AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Eric Katz

Staff Correspondent Eric Katz joined Government Executive in the summer of 2012 after graduating from The George Washington University, where he studied journalism and political science. He has written for his college newspaper and an online political news website and worked in a public affairs office for the Navy’s Military Sealift Command. Most recently, he worked for Financial Times, where he reported on national politics.
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Some Agencies' Shutdown Furlough Plans Have Changed Dramatically in Past 2 Years

December 9, 2015 As Congress attempts to reach an 11th hour deal to avoid a government shutdown, federal agencies are dusting off their contingency plans and readying for the scenario in which Congress fails to act. Luckily for them and their cleaning service contract budgets, little dust should have accumulated, as every federal...

No, 72 DHS Employees Are Not on a Terrorism Watch List

December 8, 2015 When a member of Congress refers to federal employees as terrorists, it’s bound to turn some heads. That was exactly what happened when Rep. Stephen Lynch, D-Mass., told a radio station in Boston last week that 72 employees at the Homeland Security Department were on a terror watch list. The...

The USPS Governing Board Now Has Just One Confirmed Member

December 8, 2015 As the U.S. Postal Service gears up for its busiest time of the year, Congress has delivered a significant blow to its top leadership. The Postal Service is, by statute, supposed to have nine governors on its board to make major decisions for the agency. It currently has just one....

Republican Senators Want to Expand VA Firing Authority to the IRS

December 7, 2015 Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., the author of a 2014 law easing the firing of senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department, has said he hoped his measure would serve as a “template” for the rest of government. After Republicans in Congress tried and failed last year to expand the increased...

Congress Backs Crackdown on $125B in Improper Payments to the Dead, Others

December 7, 2015 Agencies will soon have more resources to ensure they do not dole out improper payments to beneficiaries of federal programs, including the deceased, with Congress approving a bill on Monday to boost coordination to prevent errors. The House unanimously passed the Improper Payments Coordination Act, which will now head to...

With Deadline Days Away, TSA-Union Contract Negotiations at a Standstill

December 4, 2015 The contract between the Transportation Security Administration and the union representing its workforce is set to expire next week, and with the deadline just days away, the two sides appear to be gridlocked. If the American Federation of Government Employees, which represents TSA workers, and the agency do not reach...

How Plummeting Morale and Inept Leadership Has Created a ‘Crisis’ at Secret Service

December 3, 2015 Things at the Secret Service are bad and are going to get worse, according to a bipartisan congressional report released Thursday, with overstretched employees increasingly losing faith in the agency and those who lead it. After a series of agency scandals in recent years and subsequent hearings, the House Oversight...

Postal Reform Bill Earns Bipartisan Support in Congress

December 2, 2015 The latest push to overhaul the U.S. Postal Service appears to be gaining momentum, as lawmakers from both parties have thrown their support behind a recently introduced legislative reform measure. Two Republicans, Sens. Jerry Moran, Kan., and Roy Blunt, Mo., have signed on as cosponsors on the 2015 Improving Postal...

Lawmakers Push for 3.9 Percent ‘Emergency’ COLA in 2016

December 2, 2015 Retired federal employees should receive at least as much of a raise next year as private sector CEOs, according a bicameral group of Democratic lawmakers, which has proposed providing an “emergency payment” to make up for the lack of a cost-of-living adjustment in 2016. Rep. Tammy Duckworth, D-Ill., introduced on...

Agencies Spent $80M in 2014 Forcing Employees Not to Work

December 1, 2015 A sample of 18 federal agencies spent more than $80 million last year for some employees to not work for at least one month, according to a new report, and one lawmaker has vowed to finally reform the process legislatively. Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, released a report more than one...

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