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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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OPM Reminds Employees to Use or Lose Annual Leave

December 3, 2013 If government offices are quieter than usual this month, it’s because federal workers are racing to use their excess annual leave before the end of the current leave year. The Office of Personnel Management has issued a reminder to employees and supervisors that they need to use or lose any ...

Mass Transit Benefit Will Drop In 2014

November 27, 2013 The mass transit tax benefit used by thousands of federal employees will drop significantly in 2014, while the maximum parking benefit will increase by $5. Beginning on Jan. 1, 2014, commuters will be able to use up to $130 in monthly pre-tax dollars to subsidize their mass transit costs -- ...

2014 Military Pay Raise Guaranteed

November 27, 2013 Military personnel still will receive an across-the-board pay raise in 2014 even if Congress can’t approve legislation authorizing one before the end of the year. President Obama has recommended a 1 percent increase in basic pay for military service members next year, which will take effect during the first pay ...

Virginia Senator: Don’t Target Feds in Deficit Reduction Deal

November 25, 2013 A Virginia senator is urging the joint budget conference committee to avoid targeting the compensation of federal employees as part of a deficit reduction deal. Democrat Tim Kaine, who also is a member of the budget panel, said federal workers already have contributed to fiscal belt-tightening through a three-year civilian ...

TSP Officials Worry Feds Who Made Hardship Withdrawals During Shutdown Won’t Return

November 25, 2013 The agency overseeing the Thrift Savings Plan will encourage participants who took hardship withdrawals from their accounts during the government shutdown to start contributing again next spring. Officials from the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board on Monday said they would look into contacting more than 14,000 federal employees who turned ...

Bill Would Give Blue Collar Feds an Across-the-Board Pay Raise, Too

November 22, 2013 Hourly federal employees would receive the same across-the-board pay raise as their salaried colleagues in January under legislation unveiled on Thursday. A bipartisan bill introduced in the House would ensure the 1 percent pay increase General Schedule federal employees are on track to receive next year applies to Wage Grade ...

White House Presses for TRICARE Fee Increases

November 21, 2013 The White House this week urged the Senate to support its effort to increase the amount military retirees pay for their health insurance. The current version of the fiscal 2014 Senate Defense authorization bill does not include President Obama’s proposals to impose higher fees and create new enrollment fees for ...

Budget Office: Next Debt Ceiling D-Day Could Come in March

November 21, 2013 The government will exhaust its emergency borrowing authority sometime between March and June 2014, if Congress does not suspend or increase the nation’s debt limit again, according to a new report. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that Treasury’s wiggle room to avoid breaching the debt ceiling could run out ...

Don’t Worry About Obamacare – Feds’ Health Benefits Are Safe

November 21, 2013 People tend to define financial security by the numbers in their paychecks: Namely, salary, bonuses, and deductions for health care and retirement benefits. Federal employees, many of whom probably scoffed at the mention of bonuses, face uncertainty over pay and pensions right now. It’s looking like they might get their ...

Special Counsel Skeptical DHS Will Confront Overtime Abuses

November 19, 2013 Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner on Tuesday expressed skepticism over Homeland Security’s efforts to address improper use of overtime among employees, a practice that has cost the department millions of dollars over the years. “I took some measure of comfort that they admitted they had a problem, and at least on ...