A Nov. 18 statement of administration policy (.pdf) asks the Senate not to make changes to the security clearance process until the Office of Management and Budget completes its ongoing review. OMB's findings may lead to recommendations that conflict with the Senate Armed Services Committee's proposal.
The revolving account used to finance the Office of Personnel Management's Federal Investigative Service security clearance investigation has never been audited and there is no governmentwide guidance on what constitutes a proper security clearance check, agency officials said in a June 20 Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee on efficiency and effectiveness of federal programs and the federal workforce hearing.
The Justice Department doesn't meet the statutory goal of completing at least 90 percent of its contractor security clearances within 60 days--mostly due to lengthy processing times at the FBI, says the DOJ office of inspector general.
The Navy says it will immediately start taking cost-savings measures, such as layoffs, furloughs and deferred maintenance and deployments, now that sequestration has become law. The service says "these actions are being taken to preserve support for those forces stationed overseas and currently forward-deployed. Reductions in lower-priority forward operations and significant reductions in all other operations, training and maintenance are the results of this selection process."
A lack of clear guidance from the Director of National Intelligence on which civilian positions require secret clearances is responsible for a hodgepodge of inconsistent and improper security determinations across government agencies, according to the Government Accountability Office. DNI "has not provided agencies clearly defined policy and procedures to consistently determine if a position requires a security clearance," GAO says in a July 12 report (.pdf).
Across government, security clearance backlogs have diminished, investigations are more complete and adjudication documentation had improved, but reciprocal acceptance of security clearances is still a challenge, said Gene Dodaro, GAO's comptroller general.
Slightly more than 4.2 million people held security clearances, as of Oct.1, 2010, according to a congressional report from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, made public Sept. 20