Friday morning federal headlines – May 25, 2012

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

  • The Transportation Security Administration is hoping to buy Apple products. The agency’s wish list includes iPads, iPhones and Apple TVs. TSA has a lot of Microsoft and Blackberry products but said it needs to buy Apple to help meet a public-driven need for more mobility. The agency is planning multiple contracts that could be worth $3 million over three years. (TSA)
  • President Barack Obama has moved quickly to replace Gregory Jaczko as chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. He nominated Allison Mcfarlane to the Senate-confirmed position. Mcfarlane is an associate professor of environmental science at George Mason University. In 2006, she wrote a book critical of the government’s plans to store nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, Nev. That plan was killed by Jaczko’s NRC. He resigned amid allegations of an abusive management style. But Jaczko said he would leave only when a successor was confirmed. (Federal News Radio)
  • Jeff Neely, the General Services Administration regional commissioner behind the infamous Las Vegas conference, has left the agency. Neely, the Public Buildings Service Commissioner for Region 9, was on administrative leave. An agency spokesman confirmed he was no longer employed there. Neely was at the heart of a scandal that forced the resignation of GSA administrator Martha Johnson in April. It followed revelations of a nearly $1 million conference in 2010. Neely had told his minions to make the event over the top. The spending later came to light in a report from GSA’s inspector general. (Federal News Radio)
  • The president nominated a new leader for the Office of Government Ethcis. Walter Shaub will take the director’s chair, if the Senate confirms him. He has been OGE’s deputy general counsel since 2008. Earlier, the White House said Shaub worked at Shaw, Bransford, Veilleux and Roth, where he focused on federal employment law. He’s also worked in legal jobs at Veterans Affairs and Health and Human Services. (White House)
  • The Digital Government strategy released by the White House this week was a grassroots effort led by agency CIOs. Federal CIO Steven VanRoekel said it was not a top-down fiat. He told Federal News Radio, the strategy was formed initially during an offsite meeting last winter. Ideas from that session also found their way into other IT policies, including the shared services strategy. VanRoekel said the CIO community is rallying behind the Digital Government strategy. He said OMB also included acquisition and finance people in forming the strategies. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Justice Department is accusing two of its prosecutors of reckless professional misconduct. DoJ said Joseph Bottini and James Goeke failed to disclose information favorable to the defendant, in the bungled corruption case against the late Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska). But the department said it wasn’t intentional. Stevens had been convicted of lying on Senate financial disclosure documents about home renovations and gifts from wealthy friends. A judge overturned that conviction in 2009, after the Justice Department admitted misconduct. Stevens died in a plane crash three years ago. An internal DoJ watchdog said the managers should suspend the prosecutors without pay. (Federal News Radio)