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.
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.
For the first time since 1993, the D.C. statehood movement had their say on Capitol Hill with a hearing before a Senate committee Monday. Speaking to a half empty hearing room on a statehood bill (S.132), advocates laid out arguments for why the District should be granted the same rights a state.
The House Tuesday passed a bill that would make it easier to discipline or fire poorly performing senior executives governmentwide. The bill (H.R. 5169) would expand the criteria for firing Senior Executive Service employees and allow agencies to suspend them for up to 14 days without pay.
The Environmental Protection Agency does not apply sustainability tools to its decision making in the same way it emphasizes approaches such as exposure assessment, risk analysis and environmental-footprint analysis, or social and economic tools, says the National Research Council.
Agencies aren't doing enough to make clear the importance of new proposed rules during the rulemaking process, a Sept. 11 Government Accountability Office report says. GAO's review found that for the majority of the 109 significant rules reviewed, the rulemaking process is not as transparent as it could be.
About 75 percent of Veterans Affairs Department medical facilities being investigated by the VA inspector general manipulated data related to patient wait times, VA Acting IG Richard Griffin told a Senate panel Tuesday. Griffin said about a quarter of the facilities under investigation have been cleared, but that the rest of the facilities manipulated data in some way.
The head of the Veterans Affairs Department is worried the recent charges of improper scheduling and patient care will make it more difficult to employ and retain top talent. "I am worried about our ability to recruit and retain talented people," VA Secretary Robert McDonald said in a Sept. 8 press conference. "We need tens of thousands of new doctors, new nurses, new clinicians."
Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee leaders say Postal Service facility closures should begin and cautioned against implementing a moratorium, holding up the process, a Sept. 8 committee letter to the Senate Appropriations Committee says. The Postal Service plans move ahead with its consolidation of processing facilities--after the second phase of the project was postponed earlier this year--despite postal unions and some lawmakers coming out against the plan.
A former Postal Service station manager pleaded guilty to receiving bribes for USPS contracts, a Sept. 5 Justice Department statement says. Richard Lewis Wright was connected with a scheme to obtain Postal Service contracts in exchange for bribe payments, the statement says.