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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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Most VA Senior Execs Rated Above Average on Performance Evaluations

June 20, 2014 Nearly 80 percent of senior executives at the Veterans Affairs Department received above average ratings on their performance evaluations in fiscal 2013, making them eligible for bonuses, according to VA data. None of the 470 senior executives at the department received a rating of “less than fully successful” on their ...

House Approves 1.8 Percent Military Pay Raise

June 20, 2014 The House on Friday approved a 1.8 percent pay boost for military service members next year. The final vote tally was 340 to 73. The pay provision is part of the massive fiscal 2015 Defense spending bill, which includes a total of $128.1 billion for military pay and personnel. “This ...

Senators: Social Security Isn't Going About Closing Field Offices the Right Way

June 19, 2014 The Social Security Administration, which has shuttered dozens of field offices across the country to save money over the last few years, has not sufficiently examined or justified the rationale behind those decisions, according to a new report from a Senate panel. The agency doesn’t involve local communities in the ...

COLA On Track to Be Bigger in 2015

June 18, 2014 Federal and military retirees are on track to receive the largest cost-of-living adjustment that they’ve seen in a few years. The exact cost-of-living adjustment for 2015 won’t be known until October when all the numbers are in, but plugging into the formula the latest available data results in a 1.7 ...

Appeals Process for TRICARE Claims is Fair, But Long

June 16, 2014 The agency that runs the Defense Department’s massive health care system rarely has overturned the decisions of independent rulings on appeals from TRICARE beneficiaries during the last five fiscal years, according to a new report. There’s no evidence that the head of the Defense Health Agency “summarily overturned hearing officers’ ...

New Bill Would Give Civilians in Combat Zones a Tax Break

June 13, 2014 Civilian federal employees serving in combat zones would receive the same tax credit available to military personnel who work alongside them, under a new bipartisan bill. The Combat Zone Tax Parity Act (H.R. 4621) aims to address a shortage of civilian workers staffing dangerous regions by extending a federal income ...

Bill Would Give Civilian Employees in Combat Zones Tax Break

June 13, 2014 Civilian federal employees serving in combat zones would receive the same tax credit available to military personnel who work alongside them, under a new bipartisan bill. The Combat Zone Tax Parity Act (H.R. 4621) aims to address a shortage of civilian workers staffing dangerous regions by extending a federal income ...

Uncle Sam Doesn’t Really Know How Many Political Vacancies Agencies Have

June 12, 2014 The government doesn’t have a good system for keeping track of vacancies in top agency jobs, and Congress is largely to blame for that, according to a new report from a Washington think tank. The Office of Personnel Management and Government Accountability Office maintain “limited” data on political appointments below ...

Retirement Claims Backlog Could Be Eliminated by Year’s End

June 11, 2014 The Office of Personnel Management continued to chip away at the retirement claims backlog last month, decreasing it by 12 percent between April and May, and processing more applications than expected. The backlog at the end of May was 14,551 claims -- the lowest it has been since December 2013, ...

Agencies Will Start Hearing What Their Employees Really Think This Summer

June 10, 2014 Agencies will receive the latest feedback on employee morale and job satisfaction beginning in August, Obama administration officials said on Tuesday. The federal workforce now is filling out the annual Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, a tool that assesses how employees feel about compensation, management and their jobs. Managers are “very ...