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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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Civilians Working in Overseas Hot Spots Eligible for Higher Premium Pay in 2016

February 19, 2016 Some civilian employees working overseas in certain countries in the Middle East and Africa are eligible to receive higher premium pay through the end of 2016, according to new guidance from the Office of Personnel Management. Government employees working abroad in support of a military operation or in response to...

Military’s Paid Maternity Leave Now 12 Weeks; Feds Still At Zero

February 18, 2016 When it comes to pay and benefits, there are many differences between military service members and the federal civilian workforce. Defense Secretary Ash Carter just reminded everyone of a big one: paid maternity leave. Carter recently announced that the Defense Department would give female service members 12 weeks of paid...

TSP Weighs Its Supermodel Retirement Status, and More

February 17, 2016 The board that runs the Thrift Savings Plan, the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement program, is anxiously eyeing a new bill that uses the TSP as a model for a national retirement savings plan for millions of American workers. The legislation, sponsored by Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., would give workers without...

MSPB Agrees That VA Senior Executive Screwed Up, But Not Enough to Fire Her

February 16, 2016 This story has been updated. An administrative judge said on Tuesday that he reversed the firing of a Veterans Affairs senior executive because the department failed to prove her actions warranted such severe punishment -- and a 2014 law prevented him from imposing a lighter penalty. Chief Administrative Judge Arthur...

Group Blasts VA Proposal to Strip Senior Executives of Appeal Rights

February 12, 2016 This story has been updated. The group representing senior executives in the federal government on Friday called a proposal that would prevent career executives at the Veterans Affairs Department from appealing disciplinary actions before an independent agency “farcical.” The idea, which VA Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson came up with, recommends...

VA Proposes Taking Away Senior Executives’ MSPB Appeal Rights

February 11, 2016 The Veterans Affairs Department is working with Capitol Hill to craft legislation that would prevent fired VA senior executives from appealing those removals to the Merit Systems Protection Board. The proposal, which Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson came up with, recommends making all VA senior executives Title 38 employees, meaning that...

Bonus Bill For Feds Gains Momentum in Senate

February 11, 2016 Bipartisan legislation that would allow agencies to give bonuses of up to $10,000 to federal employees who save the government money is gaining momentum. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee will mark up the Bonuses for Cost-Cutters Act during the panel’s next meeting, said Chairman Ron Johnson, R-Wis.,...

Senate Panel Approves Bill Limiting Administrative Leave

February 10, 2016 A Senate panel on Wednesday approved a bipartisan bill that would strictly limit the ability of federal agencies to put employees on extended paid administrative leave while they are being investigated -- an attempt to crack down on a practice that cost the government $3.1 billion from 2011 through 2013...

Senate Panel Approves OPM Nomination

February 10, 2016 A Senate panel on Wednesday advanced the nomination of Beth Cobert to serve as director of the Office of Personnel Management. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee easily reported out the nomination of Cobert, who has been serving as acting OPM director since Katherine Archuleta resigned last summer...

Military Retirees Would Pay More for TRICARE Under White House Budget Proposal

February 9, 2016 All retired service members would pay an annual TRICARE enrollment fee under a new, simplified version of the military’s main health care program outlined in President Obama’s fiscal 2017 budget. TRICARE would consist of two options under the proposal, instead of the several different choices available to beneficiaries now. Enrollees...