the Veterans Affairs committee echo the notion that VA employees are acting illegally. What if that's you they're making those allegations about? Federal employment attorney John Mahoney joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive to offer some advice.

Thursday - 05/21/2015, 08:22am EDT
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Official: VA improperly spends $5 billion a year on health

Senior official says VA wastes billions on improper purchases of drugs, medical supplies

Friday - 05/15/2015, 01:10am EDT

Cheri Cannon, Partner, Tully Rinckey PLLC

You never know what can come up in a psychiatric session. At the Veterans Affairs medical center in Louisville, two patients complained that Dr. Patricia Kinne revealed her sexual orientation. They requested another doctor, and she received a warning from center management. But management's case didn't prevail at the Office of Special Counsel. Federal employment attorney Cheri Cannon of the law firm Tully Rinckey joined the Federal Drive with Tom Temin with more on the lessons learned in this case.

Thursday - 05/14/2015, 09:11am EDT
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Are bungled VA claims systemic? Senators want agency review

Senators want independent review of VA to see if mismanagement of veterans' claims is systemic

Thursday - 05/07/2015, 05:36pm EDT

Janet Kopenhaver, Washington Representative, FEW

A stack of bills that affects federal employees is under consideration in Congress. One would create new protections for military whistleblowers, and another would expedite the firing process at the Department of Veterans Affairs even more. Janet Kopenhaver is Washington representative of Federally Employed Women. On In Depth with Francis Rose, she analyzed how the bills could affect federal employees in the future.

Thursday - 05/07/2015, 04:17pm EDT
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VA nominee vows transformation of veterans heath care

Dr. David Shulkin led a turnaround of New York's Beth Israel Hospital as part of a long career in private sector hospital administration. He said running the Department of Veterans Affairs' health system would be a far greater challenge, but assured senators that his skills are transferrable to the public sector.

Wednesday - 05/06/2015, 04:27am EDT
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Rep. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.), House Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies

The House passed the Military Construction and Veterans Affairs appropriations bill. But the vote was a lot closer than it usually is. The chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies oversees the release of that bill every year. Rep. Charlie Dent (R-Pa.) is chairman of the subcommittee right now. On In Depth with Francis Rose, he said the spending level in the bill isn't a cut for the VA.

Tuesday - 05/05/2015, 04:14pm EDT
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House approves bill banning VA SES bonuses

An amendment to the Veterans Affairs appropriations bill would prohibit the agency from awarding performance bonuses to senior executives.

Monday - 05/04/2015, 10:22am EDT

Vince Kane, Veterans Affairs Department

Veterans Affairs wants to help put an end to veteran homelessness. The department is repurposing its West Los Angeles campus to serve particularly vulnerable veterans, such as women or severely disabled vets, who are also homeless. The campus redesign will help VA implement the White House policy that no veteran should live on the streets. Vince Kane, the director of the VA's National Homeless Center, joined Tom Temin on the Federal Drive with more on the plan.

Friday - 05/01/2015, 09:41am EDT
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Bills you should know about: Whistleblowers, bad apples and trolls

Congress has introduced lots of bills recently affecting federal agencies and employees. We summarize them for you here.

Thursday - 04/30/2015, 11:19am EDT

Mark Goldstein, Physical Infrastructure Issues Director, GAO

A multi-billion dollar construction portfolio at the Department of Veterans Affairs is suffering from schedule delays and cost overruns. Those issues are now a $1 billion headache for the VA. Mark Goldstein is director of Physical Infrastructure Issues at the Government Accountability Office. On In Depth with Francis Rose and guest co-host Karen Evans, he explained why he told the Senate Veterans' Affairs committee some of those problems are getting worse.

Monday - 04/27/2015, 04:13pm EDT
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VA pledges broad review of claims processing

VA pledges top-down review of claims processing amid mismanagement in Philadelphia

Sunday - 04/26/2015, 12:30pm EDT

VA chief calls House budget proposal 'inadequate'

A House subcommittee's plan to cut the budget for the Department of Veterans Affairs by more than $1.4 billion next year will "cause veterans to suffer," VA Secretary Robert McDonald said Tuesday.

Tuesday - 04/21/2015, 09:00pm EDT

House lawmakers alarmed by VA's overseas network access

On the heels of another Veterans Affairs Department inspector general report showing departmental cybersecurity practices falling short, House Veterans Affairs Committee lawmakers are pressing for more answers about just how secure the data of millions of veterans are in the agency's network.

Monday - 04/20/2015, 04:04am EDT

SEA calls on House lawmakers to further improve VA Accountability bill

Carol Bonosaro, president of the Senior Executives Association, explained her organization's concerns, saying Congress doesn't need to micromanage SES performance reviews at VA.

Thursday - 04/16/2015, 04:35pm EDT
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