Senate Democrats urge President Bush to make an appointment for the required slot.
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Investigators called upon DHS to make changes over summer, in response to reports of fraudulent use of cards after Hurricane Katrina.
Department also is working to hire more acquisition workers to oversee contracts, officials say in response to GAO report.
Alliant will be worth up to $65 billion over 10 years, but skeptics note flaws in how GSA has handled the effort.
Body will no longer be required to report regularly to the Commerce Department; government will play advisory role.
Language added to Defense authorization bill is aimed at stopping unscrupulous payday lenders from targeting service members.
A new report questions the helpfulness of five-level grading schemes that will be used to decide pay.
New measure is needed to clarify that states can surpass federal standards, and require safer technologies and processes, Democrats say.
House Republican moderates are asking for an additional $3 billion; decision likely to wait until after the elections.