AUTHOR ARCHIVES

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 pay raises drove uptick in Pentagon’s personnel spending

November 15, 2012 Generous pay raises for the military, in some years exceeding the growth rate of private sector wages and salaries, are largely responsible for the Pentagon’s ballooning personnel costs, according to a new report. Since 2000, changes in basic military pay have been linked to the Employment Cost Index, which historically...

Will Budget Deal Target Federal Pay and Benefits?

November 15, 2012 Simpson-Bowles is back. The famous (or infamous?) 2010 bipartisan fiscal commission led by former Republican Sen. Alan Simpson from Wyoming and former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles never really went away, but other deficit reduction proposals and super heroes did steal the commission’s limelight for a while. Remember...

Pay reform unlikely anytime soon, says former civil servant

November 14, 2012 Reforms to the federal government’s predominant pay scale are unlikely anytime soon, said a former top career civil servant at the Office of Personnel Management on Wednesday. “I am just very cynical about reaching any compromise,” former OPM senior policy adviser Doris Hausser said of revamping the General Schedule system,...

Groups urge Congress to lower cap on contractor pay

November 13, 2012 Federal employee unions and other groups on Tuesday called on lawmakers to lower the current compensation cap on non-Defense Department contractors to $400,000. The letter to the leadership of the House and Senate Financial Services committees urged lawmakers to change the maximum allowable limit on reimbursable contractor pay from $763,029...

OPM to clarify language on federal closures

November 13, 2012 The government will clarify its language on federal office closures to prevent confusion among employees, according to a report from Federal News Radio. The Office of Personnel Management, which decides the operating status of the government during inclement weather and other emergencies, will attempt to be more straightforward about what’s...

Open season kicks off

November 12, 2012 Open season, the annual period during which federal workers can switch enrollments in health insurance plans, officially began Monday. Federal employees are able to make changes to their health insurance coverage through Dec. 10. Enrollment changes take effect the first pay period in 2013. The Office of Personnel Management in...

Feds can donate leave to Sandy victims

November 9, 2012 Federal employees who want to help fellow workers affected by megastorm Sandy can donate their unused annual leave. President Obama issued a memorandum on Friday asking the Office of Personnel Management to establish an emergency program to facilitate the transfer of leave for employees wishing to make donations. The program...

Cuts in federal pay and benefits are among deficit reduction possibilities

November 9, 2012 Reducing certain pay and benefits for the federal workforce could cut the deficit by $38 billion in 2020, according to a new analysis of the country’s fiscal crisis from the Congressional Budget Office. Lawmakers have a range of options for cutting spending and increasing revenues to rein in the government’s...

FEMA trailers head to Sandy-ravaged communities

November 8, 2012 Federal Emergency Management Agency trailers are heading to East Coast communities hit hard by megastorm Sandy to provide temporary housing for people the disaster left homeless. The agency is deploying the mobile homes, which became ubiquitous on the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, to give people displaced by...

Federal Pensions and the Meaning of Fully Funded

November 8, 2012 With the 2012 presidential election over (finally!), the threat of the so-called fiscal cliff takes center stage. Congress and President Obama, reelected to a second term, will start negotiating in earnest over how to avoid the looming perfect storm of expiring tax cuts, sequestration and the debt ceiling. Any serious...

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