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Critic calls OMB program evaluations biased

June 22, 2007 The Bush administration's rating tool for evaluating federal programs is subject to political bias and should be reformed to bring in more subject expertise, according to a former federal employee. In a recent white paper circulated within the federal management community, Eric Bothwell, a 26-year veteran of the Indian Health...

Report finds federal researchers unsure of media rules

June 21, 2007 Many federal researchers are uncertain of agency media policies and whether they can discuss the policy implications of their work, according to a new study that calls on agencies to clarify their guidelines and boost training. In a study of media and publication policies at NASA, the National Oceanic and...

Bill aims to enhance independence of inspectors general

June 20, 2007 Current and former inspectors general on Wednesday supported legislation aimed at strengthening the independence of IGs. The measure (H.R. 928) introduced by Rep. Jim Cooper, D-Tenn., would update the 1978 Inspector General Act and mirrors similar measures presented over the past five years. The latest version comes amid a wave...

OMB claims progress in disposing of unneeded real estate

June 18, 2007 An Air Force fueling complex in Norwalk, Calif., a maintenance shop in Yaounde, Cameroon, and a group of General Services Administration warehouses in Fort Worth, Texas, are among 130 properties prioritized by federal agencies for disposal. In a new listing of excess federal real estate properties called for under a...

House investigators seek Justice probe of NASA general counsel

June 15, 2007 House lawmakers this week requested a criminal investigation into the possibility that NASA General Counsel Michael Wholley destroyed government records and obstructed justice. In a bipartisan letter signed by the chairman and ranking member of the House Science and Technology panel's investigations subcommittee, lawmakers asked the attorney general to investigate...

Group argues for shielding contractors’ revenue, employee counts

June 14, 2007 An association representing federal contractors has requested that key data related to company size be withheld from the public, a measure that watchdog groups say would restrict access to important information. The Professional Services Council, an Arlington, Va., group representing government service contractors, made the request in response to a...

IRS cites lack of resources to review potential fraud cases

June 13, 2007 The Internal Revenue Service is not prepared to handle the heavier workload that would result from aggressively pursuing cases of refund fraud, an agency official said in response to a new audit report. The audit of the IRS Questionable Refund Program by the Treasury inspector general and the response point...

VA official says bonuses needed to retain top executives

June 12, 2007 Lawmakers on Tuesday challenged the Veterans Affairs Department's award of $3.8 million in bonuses to senior executives in fiscal 2006 even as the department's case backlog grew, but a senior official defended the awards as crucial to retaining public servants who would be more richly rewarded in the private sector....

Official says GovWorks can handle loss of Defense business

June 11, 2007 Officials with GovWorks, a fee-funded Interior Department contracting operation, said it can withstand the loss of much of its business in the face of a Defense Department suspension of large purchases. "Can it survive? Yes," said Doug Bourgeois, director of Interior's National Business Center, parent of GovWorks. "The future will...

NASA inspector general rejects allegations, claims independence

June 8, 2007 NASA Inspector General Robert Cobb defended his performance as "uncompromised" during a joint House and Senate hearing Thursday in which lawmakers hammered away at his record of consulting closely with the agency head, restricting the scope of investigations and verbally abusing his staff. Before a House science investigative committee and...

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