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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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OPM Terminates Controversial Background Check Contractor

September 10, 2014 After months of building pressure, the Office of Personnel Management announced it “is not exercising its option next year with USIS,” the controversial contractor that for years had performed the bulk of background checks for federal security clearances. “This determination was made by OPM’s contracting officials following a careful and ...

If There’s a Pandemic, Homeland Security May be Scrambling

September 9, 2014 As the Ebola outbreak in West Africa grows worse, the Homeland Security Department is being faulted for mismanaging its supply of protective equipment and antiviral medical countermeasures, a watchdog found. DHS Inspector General John Roth warned in a report dated Aug. 26 and sent to Deputy Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro ...

Senators May Attach Strings to Federal Surplus Programs for Local Police

September 9, 2014 Invoking images of 20-ton armored vehicles confronting unarmed protestors after last month’s police shooting of a black youth in Missouri, senators on Tuesday quizzed agency officials on tightening oversight of federal programs that transfer surplus equipment to local law enforcement and provide anti-crime grants under post 9/11 calculations. The result, ...

HHS Chief Gets Behind One Cause Everyone Can Believe In

September 9, 2014 Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell won't have an easy time making friends on the other side of the political aisle. But on Monday, she did take up one cause that could well be bipartisan. "I’ve learned to have respect for every sector of our society and to ...

Around Government

September 9, 2014 Bravery in the Bureaucracy Making the right decision isn’t the hard part, agency leaders say, it’s having the guts to follow through. By Charles S. Clark Newscaster Dan Rather was famous in the 1980s for signing off the evening news with a simple word: courage. He may have been onto ...

From War to Work

September 9, 2014 In 2011, Lauren Augustine was an Army specialist operating RQ-7B Shadow unmanned aerial vehicles from Camp Taji in Iraq. She knew that at the end of her deployment, the skills she’d learned wouldn’t translate directly to civilian employment. Enter the revamped Transition Assistance Program, designed to ease service members’ transition ...

Controversial Background Check Contractor Tries to 'Set the Record Straight'

September 8, 2014 The Falls Church, Va.-based contractor performing the largest share of background checks for federal security clearances has issued a point-by-point rebuttal of recent criticisms from lawmakers and others who believe the firm’s ethics troubles should bar it from continued government work. “USIS is a responsible federal contractor,” reads the statement ...

Finally, Some Good News for Federal Recruiters

September 8, 2014 Last October’s government shutdown damaged the image of politicians more than federal workers, and the public largely views joining the civil service as a good career choice, a poll released Monday shows. Some 73 percent of respondents to the poll by The George Washington University expressed either “a lot” or ...

Senate Panel Faults 'Bias' of IRS Watchdog

September 5, 2014 This story has been updated. Fifteen months after the controversy erupted over political bias at the Internal Revenue Service, a Senate panel has released a lengthy report challenging the premise of the inspector general’s audit that triggered the ongoing dispute. The original probe of the mishandling of applications by nonprofits ...

The Pentagon Is $200 Billion Short of What It 'Needs' for FY15, Study Shows

September 4, 2014 Despite some loosening of spending caps in the past year, Pentagon budget planners need to present Congress with some stark choices, an experienced specialist said on Thursday in releasing a new analysis of President Obama’s fiscal 2015 defense budget. “We’re at a fork in the road,” said Todd Harrison, senior ...