Tuesday Morning Federal Newscast – October 19th

The Morning Federal Newscast is a daily compilation of the stories you hear Federal Drive hosts Tom Temin and Amy Morris discuss throughout the show each day. The Newscast is designed to give FederalNewsRadio.com users more information about the stories you hear on the air.

  • The Thrift Savings Plan will not get a budget hike in fiscal 2011. The board that runs the TSP has voted down a proposal to increase the budget by almost $5 million. GovExec reports that instead, the federal retirement program will run with the same amount of money that it had in fiscal 2010: $130 million. In fiscal 2010, the TSP under-spent by about $11 million.
  • Mid-term elections are two weeks away and the Office of Special Counsel is reminding federal employees not to bring politics to the office. One federal worker has lost her job, and another has been suspended for 120 days for Hatch Act violations. The Merit Systems Protection Board reports, a Bureau of Engraving and Printing program analyst was let go after forwarding partisan e-mails that solicited campaign contributions. An IRS non-supervisory worker was suspended after disseminating a fundraising e-mail to 44 co-workers.
  • The Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, which represents the marshals, is calling for censure of the airline executives. Federal Times reports, the airlines’ trade group told the Transportation Security Administration that having marshals sit in first class is disruptive and unnecessary. The union says making the request public could reveal marshals’ tactics to terrorists. Use of on-board air marshals increased after the 9/11 attacks.
  • No arrests have been made after a deadly shooting yesterday inside a Henning, Tennessee post office. Two female postal workers were shot to death. Police and witnesses say it happened during an apparent robbery attempt. Federal investigators have descended on the tiny town of about 1,200 people. Postal officials have offered a $25,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the killers.
  • CACI has done a little shopping, and has decided to buy TechniGraphics. That company is an imaging and geospatial services company. No word on how much the deal is for. TechniGraphics is based in Ohio but also has operations in Colorado and Spain. It has 450 employees. It provides digital maps to defense and intelligence customers. The Washington Business Journal reports, the majority of TechniGraphics employees have government security clearances.
  • A U.S. citizen convicted of scouting locations for the 2008 Mumbai attack says that Pakistan’s spy agency was deeply involved in the planning of the assault. David Headley tells Indian interrogators that officers from Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency gave him $25,000 to fund his scouting missions. He says he debriefed his handler every time he returned to Pakistan from Mumbai. He says his handler also made suggestions about how best to carry out the attack. The revelations were contained in the Indian government’s report on its June interrogation of Headley. The report, marked secret, was obtained by The Associated Press. The Mumbai attacks killed 166 people.
  • The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has launched an online form for individuals and companies to submit comments about Federal Register releases and industry filings. It’s a first for the CFTC. The agency said comments it receives via the online form will be published online as well — complete with any personally identifiable information included.
  • The National Nuclear Security Administration has created software to help its emergency response teams analyze data acquired during potential nuclear terrorism events. The Office of Emergency Operations’ X-Ray Toolkit, or XTK, replaces software used by the medical imaging industry that had been adapted for emergency use. XTK provides efficient transfer of data from the site of a potential incident to NNSA laboratories. When there is suspicious nuclear activity, NNSA dispatches Explosive Ordnance Disposal teams to prevent detonation.

More news links

Border Patrol arrests fall 17 percent in 2010


Study: Flight delays cost passengers $16.7 billion

Microsoft software head Ray Ozzie to depart

Labor ponders breaking up troubled whistleblower program (PEER press release)

Capitol Heights man sentenced to 4 years in prison for stealing the pay of U.S. Servicemen (DOJ press release)

CIA sues ex-agent for book’s breach of ‘secrecy’ (WashingtonTimes)


Coming up today on The DorobekInsider:

** The public is angry at Washington including federal workers. More analysis of that Washington Post poll. What will it mean for how you do your job? Insights from senior correspondent Mike Causey, and a representative from Federally Employed Women.

** And how do you protect your identity? It’s more then passwords. We’ll tell you about it.

Join Chris from 3 to 7 pm on 1500 AM or on your computer.