The National Archives and Records Administration doesn't know where all agencies store their physical records, the Government Accountability Office says. NARA has tried to gather that information, but not all agencies submitted it. The data that NARA has received is mostly from 2008 and 2009 and is now outdated, the GAO says in a report (.pdf) released Sept. 10.
Nearly 80 percent of a 357 million page backlog of classified records has gone through the National Declassification Center's quality assurance review stage, the center announced Aug. 8 in its biannual report. During the quality assurance stage, the NDC works to ensure that still-sensitive information remains classified and that records appropriate for release are declassified.
The nomination of Davita Vance-Cooks to the position of Public Printer will be considered before the full Senate thanks to a unanimous July 24 vote by the Senate Rules and Administration Committee.
The federal government has 64 percent fewer in-house printing plants today than it did in 1990, finds a July 17 Government Accountability Office report (.pdf). The most significant decline comes from the Defense Department, which reported 142 printing plants in 1990 and is now down to 17 managed by the Defense Logistics Agency.
A backlog of more than 300 million pages of the federal government's foreign-relations records awaiting declassification probably won't be processed by the end of the year, as is required, a report from the State Department's Historical Advisory Committee says.
Americans want the Postal Service to stick around, with most interested in continuing to receive physical mail but willing to consider more self-service options, according to a new report (.pdf) by the USPS Office of Inspector General. Young people, in particular, were willing to consider a post office with expanded and digital services, the report says.
The Veterans Affairs Department announced it would mandate overtime for claims processors at its 56 regional offices as a way to reduce the backlog of VA disability claims. The mandate will be implemented through the end of fiscal 2013, a May 15 VA statement said.
One commitment that did not make the cut was ExpertNet, a proposed online community where volunteer experts could give consultations. A single government-wide software platform would face implementation challenges, the report said. Soliciting expert citizen opinions, outside the process of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, is also a culture-change and business process challenge, the report says.
The Veterans Affairs Department has nearly 900,000 pending disability claims, more than 70 percent of which have been pending for more than 125 days, according March 20 testimony before a House Committee. Still, Allison Hickey, under secretary for benefits at VA, said the Veterans Benefits Administration is actually making progress. "VBA employees are completing more compensation claims than ever before in the history of VA," she said.
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.