The House of Representatives voted Tuesday on its rules package for the 115th Congress, which reinstates a little-known provision from previous congressional sessions. The “Holman Rule” lets lawmakers offer amendments to appropriations packages on the House floor, which could cut an agency’s spending, the number of its employees or a person’s salary.
Election Day can be a whirlwind of campaign signs, crowded polling sites and an avalanche of social media posts. To help cut through the chaos, here’s Federal News Radio’s roundup of congressional races, presidential platforms and Hatch Act reminders.
Members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform criticized the General Services Administration for its inability to accurately track the inventory and status of donated surplus firearms to local law enforcement agencies.
Legislation to boost federal workers’ pay by 5.3 percent is set to be introduced by Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) The bill comes after President Barack Obama proposed a 1.6 percent increase in his fiscal 2017 budget.
The American Federation of Government Employees, along with some members of Congress, said a 5.3 percent pay raise for civilian and military personnel isn’t out of the question in 2017, after six years of nearly stagnant wages.
Two years ago, a federal appeals court ruled against a financial analyst and a military commissary employee who said they’d been summarily removed from their positions without being able to contest their agencies’ decisions before the Merit Systems Protection Board. At issue is a category of federal jobs called “noncritical sensitive.” Even though those workers don’t handle classified information, the government contends that airing their cases before MSPB could expose “sensitive” information — and the label now applies to about 200,000 Defense Department workers, according to two members of Congress who say they need more due process rights. Rep. Rob Wittman (R-Va.) and Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C.) introduced a bill this week to make clear that MSPB is allowed to hear those employees’ claims. Holmes Norton talked with Federal Drive with Tom Temin by phone about why the appeals court’s ruling needs to be overturned.
Now that the final votes have been counted in the 2014 midterm elections, Colleen Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, said she’s hoping that some new members will fight for the interests of government workers.
Federal News Radio examines what the winners of the midterm elections in Maryland, DC and Virginia could do for federal employees.
When Congress resumes, Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton is set to introduce a bill that directs federal agencies to give preferential points to federal government vendors based on their labor practices. Norton’s is the latest in a series of bills and orders designed to improve working conditions for federal contracting employees.
Federal workers to see as much as 50 percent less cubicle or office space as part of how agencies are reducing office space costs. Rep. Lou Barletta (R-Pa.) pressed GSA and others on their preparation to more efficiently deal with 100 million square feet of leased space that is scheduled to expire in the next five years.
Are you a federal employee who uses public transportation to get to work? Be prepared to shell out more for your commute. Because of congressional inaction, a tax subsidy for mass-transit commuters is set to drop nearly in half — from a maximum of $245 a month to $130.
The Office of Personnel Management told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee that the 50-year-old law creating the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP) has hurt its ability to keep the FEHBP up-to-date. The agency estimates billions in savings over the next decade should Congress approve the White House’s proposals in the 2014 budget request.
This week on AFGE’s “Inside Government” the program revisits several memorable interviews from 2012. Guests include Reps. Eleanor Holmes Norton, D-D.C., and Donna Christensen, D- Virgin Islands, and former Rep. Dennis Kucinich, D- Ohio, who participated in a congressional roundtable on health care reform. Sens. Tim Kaine, D-Va., and Ben Cardin, D-Md., and Rebuild the Dream President and Co-founder Van Jones also appear.
Per diem rates for work-related federal travel in 2013 are frozen at 2012 levels, according to the General Services Administration. GSA sets the allowances for lodging, meals and other incidental expenses for federal employees who must travel for work. The standard per diem rate is $123 ($77 lodging, $46 meals and incidental expenses).
House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee lawmakers were expected to ask the agency’s inspector general to look into the 14th Annual SmartPay conference happening this week in Nashville. GSA says all conferences must go through a multi-step approval process, including those already in the planning stages for 2012 and beyond.