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Survey: Pay and benefits remain an issue for military families

October 12, 2010 Pay and benefits, deployments and their effects on children weigh heavily on the minds of military families, according to a new survey. Eighteen percent of respondents to a May 2010 online survey by the nonprofit Blue Star Families reported pay and benefits as their chief concern, and 41 percent of...

Unions to managers: Give employees a bigger voice in decisions

October 6, 2010 Agency managers are not doing enough to engage employees or their union representatives ahead of time in decisions that affect their daily work, members of the National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations said on Wednesday. The process of gathering employee input -- called pre-decisional involvement -- needs a jump-start, said...

Supreme Court will weigh in on NASA contractor dispute

September 30, 2010 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The Supreme Court on Tuesday will hear arguments from NASA contractors who claim the government has violated their privacy with intrusive background checks. The case involves 28 California Institute of Technology scientists, under contract with NASA at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Calif. On Thursday, Virginia Keeny, attorney for...

Supreme Court will weigh in on NASA contractor dispute

September 30, 2010 The Supreme Court on Tuesday will hear arguments from NASA contractors who claim the government has violated their privacy with intrusive background checks. The case involves 28 California Institute of Technology scientists, under contract with NASA at the Jet Propulsion Lab in Pasadena, Calif. On Thursday, Virginia Keeny, attorney for...

Bill seeks to resolve errors at Arlington

September 29, 2010 Senators have unveiled a bipartisan bill aimed at helping Arlington National Cemetery's leaders identify and resolve gravesite errors, and implement a new organizational structure. The legislation (S. 3860), introduced on Tuesday by Sens. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., and Scott Brown, R-Mass., comes in response to two June Army inspector general reports...

Lawmakers' message loud and clear on jargon

September 28, 2010 The Senate on Monday passed legislation requiring the federal government to use clear language in public documents and to eliminate confusing jargon. Sens. Daniel Akaka, D-Hawaii, and George Voinovich, R-Ohio, sponsored the 2010 Plain Writing Act. The Plain Writing Act would give federal agencies one year to implement the use...

Tender loving care for new hires pays off, authors say

September 23, 2010 Giving new hires guidance and resources to succeed in their jobs could save federal agencies time and money, according to the authors of a new book. An effective strategy for onboarding employees includes immersing neophytes in the culture of the new workplace and helping them hit the ground running with...

Labor-management council considers tackling telework

September 20, 2010 The National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations is considering wading into the issue of telework. During a monthly meeting on Monday, council co-chairman John Berry, director of the Office of Personnel Management, gave members 10 days to volunteer for a working group on the alternative work arrangement. If the topic...

Former DEA chiefs urge attorney general to just say no

September 17, 2010 Nine former Drug Enforcement Administration chief has asked Attorney General Eric Holder to publicly oppose a controversial ballot initiative in California that would legalize the production, possession and sale of marijuana in that state. In an Aug. 24 letter to Holder, the former Republican and Democratic DEA administrators, dating back...

Senators demand a better plan for nuclear detection

September 15, 2010 Senators on Wednesday blasted a nuclear detection unit for failing to develop a strategic plan, and asked officials to produce one as soon as possible. The Homeland Security Department has spent nearly $4 billion on aspects of a system to find illicit radiological and nuclear materials, but has yet to...

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