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Amanda Palleschi

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Pay and Benefits Bills: Where Do They Stand?

March 15, 2012 With the Senate’s passage of its $109 billion transportation package Wednesday, federal workers await the House’s take on the bill. They dodged a bullet when the Senate rejected an amendment extending the pay freeze. But they are not out of the woods yet. One version of the bill the House ...

Feds one step closer to an option for easing into retirement

March 14, 2012 The Senate on Wednesday passed an overhaul of highway and transportation programs that includes language allowing retirement-eligible federal employees to work part time to help pay for other government programs. The chamber passed the $109 billion highway bill by a vote of 74-22, putting the ball in the House’s court. ...

Senate rejects pay freeze extension for federal workers

March 13, 2012 The Senate on Tuesday voted down a measure that would have extended the federal pay freeze to help fund a sweeping piece of transportation legislation, including approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. The amendment to the Senate’s Surface Transportation Bill failed 41-57. The Senate voted on many amendments to the ...

Senate gears up for vote on pay freeze extension

March 12, 2012 The Senate is slated to vote on a $109 billion surface transportation bill Tuesday that could include a proposal to extend the federal pay freeze to help fund tax relief and controversial energy provisions, including gas exploration and the Keystone XL Pipeline. The amendment, introduced last week by Sen. Pat ...

Pay freeze extension on the table again

March 9, 2012 A proposed amendment to the Senate highway bill would extend the pay freeze for federal employees and lawmakers in order to offset the costs of the measure’s tax relief and energy provisions, including oil and gas exploration. The amendment, introduced by Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., represents another twist in ongoing ...

Defense doesn’t need Congress’ blessing to close bases

March 9, 2012 If Congress fails to approve the Obama administration’s request for a second round of military base closures, then the Pentagon will close them through a process more detrimental to local communities, Defense Department officials told House lawmakers this week. The warning came in response to widespread criticism of the administration’s ...

Senate approves retirement-work hybrid for feds

March 8, 2012 The Senate passed an amendment Thursday that allows retirement-eligible federal employees to work part time -- a move designed to offset costs of economic development aid in rural counties nationwide. The measure, proposed by Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., passed the Senate by an 82-16 vote. It was put forward just ...

TRICARE Reshuffle

March 8, 2012 The Defense Department recently announced plans to streamline the agency that manages its military health benefit program, creating a new Defense Health Agency. According to Nextgov’s Bob Brewin, the new agency will assume responsibility for common clinical and business processes across the Military Health System, such as medical education for ...

Postal Service puts some closures on hold during elections

March 7, 2012 The U.S. Postal Service will suspend closures of some processing facilities and post offices to address concerns from state officials that the absentee and mail-in voting process could be disrupted during the November elections, according to The Washington Post. The Postal Service announced last month that it would begin the ...

Feds aren’t alone in pension pain

March 6, 2012 It’s not only federal employees’ contributions to their pension plans that are under fire. According to a new Government Accountability Office report, state and local government pension plans -- which cover more than 27 million employees and beneficiaries -- face the same concerns about long-term sustainability and costs. Half the ...