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Search Tags: Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee
The U.S. Postal Service's worsening financial situation led Postmaster General Pat Donahoe to announce last week the agency would end Saturday mail delivery beginning in August. But lawmakers on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee were divided over Donahoe's announcement. The postmaster general told the committee during a hearing Wednesday the decision was necessary to save $2 billion a year and to begin shoring up the service's funding shortfalls.
Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said they were committed to working together to pass postal reform legislation in the new Congress. Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe renewed his call for congressional action, saying the agency faces an "unsustainable" financial path.
The election Tuesday could bring with it a number of changes to the makeup and leadership of key congressional committees with oversight of the federal workforce and management. The changes to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and others are expected from retirements, committee term limits and a few close races.
Tags: 2012 election , Congress , House , Senate , House Oversight and Government Reform Committee , Joe Lieberman , Claire McCaskill , Tom Carper , Scott Brown , Carl Levin , John McCain , Appropriations Committee , Paul Ryan
Three senators are proposing major reforms to the federal government's acquisition process.
In a routine pre-hearing briefing call, Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee staff members asked Brian Miller about his staff's decision to knock on a GSA employee's door after 11 p.m. at the SmartPay conference last month. Miller and acting GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini are scheduled to testify Sept. 12 before the committee on changes the agency has made in light of the conference spending scandals.
Longstanding problems with integration put DHS' mission to protect the country at risk, former leaders and lawmakers said. Nine years after it was created, the department still struggles to make its many components and agencies work as one.
The Homeland Security Department showed lawmakers and staff how easy it is to create a spear phishing attack against a federal employee using free, open-source tools. The agency also said the Einstein 3 program is under development and will rely on vendors to provide intrusion prevention services. Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) said he expects the cyber bill to go to the Senate floor for debate no later than July.
The two influential senators say the mistakes the Defense Department and others made in the 1990s during the last serious budget reductions can't be repeated this time around. Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.) said budget cuts shouldn't be balanced on the backs of the acquisition workforce. Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) added reductions in acquisition staff mean the government will pay more for goods and services.
The leaders of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee gave the acting GSA administrator 21 days to answer 41 multi-part questions about the agency's efforts to prevent waste, fraud and abuse following the now infamous Western Regions Conference. Senators also recommended the agency review all other recent GSA conferences for possible problems.
Acting General Services Administration chief Dan Tangherlini said the 'Hats Off' incentive program has been suspended. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), who has promised an investigation into agency spending, said she's not sure GSA's actions are enough to change the culture.