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Charles S. Clark

Senior Correspondent Charlie Clark joined Government Executive in the fall of 2009. He has been on staff at The Washington Post, Congressional Quarterly, National Journal, Time-Life Books, Tax Analysts, the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges, and the National Center on Education and the Economy. He has written or edited online news, daily news stories, long features, wire copy, magazines, books and organizational media strategies.
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A Whistleblower’s Guide for the Trump Era

August 14, 2017 The federal whistleblower community in recent years has seen an array of new laws, headline cases and bipartisan calls from lawmakers for new protections. Whether its members turn out to be misguided attention-seekers or brave souls risking their jobs (and peace of mind) to call out waste, fraud or abuse,...

State Department Confronts North Korea With Rows of Vacant Positions

August 11, 2017 The rising tensions between President Trump and the missile-launching government of North Korea are playing out with a State Department that continues to operate with corridors of unfilled leadership jobs. The Trump White House has made only a third of the nominations needed to fill 130 key jobs at the...

Trump Agency Reforms Are Called the Most Exciting Opportunity in Years

August 9, 2017 Though their written plans remain shrouded from public view, agency officials charged by the Trump White House with making government more efficient say they are “excited” about what they see as a rare opportunity for systemic and lasting change to government operations. Speaking Wednesday in Washington at the “first annual...

Democrats Want to Know How Much Agencies Are Spending at Trump Properties

August 8, 2017 In perhaps their broadest document request yet, Democratic members on the House Oversight and Government Reform panel on Tuesday wrote to all major agencies seeking details on how they might be “spending federal taxpayer funds on products or services provided by businesses owned by or affiliated with the Trump Organization.”...

Former Pentagon Acquisitions Chief Belittles Reorg Plan

August 7, 2017 Just days after the Pentagon delivered a congressionally mandated plan for reorganizing its acquisitions management, the ex-undersecretary whose job the plan would disassemble gave the reform a thumbs-down. Frank Kendall, until January the Obama administration-appointed Defense undersecretary for acquisition, technology and logistics, went on the WJLA “Government Matters” Sunday TV...

Democratic Lawmakers Challenge Secrecy of Trump Deregulation Task Forces

August 7, 2017 The regulatory review task forces set up by agencies under President Trump’s February executive order have secret membership and secret deliberations, according to a letter to the White House from four Democratic House members. The critics drew on an investigation published in July jointly by The New York Times and...

GSA Updates Plan for Improving Employees’ Job Performance as Part of Reorg Strategy

August 4, 2017 While reorganizing to seek the efficiencies demanded by the Trump White House, the General Services Administration updated its internal employee performance improvement plan to focus on “linking individual performance to organizational goals, clarifying performance expectations, and providing appropriate and timely recognition of exceptional performance.” The plan, circulated among employees in...

Interior Watchdog Is Probing Secretary Zinke on Alleged Lobbying Violations

August 4, 2017 The Interior Department’s inspector general confirmed on Thursday that it has launched a probe into whether Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke ran afoul of anti-lobbying laws when he phoned Alaska senators, one of whom voted against bills to repeal and replace Obamacare. In an Aug. 3 letter to Reps. Frank Pallone,...

GSA and FBI Promise Senators New Plan for Headquarters Consolidation

August 3, 2017 Senators from both sides of the aisle on Wednesday challenged hearing witnesses about the General Services Administration’s surprise decision last month to abandon the decade-plus-long effort to find a new Washington headquarters site so the FBI can move out of the decaying J. Edgar Hoover building. They raised questions of...

Ex-GSA Contracting Official Gets Prison Time for Nepotism

August 3, 2017 The director of a central contracting office at the General Services Administration has been sentenced to one year in prison for a nepotism conspiracy, while her husband received 18 months, the Justice Department announced. Helen Renee Ballard, 52, and Robert “Steve” Ballard, 56, both of Brandywine, Md., pleaded guilty last...