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    Pay & Benefits Watch: Benefits Breakthroughs

    Pay & Benefits Watch: Benefits Breakthroughs
    Federal employees are set to receive smaller raises than they've become accustomed to, and lawmakers failed to secure civilians the same pay hike as their military counterparts next year. But despite that setback, 2009 was a big year for federal pay and benefits. Congress passed long-delayed changes to federal benefits policy and rolled back the Pentagon's controversial pay-for-performance system. A new ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Federal Intern Program Blasted as Undermining Open Market Hiring

    WASHINGTON, DC - If you think the word "intern" refers just to the legions of eager young folks who descend on Washington each summer, providing cheap labor by day and guzzling beer at night, think again. When Uncle Sam talks about interns, he might mean the college students who get a few months of valuable on-the-job experience, but he also could ...
    Published about 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Senate approves debt ceiling increase

    The Senate Thursday passed legislation to increase the statutory debt limit to $14.3 trillion, a $1.9 trillion boost, after adopting a pay/go amendment requiring any mandatory spending increases or tax cuts to be offset. "We've gone to the restaurant; we've eaten the meal, and now the only question is whether we are going to pay the check," Senate Finance Committee Chairman ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Obama Extends Benefits to Same-Sex Partners of Federal Employees

    WASHINGTON, DC - President Obama on Wednesday ordered federal agencies to extend a range of benefits to same-sex domestic partners of their employees. "For far too long, many of our government's hard-working, dedicated [lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender] employees have been denied equal access to the basic rights and benefits their colleagues enjoy," Obama wrote in a memo to the heads ...
    Published about 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Why People Dislike Government and Why It Matters

    Why People Dislike Government and Why It Matters
    WASHINGTON, DC - new Pew poll finds historic levels of unhappiness about the federal government and its role in the lives of average Americans, unrest that is at the foundation of what is shaping up to be a strongly anti-incumbent political year. The current conditions in public opinion amount to a "perfect storm" of disgust/distrust toward government, according to Pew poll ...
    Published about 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Defense Authorization Bill Repeals NSPS

    Defense Authorization Bill Repeals NSPS
    Federal employees and their unions should remember Oct. 7, 2009: It's the day they got to cross several items off their wish list. The conference committee working on a compromise version of the Defense authorization bill (pdf) delivered several long-sought reforms impacting current and former federal employees, their salaries and the way the government measures their performance. The big one: a ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rated: +1
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    Swine Flu: 10 Things You Need to Know

    Swine Flu: 10 Things You Need to Know
    Since it first emerged in April, the global swine flu epidemic has sickened more than 1 million Americans and killed about 500. It's also spread around the world, infecting tens of thousands and killing nearly 2,000. This summer, the virus has been surprisingly tenacious in the U.S., refusing to fade away as flu viruses usually do. And health officials predict a ...
    Published almost 9 years ago | Rated: +2
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    Claims Fall; When Jobs Will Come is Anyone's Guess

    Claims Fall; When Jobs Will Come is Anyone's Guess
    WASHINGTON — With the sputtering job market flashing an encouraging sign — unemployment claims at their lowest point since January — the White House announced a summit Thursday to try to speed the day when hiring finally starts again. While President Barack Obama called the new jobless figures hopeful, economists think claims will probably stay too high to indicate even a ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rated: +1
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    Clean-Energy Jobs Touch Off Bidding Wars Between States

    Clean-Energy Jobs Touch Off Bidding Wars Between States
    When Arizona economic development officials look across their state, they envision the Saudi Arabia of solar. The state has sun, land, workers and proximity to California, the biggest solar market in the U.S. Yet for years, Arizona has failed to attract the big solar manufacturers that build the mirrors, panels and other components for solar equipment. In the past three years, ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rated: +1
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    DEA Crackdown Hurts Nursing Home Residents Who Need Pain Drugs

    DEA Crackdown Hurts Nursing Home Residents Who Need Pain Drugs
    Heightened efforts by the Drug Enforcement Administration to crack down on narcotics abuse are producing a troubling side effect by denying some hospice and elderly patients needed pain medication, according to two Senate Democrats and a coalition of pharmacists and geriatric experts. Tougher enforcement of the Controlled Substances Act, which tightly restricts the distribution of pain medicines such as morphine and ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Minnesota Public-Sector Jobs Benefit Most From Stimulus

    Madison — The first solid - if still incomplete - employment numbers for federal stimulus spending by Wisconsin state government show that retaining government positions was job one. Three-fourths of 8,284 stimulus-related jobs accounted for so far were public-sector posts protected by the federal infusion into state and local government coffers, Gov. Jim Doyle's office reported. That included teachers, police officers ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Transportation Department furloughs end

    Transportation Department furloughs end
    Furloughs at the Department of Transportation have come to an end and employees are to return to work Wednesday. In a press release Tuesday evening, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said, "I am pleased that the Senate has acted to break its logjam and extend the Highway Trust Fund for another 30 days. This means that our valued employees may return to ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Federal Charity Drive Reaches Out to Young Donors

    Since he arrived at the Office of Personnel Management in April, Director John Berry has been an active advocate for federal charitable giving. The summer-long Feds Feed Families canned food drive collected more than 1 million pounds of goods for food banks nationwide, and Berry is confident that federal employees of all ages also will deliver for the 2009 Combined Federal ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Stimulus Saves Oregon Jobs, But Most Are In Government

    Stimulus Saves Oregon Jobs, But Most Are In Government
    Federal stimulus spending has created or saved thousands of Oregon jobs, state officials boasted Monday, but at least three out of every four positions were in government work, according to the state's own figuring. The lion's share of the money -- about $750 million, went to beefing up entitlement programs, such as Medicaid, unemployment benefits and food stamps. But the remaining ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rated: +3
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    Field Poll Finds Californians Want State Government Overhauled

    Field Poll Finds Californians Want State Government Overhauled
    Frustrated California voters think a state government overhaul is needed, but a majority believe it shouldn't be so easy for them to change the state's constitution at the ballot box, a new Field Poll has found. Raising the ballot box threshold for approving a constitutional amendment from a majority to two-thirds was favored by 56 percent in the poll and opposed ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Phasing Out Wind Farm Tax Credit Divides Oregon Groups

    Phasing Out Wind Farm Tax Credit Divides Oregon Groups
    Proposed changes to rein in state tax incentives for renewable energy projects would do little in the short run to reduce subsidies going to the large, utility scale wind farms that are capturing the lion's share of the incentives. The 13 proposed large-scale wind farms that have submitted applications for Oregon's Business Energy Tax Credit would be eligible for up to ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Military 'Mentor' Pay a Main Factor in Review of Program

    WASHINGTON — Defense Secretary Robert Gates' decision announced Wednesday to order a review of the Pentagon's payments to retired senior officers for their advice was prompted in part by how much these "mentors" get paid. A USA TODAY review found: • The Navy pays its mentors an average of about $330 per hour, including expenses, according to its budget. • The ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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    12 die in dual shootings at Fort Hood, Texas

    FORT HOOD, Texas – A soldier opened fire at a U.S. Army base in Fort Hood, Texas on Thursday, unleashing a stream of gunfire that left 12 people dead and 31 wounded. Authorities killed the gunman, and apprehended two other soldiers suspected in the attack. The shooting began around 1:30 p.m., Lt. Gen. Bob Cone said at a news conference. He ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rated: +1
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    Defense Police Bill Could Affect Insourcing Efforts

    Defense Police Bill Could Affect Insourcing Efforts
    Many federal service contractors could see their jobs brought back in-house if provisions in the House and Senate Defense authorization bills are passed into law, according to an industry group. The House version of the policy measure includes an amendment sponsored by Rep. John Sarbanes, D-Md., that would give "special consideration" to federal employees for any function that has been performed ...
    Published about 8 years ago | Rate This
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    Girding For An Uphill Battle for Military Recruits

    Girding For An Uphill Battle for Military Recruits
    It's tough enough selling military service to teenagers who might not be so keen on getting their heads shaved or buy the whole "we do more by 9 a.m." line. And the fact that enlisting today could very well mean a visit to the front lines doesn't help, either. But according to a new report, there are other factors that make ...
    Published over 8 years ago | Rate This
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