If request is granted, 100 workers poised to enter the National Security Personnel System Sunday could get a deferment.
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Employees urge independence from DHS, and try to concentrate on preparing for the upcoming hurricane season.
Industry study says unnecessary brand specifications are common, costly.
Before outsourcing systems, agencies would need to hold modified versions of public-private job contests.
Panel working to advance bill that would leave the agency in DHS but expand its powers.
The program continues to perform and major funding cuts would cause delays, secretary says.
Lawmakers are renewing efforts to grant federal employees six weeks of paid parental leave.