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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House Appropriators Approve VA Senior Executive Bonus Ban

March 23, 2016 Senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department would not receive bonuses in fiscal 2017 under a major House spending bill approved by an appropriations subcommittee on Wednesday. The fiscal 2017 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations measure now heads to the full House Appropriations Committee, and includes a provision that...

VA Moves to Slash Pay, Suspend Senior Executives

March 23, 2016 The Veterans Affairs Department has recommended suspending one senior executive, and slashing the pay of two others for their roles in the VA’s use of relocation incentives and reassignments of top employees. VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson on Tuesday proposed a 15-day suspension for Danny Pummill, acting undersecretary for benefits,...

Bill Bans Bonuses for VA Senior Executives

March 22, 2016 Senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department would not receive bonuses in fiscal 2017 under a major House spending bill unveiled on Tuesday. A provision in the fiscal 2017 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill prohibits the department from using any funds in the legislation for senior executives’ performance...

Bill Would Grant 12 Weeks of Paid Leave to All Military Parents

March 22, 2016 All service members would receive at least 12 weeks of paid leave to care for a new child under a bill introduced in the House. The Military Parental Leave Modernization Act would ensure that new dads receive 12 weeks of paid paternity leave, equal to the three months that female...

Which Ex-President Cost the Government the Most in Fiscal 2015?

March 21, 2016 Former President George W. Bush cost the government $1.098 million in pension money and other perks in fiscal 2015, racking up the highest tab of the four living ex-commanders-in-chief, according to a new report. The 43rd president received a pension (and related benefits) worth $214,000 in fiscal 2015, the General...

Senate Democrats Want to Triple Obama's Proposed Federal Pay Raise

March 18, 2016 Federal employees would receive an across-the-board pay raise of 5.3 percent next year under a Democratic-sponsored bill introduced in the Senate Wednesday. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, would provide feds with a 3.9 percent boost, plus a 1.4 percent bump in locality pay for 2017. The figure...

Combat Vets Now Can File For VA Health Benefits Over the Phone

March 18, 2016 Combat veterans now can apply for health care at the Veterans Affairs Department by telephone, in addition to the existing paper and online application options. The VA hopes that the new option, which will be available to all veterans starting July 5, will expedite processing of health care applications and...

Government Would Pair Service Dogs and Vets With Severe Post-Traumatic Stress Under Bill

March 17, 2016 Veterans with severe post-traumatic stress would be paired with service dogs paid for by the government to help support them under a new House bill. The Puppies Assisting Wounded Servicemembers (PAWS) Act, introduced by Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., would create a five-year, $10 million pilot program that provides the animals...

VA Backpedals on Changing Status of All Senior Executives

March 15, 2016 The Veterans Affairs Department on Tuesday publicly backed away from pursuing legislation that would move all VA senior executives into a different personnel system, making it easier to hire and fire them. VA Secretary Bob McDonald told a Senate panel that the department wants to “expand the Title 38 hiring...

Most VA Senior Executives Pick Job Security Over Better Pay

March 15, 2016 This story has been updated. Most senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department don’t support moving the corps out of Title 5, even if it means better pay, according to a new survey. Sixty-four percent of respondents to a survey by the Senior Executives Association said they don’t agree with...

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