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Search Tags: Richard Burr
The Veterans Affairs Department says its claims backlog is far below its peak of three years ago. VA credits its progress to several changes under the Veterans Benefits Management System or VBMS. Federal News Radio's Executive Editor Jason Miller joined Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on the Federal Drive and described how VA is reducing the claims backlog. Read Jason's related article.
Allison Hickey, VA's undersecretary for benefits, said VBMS has transformed the agency from a paper system to one that mostly relies on electronic data. Some lawmakers express concern about the way the agency is measuring how it reduces the number of veterans waiting for benefits.
Tags: technology , management , Veterans Affairs Department , Allison Hickey , Mike Michaud , House Veterans Affairs Committee , Senate Veterans Affairs Committee , VBMS , claims backlog , ACT-IAC , Management of Change , Jason Miller
A new bill introduced by a trio of Republican senators would end the defined benefit portion of FERS coverage for new federal employees hired within six months of the bill's passage. Sponsors of the bill say the Public-Private Employee Retirement Parity Act would align federal retirement benefits more closely with those earned in the private sector.
Rep. Jeff Miller (R-Fla.), the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, and Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.), the ranking member of the Senate committee, called on VA Secretary Eric Shinseki to fire his chief of staff, John Gingrich after an inspector general report said he failed to ask the right questions before approving two training conferences. The conferences costs $6.1 million, with as much as $762,000 in questionable spending.
Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) is introducing legislation this week to consolidate the Energy Department and the Environmental Protection Agency into a single agency.
Lawmakers want an inspector general investigation to see how long veterans must wait for mental health treatment.
The Public-Private Employee Retirement Act of 2011, introduced in the Senate, would end the defined benefit portion of feds' retirement starting with new hires in 2013.
Sen. Richard Burr (R.-N.C.) introduced legislation forming the Commerce and Workforce Department using recommendations of GAO and the deficit commission. Thirty-five offices would be consolidated into 12 and funding of seven programs or initiatives would be reduced or eliminated.