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Search Tags: OPM
The Office of Personnel Management updated its operating status early Thursday morning to "open." OPM says furloughed employees are expected to return to work Thursday, absent other instructions from their employing agencies. The Office of Management and Budget issued guidance to department and agency heads early Thursday, instructing them to reopen offices promptly and recall all furloughed employees.
Federal employees who are "excepted" from furloughs have remained on the job despite the government shutdown, which is now stretching into its third week. OPM updated its shutdown guidance Friday to include instructions on how to handle "brief or intermittent unpaid absences" by excepted federal employees. Overall, OPM has made more than a dozen changes to its shutdown guidance since congressional appropriations for fiscal 2014 lapsed two weeks ago.
About 5,800 federal employees filed retirement applications in September, according to new data provided from the Office of Personnel Management. That's some 2,600 fewer than OPM expected to receive and more than 6,000 fewer than submitted applications in September 2012. That unexpected drop allowed OPM to process more applications than it anticipated and to make significant progress clearing a longstanding backlog of cases.
The Office of Personnel Management has made it official: Lawmakers and their staff members are required to purchase health insurance from one of the Affordable Care Act's health-insurance exchanges --but the government will still contribute toward their premiums. OPM issued the final rule, which goes into effect immediately, Wednesday.
EPA also issues guidance to agencies, and OPM updates the governmentwide shutdown guidance.
The cash-strapped U.S. Postal Service says it can return to being profitable and begin to pay down its debt if Congress gives it the authority to overhaul its health benefits structure. Postmaster General Pat Donahoe told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee Thursday that launching a postal-specific health care plan would help save the agency $8 billion annually through 2016.
Concerns over missed red flags in Navy Yard shooter Aaron Alexis's background have thrust the federal government's security clearance program into the spotlight. But the problem is likely bigger than one company. The Office of Personnel Management — and its contractors — which accounts for 90 percent of the federal government's background investigations, has faced persistent challenges with security clearances over the years, according to the Government Accountability Office.
The Office of Personnel Management's proposed changes to the Combined Federal Campaign, the annual federal fundraising drive, are getting a frosty reception from local charities. OPM wants to do away with the local volunteer coordinating committees and put in place a set of more centralized regional committees established by OPM. It also wants to require charities to pay an application fee and eliminate cash and check donations in favor of electronic donations. However, some charities say the proposed changes would likely lead to fewer charities joining the program -- and fewer total donations.
Health premiums for federal employees are going up an average of 3.7 percent, according to the Office of Personnel Management. Postal Service employees, who separate negotiating rights over premiums, will see, on average, a 3.8 percent increase.
The Navy, in a report released Monday, revealed that the shooter, Aaron Alexis, did not disclose a 2004 arrest or some financial problems when he filled out his application for a security clearance when he joined the Navy as a reservist several years later. And officials said the background report given to the Navy at the time, also failed to reveal that he had shot out the tires of another person's car during a 2004 dispute in Seattle.