Melissa Dawkins

  • Bill aims to slash Medicare waste and fraud

    The Medicare program made $44 billion in improper payments in 2013. A bipartisan bill designed to prevent fraudsters from milking the system calls for contractors to increase accuracy and for beneficiaries to report fraud.

  • Security clearance process in need of makeover, expert says

    In the wake of the NSA security leak, questions are being raised about the security clearance process for which Edward Snowden was subjected. One security clearance expert tells Federal News Radio, that while the process for granting security clearances has become more efficient over the past few years, it has not become more effective.

  • Contractors with security clearances lack path to report problems

    Government contractors with security clearances, such as Edward Snowden, aren’t legally protected from whistleblowing even by going through the proper channels. But John Mahoney, of the law firm Tully Rinckey, said Snowden should have defaulted to the standard whistleblowing procedure used by government employees in the intelligence community, who are protected under the law.

  • NSA leak case gives vendors reason to reevaluate personnel

    Intelligence community contractors, similar to Booz Allen, likely are reevaluating employees who have access to classified information in order to identify any questionable personnel, according to Steve Ryan, leader of government strategies practice group at McDermott, Will and Emery law firm.

  • NIST to set standards for biometric recognition technology

    In an effort to incorporate iris, facial and fingerprint recognition technologies across the government, the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee pressed the National Institute of Standards and Technology to set a date for the release of national biometric recognition standards.

  • Supreme Court’s DOMA decision grants thousands of feds access to benefits

    With the Supreme Court’s overturning of the Defense of Marriage Act, same-sex spouses of both federal employees and military personnel will be eligible for the same benefits previously only available to opposite-sex couples.

  • Faulty data may be driving Pentagon’s BRAC request

    The metrics used by the Defense Department to help determine whether it needs an official round of Base Realignments and Closures (BRAC) is in need of an update, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office. Current procedures lack the precision needed to give the Pentagon accurate data on the number of excess properties it actually owns.

  • Alternative energy key to DoD’s battlefield strategy

    The Department of Defense is looking to utilize alternative fuel sources in order to respond to changing operational energy needs on the battlefield.

  • SBA implements stricter requirements for size certifications

    The SBA updated regulations governing how small businesses represent their size and status in order to guard against businesses falsely representing themselves as “small” to garner government contracts.

  • Another furlough Friday, relief possible for some

    Thousands of federal employees at four separate government agencies are required to take an unpaid furlough day July 5. Meanwhile, employees at two government agencies could see a diminished impact of furloughs.