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Reducing high-risk contracts yields mixed results

Agencies failed to meet a lofty goal to cut spending on new contracts considered high-risk by 10 percent. But despite the inconclusive results, contracting experts and agency procurement chiefs told Federal News Radio there's more to evaluating the effort to reduce high-risk contracts than the failure to reach the goal. Federal News Radio examines this as part of the special report, The Obama Impact: Evaluating the Last Four Years.

Tags: OMB , OFPP , Dan Gordon , Debra Sonderman , Bill McNally , acquisition , acquisition policy , contracting , high-risk contracts , Obama Impact ,

Thursday - 09/20/2012, 03:54am EDT

White House warns of 'deeply destructive' cuts in sequestration report

The across-the-board budget cuts, known as sequestration, set to take effect Jan. 2 would be "deeply destructive" to national security and core civilian agency programs, according to a comprehensive report from the White House detailing the impact of the cuts on specific programs and accounts. The $109 billion in cuts coming next year split evenly between Defense civilian agency budgets would slash Defense discretionary spending by 9.4 percent and civilian agency spending by 8.2 percent.

Tags: budget , sequestration ,

Friday - 09/14/2012, 02:39pm EDT

Congress faces continuing resolution, sequestration and postal reform

Lawmakers returned to Washington, D.C., this week with a packed agenda. Topping the list of priorities is hammering out final details of a stopgap spending measure to keep the government running beyond the end of the fiscal year -- Sept. 30. Amid the election-year politicking, the list of unfinished business also includes legislation to restructure the financially ailing U.S. Postal Service and a cybersecurity bill that aims to safeguard the nation's critical infrastructure. Perhaps looming largest of all is what Congress plans to do about automatic, across-the-board cuts, known as sequestration, set to take effect Jan. 2. Failure to avert the cuts could send the country over a "fiscal cliff," budget experts warn.

Tags: Congress , House , Senate , budget , sequestration , John Boehner , Harry Reid , CR , USPS , postal reform , cybersecurity , Susan Collins , Jolie Lee , Amanda Iacone ,

Monday - 09/10/2012, 06:47pm EDT

Democrats' platform continues call for 'remaking' of government

The Democratic Party platform, released Tuesday, is short on specifics about the federal workforce, particularly relating to federal pay or the size of the federal workforce. However, the platform does cite President Barack Obama's efforts to pare back overly burdensome regulations and his proposed consolidation of federal agencies. "President Obama and the Democrats are committed to rethinking, reforming, and remaking our government so that it can meet the challenges of our time," the authors of the platform wrote.

Tags: Democratic platform , government reorganization , regulations , AFGE , J. David Cox , cybersecurity , cybersecurity udpate , Federal Drive

Tuesday - 09/04/2012, 03:58pm EDT

OMB: Spending bills exceed budget caps, could trigger cuts

Spending levels appropriated by Congress, so far, for fiscal 2013 fail to live within the limits set by last year's Budget Control Act (BCA), the Office of Management and Budget said in a report issued Monday. If Congress fails to adhere to the annual limits, OMB is required to enact automatic cuts to bring them back into balance, Acting OMB Director Jeffrey Zients wrote in a letter to President Barack Obama that preceded OMB's report.

Tags: OMB , Jeffrey Zients , appropriations , sequestration , budget ,

Tuesday - 08/21/2012, 05:57pm EDT

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
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