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Kellie Lunney

Senior Correspondent Kellie Lunney covers federal pay and benefits issues, the budget process and financial management. After starting her career in journalism at Government Executive in 2000, she returned in 2008 after four years at sister publication National Journal writing profiles of influential Washingtonians. In 2006, she received a fellowship at the Ohio State University through the Kiplinger Public Affairs in Journalism program, where she worked on a project that looked at rebuilding affordable housing in Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina. She has appeared on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, NPR and Feature Story News, where she participated in a weekly radio roundtable on the 2008 presidential campaign. In the late 1990s, she worked at the Housing and Urban Development Department as a career employee. She is a graduate of Colgate University.
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Military Families Are More Worried Than Ever About the Effects of Budget Cuts

August 27, 2014 Downsizing within the Defense Department and the long-term impacts of sequestration are creating anxiety about job security among military service members and their families, according to a new survey. Forty-six percent of middle-class military families (those in pay grades E-6 and above with annual household incomes of at least $50,000) ...

Military Bonuses Affected Despite Sequestration’s Hiatus

August 27, 2014 Sequestration is on hiatus, but that doesn’t mean federal employees and military members still aren’t feeling its effects on their pay while the automatic spending cuts hibernate. Case in point: Some Marines reporting for special duty assignments after Oct. 1 will receive less bonus pay than in previous years because ...

COLA Boost is Hovering Around 1.8 Percent Now

August 26, 2014 Federal and military retirees might have noticed a slight dip in 2015 cost-of-living adjustment calculations, based on the latest data from the Labor Department. The exact cost-of-living adjustment for next year won’t be known until October when all the numbers are in, but plugging into the formula the latest available ...

Is This the Right Time for the White House to Promote Working from Home?

August 25, 2014 Agencies should not create “arbitrary and unnecessary barriers” to telework or other work flexibilities available to federal employees, according to new guidance from the Office of Personnel Management. The government should be “doing its best” to offer such benefits to the workforce, although OPM emphasized that employee requests for workplace ...

Travel Per Diems Aren’t Changing in Fiscal 2015

August 15, 2014 Government travel per diem rates will not change in fiscal 2015, according to the General Services Administration. “The standard lodging per diem rate will remain at $83,” according to a notice published in Friday’s Federal Register. “The meals and incidental expense tiers also remain unchanged for fiscal 2014 and range ...

Civilians in Iraq to Get Higher Premium Pay

August 13, 2014 Civilian federal employees working on stabilization efforts in Iraq are eligible to receive higher premium pay through the end of 2014, according to new guidance from the Office of Personnel Management. The July 22 memorandum from OPM Director Katherine Archuleta -- released after a May directive from President Obama extended ...

Civilians in Iraq To Get Higher Premium Pay

August 13, 2014 Civilian federal employees working on stabilization efforts in Iraq are eligible to receive higher premium pay through the end of 2014, according to new guidance from the Office of Personnel Management. The July 22 memorandum from OPM Director Katherine Archuleta -- released after a May directive from President Obama extended ...

How Phased Retirement Affects Your TSP

August 13, 2014 As feds gear up for Nov. 6 – the date retirement-eligible employees can begin submitting their applications for phased retirement – we will to try to periodically address your questions and inform you about how it will affect your pay and benefits. In that spirit, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment ...

Not Everyone Is Eligible for Phased Retirement

August 12, 2014 Most of the retirement-eligible federal workforce can begin applying for phased retirement in the fall, but a few groups won’t be able to take advantage of the new tool, according to the rules. Those covered under the Civil Service Retirement System and the Federal Employees Retirement System can apply for ...

Homeland Security Staff in Border Facilities Getting Sick on the Job

August 8, 2014 Homeland Security employees working at detention centers on the U.S. Southern border housing unaccompanied children from Central America have been exposed to disease on the job and become sick, according to a new report from the department’s watchdog. Customs and Border Protection staff at some Texas facilities reported contracting scabies, ...