Editor's Corner

Proposed rule would prohibit contractors from retaliating against workers who discuss pay

A Labor Department proposed rule would prohibit federal contractors from discriminating against employees and applicants who inquire or discuss compensation. "Workers cannot solve a problem unless they are able to identify it," said Patricia Shiu, director of the DOL's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs in a Sept. 15 statement. "And they cannot identify it if they aren't free to talk about it without fear of reprisal."

House committee approves legislation to give IGs more power

A House committee Wednesday passed legislation that would make it easier for inspectors general to compel agencies to hand over information during investigations. The bill (H.R.5492) would allow inspectors general to write testimonial subpoenas for federal government contractors and former employees. That would strengthen the independence of inspectors general and allow them investigate agencies with less obstruction, a Sept. 17 statement from the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee says.

VA plans to bump doctor pay to recruit new talent

The Veterans Affairs Department plans to bump pay for VA doctors and dentists in an effort to recruit more top talent, a Sept. 18 Federal Register Notice says. "These annual pay ranges are intended to enhance VA flexibility to recruit, develop and retain the most highly qualified providers to serve our nation's veterans and maintain a standard of excellence in the VA healthcare system," the notice says.

House passes stop-gap spending measure

With time running out before the fiscal year ends, the House Wednesday night overwhelmingly approved a stop-gap measure to fund the government through Dec. 11 once the new fiscal years starts Oct. 1. Under the bill (H.J.Res.124), which passed by a vote of 319-108, the government would be funding at fiscal 2014 levels and doesn't address federal employee pay raises. That paves the way for President Obama's authorization of a 1 percent pay raise for feds.

GSA focuses on environment with Green Proving Ground, FBI consolidation plans

Two recent announcements from the General Services Administration demonstrate how federal building management is increasingly focused on environmental innovation and emerging technologies, as well as environmental risk management.


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Federal Chief Information Officer Steven VanRoekel will be leaving his post at the Office of Management and Budget, said an Obama administration official speaking on background Sept. 19. VanRoekel will become the chief innovation officer at the U.S. Agency for International Development, where he will work with the agency's Ebola response team.


Privacy research is the next frontier to be tackled by the Networking and Information Technology Research and Development program.  NITRD, the IT research and development program that encourages collaboration across federal departments, will formulate a National Privacy Research Strategy says a  notice  from the National Science Foundation.