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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 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Senator Asks IRS to Report on Contractors' Unpaid Taxes

    Senator Asks IRS to Report on Contractors' Unpaid Taxes
    A day after a report released by the Internal Revenue Service showed that federal workers owe more than $3 billion in taxes from 2008, the ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee has asked the agency to turn its attention on contractors, specifically those working within Medicare and Medicaid programs. According to Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, the Government Accountability Office previously ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Senator puts blanket hold on presidential nominees

    Senator puts blanket hold on presidential nominees
    Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., has placed a blanket hold on all executive nominations on the Senate calendar in an effort to win concessions from the Obama administration and Pentagon on a variety of fronts affecting his home state, according to aides to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. Reid spokeswoman Regan Lachapelle said Shelby is blocking more than 70 pending nominations. ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Senate bill aims to boost small business contracting

    Civilian agencies might soon be required to set aside a percentage of funds from multiple-award, multiagency contracting vehicles for small businesses. The provision, included in the 2010 Small Business Contracting Improvements Act introduced by Sens. Mary Landrieu, D-La., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, on Thursday, would require agencies to reserve for small firms a yet undetermined portion of orders placed against federal ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Agencies Could Be Passing Over Good Job Candidates

    Federal agencies have room for improvement when it comes to assessing applicants for federal jobs, according to a new survey of government officials and observers. The report, released Thursday by the nonprofit Partnership for Public Service and PDRI, a human resources consulting firm, found government does a poor job of evaluating applicants for federal positions. During discussions with seven focus groups ...
    Published about 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Time For a Plain-Language Revolution

    Sometimes Uncle Sam sounds like he has marbles in his mouth. Read, if you can, the accompanying excerpt from an Education Department regulation, which was printed in Wednesday's Federal Register. This one sentence has more than 220 words, nearly the equivalent of a typed page, double-spaced. It's typical of impenetrable fedspeak that produces more indigestion than information. But help is on ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Feds, Retailers Flooded With Job Applications

    Feds, Retailers Flooded With Job Applications
    WASHINGTON - From federal government clerk positions to grocery store cashiers, the competition for jobs is phenomenal. Applications for all types of positions are flooding in. "We are pretty much overwhelmed with the number of applications that we are receiving for every job posting," says Deputy Associate Director of the Center for Talent and Capacity Policy at the U.S. Office of ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    OMB Will Create New Performance Management Framework for Agencies

    OMB Will Create New Performance Management Framework for Agencies
    The Office of Management and Budget is developing a new federal performance management framework, the government's chief performance officer told lawmakers on Thursday. The approach will incorporate elements from other initiatives, including the Bush administration's Performance Assessment Rating Tool and the 1993 Government Performance and Results Act, OMB's Jeff Zients told a Senate subcommittee. "Our governmentwide performance measurement framework will be ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Fiery Remarks Leads Obama Adviser to Resign

    Fiery Remarks Leads Obama Adviser to Resign
    WASHINGTON (AP) -- The White House environmental adviser under fire for inflammatory statements made before he joined the administration resigned after what he called a "vicious smear campaign against me." Van Jones "understood that he was going to get in the way" of President Barack Obama's agenda, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said Sunday. The resignation was disclosed without advance ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    18,000 employees accept Postal Service buyout

    As another deadline looms, approximately 18,000 U.S. Postal Service employees so far have accepted a $15,000 buyout offer, officials have reported. The final tally of buyout acceptances from each job category isn't available yet, said Yvonne Yoerger, a Postal Service spokeswoman. It's also too soon to determine the agency's savings as a result of the buyout, she added. Employees were required ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Bill With 2 Percent Pay Raise Awaits Obama's Signature

    Bill With 2 Percent Pay Raise Awaits Obama's Signature
    The Senate on Sunday passed a catchall spending bill that includes a 2 percent pay raise for civilian federal employees in 2010. That figure is in keeping with President Obama's request, but contrary to his Nov. 30 proposal to freeze locality pay, a portion of the raise would vary depending on costs of labor where employees are based. Lawmakers granted civilians ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Bye-bye to 'GS, And Other Trial Balloons From OPM's John Berry

    If the federal civil service had a flag, it would be flying upside down. The civil service is in distress -- not dead, but in need of rescue. Recognizing this, John Berry, the Office of Personnel Management director, ran some sweeping ideas up the flagpole on Monday to see who salutes. At the same time he heaped praise on the "unsung ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Insurance Providers Drop Out of Federal Employee Health Program

    Insurance Providers Drop Out of Federal Employee Health Program
    Some federal employees will have to choose new health plans during open season this year because their insurance providers are leaving the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program, or reducing the number of areas they cover. "Some employees still might not receive instructions to change plans during open season," Kathleen M. McGettigan, deputy associate director of the Center for Retirement and Insurance ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    22 million Bush-era e-mails found

    WASHINGTON - Computer technicians have found 22 million missing White House e-mail messages from the administration of President George W. Bush, and the Obama administration is searching for dozens more days' worth of potentially lost e-mail from the Bush years, according to two private groups that sued over the Bush White House's failure to install an electronic recordkeeping system. The groups ...
    Published over 4 years ago | Rate This
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    Pay and Benefits Watch: Back in Session

    As Congress returns from a not-so-relaxing August recess, health care reform tops the legislative to-do list. But lawmakers also face several pieces of legislation affecting the federal workforce, which were left unresolved at the end of July. The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee on Thursday will consider H.R. 1881, a bill that would eliminate the Transportation Security Administration's special pay ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Employees Face Big Hike in Health-Care Costs

    Federal government employees can expect a big jump in their health-care costs in 2010, officials said Tuesday. Employees enrolled in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program will pay an average 8.8 percent more in health-care costs, according to figures released by the Office of Personnel Management. The increase averages $5.98 per paycheck for individual health-care coverage, and a $12.87 increase for ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Obama Picks Colorado Official to Lead U.S. Forest Service

    WASHINGTON (AP) - Congressional aides say the Obama administration has chosen a Colorado natural resources official to be the new agriculture undersecretary in charge of the U.S. Forest Service. Harris Sherman, executive director of the Colorado Department of Natural Resources, is to be nominated soon, they said. The congressional aides familiar with the decision spoke on condition of anonymity because the ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Workers to Have Say on Higher Health Premiums

    Current and former federal employees angered by premium increases in the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program will get their day before Congress on Wednesday, when senators hope to get answers about why the impending price jump is warranted and what the government did to inform participants. Most federal and postal employees are eligible for the program, which is run by ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Discrimination Complaints Up Slightly

    Complaints from the federal workforce alleging discrimination by the government increased slightly in the latest figures from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, ending a recent downward trend. The EEOC's Annual Report on the Federal Workforce notes 16,752 complaints alleging employment discrimination filed against the federal government in Fiscal Year 2008 -- up 2.4 percent from the prior year. The complaints ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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    Patent Office Weighs Ways To Cut Growing Backlog

    Patent Office Weighs Ways To Cut Growing Backlog
    In a move designed to improve employee morale and to help reduce a growing backlog, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office proposed changes Wednesday to its way of determining how long a patent examiner has to complete a patent examination and the incentives that examiners earn. The modifications, which must be approved by agency employees in the coming weeks, would be ...
    Published almost 5 years ago | Rate This
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