News

Lapses in IRS oversight put government at risk for ACA tax fruad, TIGTA says

The Internal Revenue Service didn't properly monitor the 50 different tax provisions related to the Affordable Care Act because of lapses in its information sharing system, according to an Aug. 20 report by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.

PSC calls for Labor to update contractor locality pay rates

The Professional Services Council is calling on the Labor Department to update the wage rate for certain federal contractors providing services across the country.

USPS could help neighborhoods by using data for urban planning and checking on elderly residents, IG says

The Postal Service inspector general thinks the role of the Postal Service could go beyond just delivering mail by further helping the neighborhoods they serve, according to an Aug. 24 USPS OIG blog post.

GSA launches portal for quick IT purchases

The General Services Administration has launched a program that the agency says will make it easier for the government to buy pre-competed IT products.

Agency watchdog finds NRC political appointees didn't interfere with FOIA requests

Congress requested that the NRC inspector general make sure that political appointees, also known as non-career officials, had not interfered with the FOIA process and inhibited transparency.

DOI mismanaged grants for university climate research partnerships, IG says

The inspector general found problems with several areas of the funding process involving the government-university partnerships, which provide scientific and technical information to combat climate change,

CRS: Oversight of intelligence community contractors nearly impossible due to classified data

Oversight of intelligence community contracts is extremely difficult because the government doesn't have reliable contracting data and most of the intelligence information is classified, says an Aug. 18 Congressional Research Service report that was obtained by the Federation of American Scientists.

SBA announces nearly $18M for American small businesses in the export trade

States will now have nearly $18 million more to help small businesses through a Small Business Administration program meant to promote American exports, according to an Aug. 24 SBA statement.

Army won't meet demands if it continues to draw down troops, says new RAND report

In the 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review, the Army said it could fulfill its mission even if troop numbers were cut to about 450,000, from the current 490,000 level, by fiscal 2018. But the Aug. 18 report from RAND says differently. 

New study finds young people aren't clamoring for federal jobs

Millennials, known as those born in the years ranging from the early 1980s to the early 2000s, now make up only 6.6 percent of the federal workforce, down from 9.1 percent in 2010.

VA's backlog of disability claims falls to lowest point in history, top official says

VA Under Secretary for Benefits Allison Hickey said the backlog stands at 98,535, representing an 84-percent reduction from the peak of 611,000 claims in March 2013.

Sandia Corp. settles allegations of illegal lobbying claims for nearly $5M

Between 2008 and 2012, Sandia Corp. used federal funds to lobby Congress and other federal officials to receive a non-competitive extension of its contract, which is a violation of the Byrd Amendment, according to DOJ allegations.

Civilian agencies could face nearly $2B in spending cuts due to sequestration, OMB says

Federal civilian agencies will face billions of dollars in spending reductions if Congress doesn't rollback sequestration cuts for fiscal 2016, according to an Aug. 20 Office of Management and Budget report.

HUD gave housing assistance to families who were over the income threshold, IG says

Tens of thousands of families were provided housing assistance despite being over the income threshold, leaving some low-income families out in the cold.

Coordinates of U.S.-funded health clinics in Afghanistan were completely wrong, SIGAR says

The auditor for reconstruction operations in Afghanistan says the coordinates of U.S.-funded health clinics were nowhere near the actual locations of the facilities.

First female soldiers graduate from Army Ranger school, not allowed in elite force

The first two women in history have graduated from the grueling Army Ranger school at Fort Benning in Georgia, though the women won't be allowed to serve in the elite force.

Navy will use solar energy for 14 Navy and Marine installations

The Navy has signed on to have a 210 megawatt solar facility built at its Naval Air Station North Island, California, making it the biggest purchase of renewable energy by federal entity, according to an Aug. 20 Navy statement.

USPTO employee got paid for 730 hours while doing no work, IG says

A Patent and Trademark Office employee racked up 730 hours worth of pay for doing no work and the agency should try to recoup that money, says an Aug. 19 Commerce Department inspector general report.

Sequestration has had a 'noticable' effect on US economy, says Bernanke

Sequestration at the Defense Department hasn't only hurt agencies, it's also been a detriment to the American economy, Former Federal Reserve Chair Ben Bernanke said at an Aug. 18 Brookings Institution event.

Federal contractor accused of faulty background checks settles for $30M

The contractor that the Justice Department says knowingly took shortcuts when investigating individuals seeking security clearances agreed to forgo about $30 million that it says the Office of Personnel Management still owes the company, according to an Aug. 19 DOJ statement.