The report finds that the 152-year old agency faces challenges in dealing with the decline of print and rise of digital publishing, including critical matters such as publishing formats, metadata, authentication, cataloging, dissemination, preservation, public access, and disposition. Publisher of both print and digital editions of the Congressional Record and Federal Register, the GPO also manages the Federal Depository Library Program and provides digital access to federal information through the Federal Digital System.
The administration asserts that automatic cuts to education will eliminate 70,000 young children from Head Start, put 10,000 teacher jobs at risk, and potentially result in slashing funding for up to 7,200 special education teachers, aides, and staff. The White House also warns that if a sequester takes effect, up to 2,100 fewer food inspections could occur, putting families at risk and costing billions in lost food production.
The Veterans Affairs Department has not fixed problems with scheduling follow-up medical exams for temporarily disabled veterans, costing the department millions of dollars each year, witnesses told the House Veterans' Affairs Committee. The department risks overpaying some veterans by $1.1 billion for the period of 2011 to 2016.
President Obama nominated Recreational Equipment Inc.--better known as REI-- Chief Executive Officer Sally Jewell to replace Ken Salazar as interior secretary. Energy Secretary Steven Chu, a Nobel Prize-winning biophysicist, has also said he will leave the Energy Department after a successor is confirmed.
Government fiscal reform needs to come in the form of accountability, prioritizing by need and training if long term success is to be seen, witnesses told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. In a hearing Tuesday, witnesses outlined various waste and changes that could be made while offering different thoughts on sequestration-level cuts of roughly 10 to 15 percent.
According to the Center for Media and Democracy SourceWatch, the nonprofit IER is an arm of the American Energy Alliance, which advocates drilling for oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and in U.S. coastal waters. The AEA also has a strong link to Koch Industries, the Kansas-based multinational run by Charles and David Koch, brothers who are strong supporters of right-wing causes.
The IRS is slowly improving how it hires and manages its workforce, a Treasury audit (.pdf) found, adding that without continued focus the agency could easily become overwhelmed by difficult new challenges.
The Small Business Administration will likely face significant staffing challenges in the event of another disaster like the 2005 Gulf Coast hurricanes because it cannot properly determine how much of its workforce would be available to respond, says the agency's inspector general.
The White House began accepting applications for the second round of the Presidential Innovation Fellows program Feb. 5. The fellowships, which last up to a year, bring in talent from the private sector to help the federal government innovate.
Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe says the Postal Service does not need Congressional approval to discontinue Saturday mail delivery and the 5-day delivery schedule will start in August 2013. Donahoe says package delivery services will stay on a 6-day schedule and post offices will remain open on Saturdays.
President Obama urged Congress Tueday to pass a small package of spending cuts and tax reforms that would head off the March 1 onset of sequestration and give more time to work out a long-term federal spending deal, although House Republicans quickly rejected any measure involving greater revenue collection.
The General Services Administration is seeking public comments on which green building certifications the federal government should use for new construction and modernization efforts. In a notice published Tuesday in the Federal Register, GSA announced a 60-day window for public comments on which certification systems "will be most likely to encourage a comprehensive and environmentally sound approach to the certification of green federal buildings."
If current law holds, the CBO says the 2013 deficit would be $845 billion. But some major decisions--whether to let sequestration go into effect in early March, whether to shut down the government when the continuing resolution expires weeks later, and whether to raise the debt limit--could thwart that projection.
Pew's average of polls last found public trust in government in excess of 50 percent for a brief time after September 11, 2001. Other than that, Pew says a majority has not trusted government since before President Richard Nixon resigned, and currently only about a quarter of Americans do.
Reservists who complete 20 years of service must wait until age 60 to draw their retirement benefits, but active servicemembers draw their benefits whenever they retire. Reformers have long tried to reduce that inequality, and Rand looked at three possible ways to do so for a recent report.
The federal government could get a better value for purchased goods and services by increasing its use strategic sourcing and sharing related data, says Joe Jordan, administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy. Eventually, said Jordan, strategic sourcing could be used for $150 billion of the more than $500 billion the government annually spends on goods and services.
Partisanship within Congress has raised the stakes for Supreme Court statutory law rulings, since bipartisan legislative overrides of Supreme Court interpretations have greatly diminished and partisan overriding is much rarer, argues a paper from University of California-Irvine law professor Richard Hasen.
The Postal Service would be better poised for a long-term sustainable financial future if it increases revenue through improving logistical support for international small business commerce and cuts expenses by going green, say the service and its inspector general. It saved more than $52 million in 2012 through reduced consumption of energy, water, fuel and other resources.
Airline industry opposition is delaying Federal Aviation Administration from issuing guidance and training for safety measures and pilot hiring practices, say auditors at the Transportation Department's inspector general, with some of the resultant risks falling more heavily on smaller carriers.