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Issa seeks closer relationship between IGs, Congress

Too often Congress is left "in the dark" when it comes to inspector general investigations of agency misconduct, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chair of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee wrote in a letter to 73 inspectors general. Issa said he wanted to "establish an understanding between Congress and the IG community" for more rapid reporting of agency misdeeds uncovered by their offices. In his letter, Issa asked the inspectors for more information about their reporting practices to Congress and whether any serious problems were ever not shared with lawmakers.

Tags: oversight , House , House Oversight and Government Reform Committee , Darrell Issa , GSA , Shakeup at GSA ,

Monday - 08/06/2012, 09:06pm EDT

Retirement claims tick up, but OPM continues cutting backlog

The Office of Personnel Management received more claims than expected last month, but for the third month in a row processed more claims than it expected to. OPM has also made progress cutting the longstanding backlog of retirement claims. At 44,679 claims, there are now fewer retirement claims stuck in the backlog than there were in December 2011, when OPM began tracking them as part of a new push to eliminate the logjam.

Tags: retirement , OPM , backlog , retirement backlog

Monday - 08/06/2012, 03:08pm EDT

TSP returns inch up in July

Returns for most of the basic Thrift Savings Plan basic funds continued inching up in July, with only the S Fund, pegged to stocks of small and medium-sized U.S. companies, dipping into the red for the month.

Tags: TSP , pay and benefits , retirement , Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board ,

Wednesday - 08/01/2012, 04:11pm EDT

OMB to begin planning for sequestration

Faced with congressional inaction in averting looming across-the-board cuts that take effect in January, the Office of Management and Budget will begin meeting with agency leaders to discuss how the cuts will be implemented. In a memo to agency heads, OMB Director Jeff Zients said his office will consult with agencies to determine which budget accounts and programs are exempt from sequestration.

Tags: OMB , Jeff Zients , budget , sequestration , Congress , Sequestration Transparency Act , House Armed Service Committee ,

Tuesday - 07/31/2012, 06:20pm EDT

Labor Dept. says defense layoffs 'speculative,' no need for warning

Defense industry executives have spent the last few weeks warning that across-the-board budgets cuts that go into effect in January, could force them to issue notifications to employees in the fall to warn of impending layoffs. However, in a new memo issued Monday, the Labor Department said the lack of clarity about how the cuts would be applied means it would be "inappropriate" to issue Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act notifications.

Tags: Labor , Jane Oates , budget , sequestration , industry , defense industry , Buck McKeon , House Armed Services Committee ,

Monday - 07/30/2012, 09:11pm EDT

Bill demanding details on sequestration heads to President's desk

Legislation forcing the White House to explain how the across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration will affect individual agencies is now waiting for President Barack Obama's signature. The Senate unanimously approved the Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012 Wednesday, which requires the administration to detail within 30 days how the $1.2 trillion over 10 years in automatic cuts will be applied. The House passed its version of the bill last week in a 414-2 vote.

Tags: Congress , House , Senate , budget , OMB , sequestration , Paul Ryan , Patty Murray , John McCain , Sequestration Transparency Act ,

Thursday - 07/26/2012, 03:36pm EDT

Inspector General: SSA sitting on $134 million in uncashed checks

The inspector general for the Social Security Administration estimated the agency is sitting on about $134 million for benefit checks that sit uncashed by recipients for more than a year - money subsequently returned to the agency. But the IG report found most of the recipients who didn't cash their checks are still eligible for the assistance and the SSA could take additional steps to ensure they receive them.

Tags: SSA , Dean Landis , improper payments , SSA IG , management , oversight

Tuesday - 07/24/2012, 07:58pm EDT

House passes bill requiring White House to hand over sequestration details

The House handily approved a bipartisan bill requiring the Obama administration to provide more information about how automatic, across-the-board cuts, known as sequestration, will be implemented starting in January. While the vote cut across party lines, lawmakers continue to disagree about ways to come up with alternatives.

Tags: OMB , budget , Congress , House , sequestration , Paul Ryan , Chris Van Hollen , Todd Young , Jeff Zients , defense industry ,

Wednesday - 07/18/2012, 05:06pm EDT

OMB: Contingency operations subject to sequestration

The Office of Management and Budget has reiterated to lawmakers that the automatic, across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration will apply to wartime funding. In a June 15 letter, to Rep. Buck McKeon, the chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, Office of Management and Budget Acting Director Jeff Zients wrote that the Budget Control Act allowed no "flexibility" to exempt Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO), from sequestration.

Tags: Congress , House , OCO , contingency operations , Buck McKeon , Ileana Ros-Lehtinen , Mike Rogers , sequestration , budget , Jeff Zients , OMB ,

Friday - 06/22/2012, 06:21pm EDT

Analysis: Sequestration would drive contractors over 'fiscal cliff'

Defense contractors are growing increasingly worried about the automatic, across-the-board budget cuts, known as sequestration, which are set to take effect in January. Marion Blakey, the president and CEO of the Aerospace Industries Association, said the cuts would hit the defense industry particularly hard.

Tags: Marion Blakey , AIA , industry , acquisition , DoD , sequestration , In Depth , Francis Rose ,

Monday - 06/18/2012, 09:59pm EDT
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