The Veterans Affairs Department is preparing a “State of VA” report on the challenges facing the agency, Secretary David Shulkin told reporters Wednesday. The report comes as VA quickly begins to plot some of its efforts to comply with the President’s government reorganization efforts during the fiscal 2018 budget cycle. VA is one of few civilian agencies that may see a major funding boost next year, according to the President’s budget proposal.
Some members of Congress are encouraged by a new solution to overhaul the outdated and lengthy appeals process for veterans. Members of the House and Senate Veterans Affairs Committee introduced new legislation Tuesday that would create three paths for veterans to move more quickly through the appeals process. VA has roughly 470,000 claims pending as of April 1.
The Navy brass have decided to buy a dozen new ships they’re calling a frigate. But it’s basically a littoral combat ship with some modifications. The Government Accountability Office found there’s too little information about the frigate for Congress to make informed decisions. Michele Mackin, director of acquisition and sourcing issues at GAO, provides details on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
In today’s Top Federal Headlines, the Follow the Rules Act gets through the House. The legislation tidies up a few loopholes in laws protecting whistleblowers at federal agencies.
NASA is planning a series of interim steps aimed at someday getting astronauts further than low earth orbit. Kevin Fagedes, project manager for space operations in the NASA Inspector General’s office, offers a detailed look at NASA’s plans on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
The Office of Personnel Management was the sixth agency to achieve final operating capability on an insider threat program. But OPM is among the few agencies who have set up such programs. Small agencies say cultural barriers, lack of resources and legal and privacy questions are among the obstacles preventing them from meeting the goal, but insider threat experts say those problems aren’t unique.
Nearly a third of federal contract spending or around $130 billion a year goes through indefinite delivery – indefinite quantity contracts (IDIQ). It’s a surprisingly durable practice. But the product mix has shifted and not all the buying is competitive. Bill Woods, Director of IT acquisition and sourcing management issues at the Government Accountability Office, provides an update on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Open government advocates, industry, and agency officials are eagerly looking toward the May 9 implementation date for standardized federal spending information.
The executive order establishes the Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protections as a new entity within VA. The new office will identify barriers and duplicative processes and resources to quickly disciplining and firing VA employees for poor performance or misconduct.
The Government Accountability Office’s report on reducing agency fragmentation, overlap, and duplication shows the federal government could save tens of billions of dollars — if agencies choose to act on the recommendations and Congress offers its help.
The U.S. State Department has removed its promotional posting about President Donald Trump’s Florida resort, after a storm of ethics criticism
In today’s Top Federal Headlines, DHS’ Office of Inspector General says phone scammers are making it appear as if the IG’s office is calling people in need of personally identifiable information.
The EPA said it will continue an external hiring freeze as part of its efforts to meet the White House’s government reorganization directive.
Largely under the radar, the Commerce Department has been building a network of public-private partnerships to boost U.S. manufacturing. It’s working under a law from 2014 known as the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act. The Government Accountability Office found that Commerce needs to do more to encompass participation by other federal agencies who contribute people and money. John Neumann, GAO’s director of natural resources and environment issues, shares more on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
Larry Allen, long time GSA sales consultant, joined Federal Drive with Tom Temin to explain why he opposes a new rule put in place by the General Services Administration to keep track of what is sold to the government in order to get the most out of its buying power