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OPM drops time limit to boost military spouse hiring

August 30, 2011 Husbands and wives of service members disabled or killed in the line of duty soon will have indefinite noncompetitive eligibility for government jobs. In a final rule to be published in Wednesday's Federal Register, the Office of Personnel Management will eliminate a two-year limit on a special hiring authority for ...

Employee incentive payments increase in 2009

August 29, 2011 The federal government paid out more than $349 million in recruitment, relocation and retention incentives in 2009, a 22 percent increase over the previous year, according to new data from the Office of Personnel Management. In a report detailing so-called 3Rs incentives spending, OPM found that 45 federal agencies increased ...

Postal Service pays less for employees to sit around

August 29, 2011 The U.S. Postal Service is paying fewer employees to do nothing than in previous years, but stand-by time still cost the agency $4.3 million in the first half of fiscal 2011, according to a new audit. USPS guarantees work hours for some employees, including clerks represented by the American Postal ...

GSA issues revised per diem reimbursement

August 25, 2011 Federal employees on business travel will see changes in per diem reimbursements starting Oct. 1, according to the General Services Administration. Lodging reimbursement, which can change based on season, will rise $15 in the Washington area to $226 in October 2011 and September 2012. From April to June 2012, the ...

Lawmaker seeks end to congressional retirement benefits

August 25, 2011 A Republican lawmaker wants members of Congress to give up their pension plans. Rep. Mike Coffman, R-Colo., this fall will introduce a bill that would end the defined benefit portion of the congressional retirement plan. Currently, lawmakers who have been in Congress at least five years receive annual benefits equal ...

Earthquake Ease

August 25, 2011 If Tuesday's earthquake rattled more than just buildings up and down the East Coast, not to worry. The Office of Personnel Management has guidance to help federal managers and employees work through the aftermath of a natural disaster. According to OPM, earthquakes, hurricanes and other traumatic events can cause "emotional ...

Earthquake’s aftershock, damages still to come

August 23, 2011 The 5.8 magnitude earthquake that shook the East Coast on Tuesday may cause lasting shaking and millions of dollars in damages, according to scientists at the U.S. Geological Survey. The quake occurred in an area that is seismically active, making it difficult to determine whether Tuesday's shaking was just the ...

Agencies finalize strategies for cutting burdensome regulations

August 23, 2011 More than two dozen federal agencies on Tuesday released final plans to streamline or eliminate regulations, which Obama administration officials said will save $10 billion over five years. The proposals are the result of a January executive order that set off a governmentwide evaluation of outdated or needlessly burdensome regulations. ...

Observers are leery of Postal Service plan to opt out of federal health and retirement programs

August 22, 2011 The U.S. Postal Service's proposed break with federal health and retirement plans would weaken benefits for postal employee and possibly other government workers as well, observers caution. USPS earlier this month announced plans to seek legislative changes that would allow the agency to create its own health and retiree benefits ...

USPS To Scrap Jobs, Federal Benefits

August 11, 2011 The U.S. Postal Service, in an effort to dig itself out of a huge financial hole, is proposing to cut 120,000 jobs and employee access to federal health and retiree benefit programs, according to the Washington Post. USPS, which is facing more than $8 billion in losses before the end ...