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Kimberly Palmer

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OMB orders agencies to strengthen internal controls

January 11, 2005 The Office of Management and Budget has released new auditing rules that require agencies to review their internal controls over financial management, fix potential shortcomings and submit an annual report on their activities. In the wake of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which calls for publicly held companies to obtain audits...

OMB to report that job contests saved $1.25 billion last year

January 10, 2005 The Office of Management and Budget is set to report that savings from job competitions between federal employees and private workers grew to about $1.25 billion in 2004 from $1.1 billion in 2003, according to people who have seen figures provided by the agency. Those figures represent the projected savings...

Agencies order contractors to tell workers they don't have to join unions

January 7, 2005 The Defense Department, General Services Administration and NASA have issued an interim rule calling for government contractors to post notices telling employees that they are not required to join unions - a rule that has existed in various forms since the administration of the first President Bush, but one that...

CFO Council launches Web site to track agencies’ finances

January 5, 2005 The Chief Financial Officers Council, a group of federal financial officers, recently launched a Web site that posts information usually found buried in file cabinets. The Web site lists agencies' fund balances in the general Treasury fund, timeliness of invoice payments and credit card delinquency rates, among other measures. The...

Under stress, unions hook new members

January 4, 2005 Carl Goldman didn't bother to sugarcoat his message. He told 30 federal employees at a recent meeting that he wasn't going to be able to do a good job representing them if more of them didn't join the union. Only four were members of the American Federation of State, County...

Agencies should shift to online auctions, scholar says

January 3, 2005 Sellers ranging from large corporations to an ex-husband with a used wedding dress have made fortunes on eBay - but the federal government has been less successful with online auction tools. While the government has long sold unwanted goods - such as property seized from criminals - at physical auctions,...

Homeland Security urged to audit use of special procurement rules

December 22, 2004 The Homeland Security Department should be a little more careful in using special acquisition rules, the Government Accountability Office has concluded. DHS has the authority to use exemptions from standard procurement rules to acquire high-tech products, such as mobile laboratories to analyze dangerous chemicals and systems to defend commercial airplanes...

Rule allows agency officials, not employees, to protest A-76 decisions

December 21, 2004 The Government Accountability Office, the agency in charge of resolving disputes over public-private job competitions, proposed a rule Monday that would allow an official acting on behalf of federal workers to protest decisions in such competitions. The proposed rule implements changes outlined in the fiscal 2005 Defense authorization act, signed...

Job competitions need help from HR, report says

December 20, 2004 Human resources executives could do a lot more to help agencies hold successful public-private job competitions, according to a new report from an Arlington, Va.-based consulting firm. Personnel experts are largely left out of agencies' efforts to hold contests for jobs between federal workers and the private sector, the report...

Government's record of failed financial audits remains unbroken

December 17, 2004 For the eighth year in a row-indeed, ever since audits were required-the government has failed its annual financial statement review. When the Treasury Department publicly released the government's financial statements along with the Government Accountability Office's report on them, few were surprised at the poor results: problems with internal controls,...

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