Author Archive

Carten Cordell

Carten Cordell

Managing Editor, Government Executive

Carten Cordell is the managing editor at Government Executive. Cordell has covered federal government, technology and acquisition for Federal Times, FedScoop, Washington Business Journal and Nextgov/FCW. An Alabama native, Cordell holds bachelor’s degrees in history and journalism from Auburn University and a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. His work has also appeared in USA Today, Writer's Digest and many other publications. He came to GovExec after a stint at Sage Communications, a marketing services agency that focuses on the government contracting market.
Carten Cordell is the managing editor at Government Executive. Cordell has covered federal government, technology and acquisition for Federal Times, FedScoop, Washington Business Journal and Nextgov/FCW. An Alabama native, Cordell holds bachelor’s degrees in history and journalism from Auburn University and a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism. His work has also appeared in USA Today, Writer's Digest and many other publications. He came to GovExec after a stint at Sage Communications, a marketing services agency that focuses on the government contracting market.
Oversight

Senator wants USPS to address veteran medication delays

Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Jon Tester, D-Mt., wants answers from the Postmaster General about ongoing issues veterans have had receiving VA-prescribed medications by mail.

Management

Some DHS agencies are more likely to discipline employees than supervisors, GAO says

The watchdog said data gaps in the disciplinary adjudication process at four Homeland Security component agencies meant that they were unable to identify why rank-and-file employees were more likely than supervisors to face misconduct judgments.

Oversight

VA secretary says he ‘failed’ in recognizing office harassment allegations

Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough candidly admitted fault during a House committee hearing for not discerning more quickly whistleblower complaints of sexual harassment within a department office.

Pay & Benefits

10 years on, OPM keeps its pay freeze in place for senior officials

With budget negotiations ongoing, OPM officials said that the pay rates for the vice president and other senior political officials will remain frozen until at least the expiration of the latest continuing resolution.

Management

VA lacks the emergency budget modeling to prepare for health crises like COVID, GAO says

The watchdog said that the Veterans Health Administration does not have the modeling capability to predict how much supplemental funding would be needed to address a black swan event like the pandemic.

Management

OPM’s talent acquisition system needs better processes for managing agencies’ data

A GAO report found that OPM’s USA Staffing program lacked procedures for managing the interagency agreement data used when agencies utilized its talent acquisition system. 

Pay & Benefits

Some Coast Guard personnel can’t find housing in vacation-rich areas, GAO says

The watchdog said that despite some government housing and a private sector housing allowance, some Coast Guard personnel can’t find affordable lodging stationed in either remote areas or ones where rentals are positioned for vacation economies. 

Pay & Benefits

Secret Service overtime pay locked in through 2028

The House passed legislation Monday to extend overtime pay authority for agents providing protective services through the next presidential election cycle after it was slated to lapse last month. 

Pay & Benefits

OPM: Federal salaries won't be tied to private sector pay histories

Agencies can’t use non-federal salaries to help set pay for new or returning federal employees, under a new rule from the Office of Personnel Management. 

Oversight

House Democrats pen fiery letter to embattled DHS inspector general demanding documents

The ranking members of the House Committees on Oversight and Accountability and Homeland Security demanded documents from the DHS IG related to a court settlement with a former deputy inspector general after repeated requests remained unfulfilled. 

Management

Want to modernize the federal workforce? Here's how

A new nonprofit study examines how the federal government could update the civil service to both capture new talent and capitalize on its available talent. 

Pay & Benefits

Is the 5.2% pay raise enough for feds? Union says no

While the president authorized the largest pay raise for federal employees in more than 40 years last month, the National Federation of Federal Employees said inflation and the outpacing private sector pay means workers need more. 

Management

Senate bill would offer veterans with lost medical records a way to access disability benefits

Legislation from the Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee chairman would provide veterans with other documentation methods for receiving benefits when their medical records are misplaced between the VA and Defense Department. 

Management

OPM and the Pentagon are among agencies adopting solar under a $104M clean energy plan

The Biden administration detailed new grant awards from an Energy Department program tasked with helping implement energy conservation technology at federal agencies. 

Management

Senate committee wants details on VA’s harassment investigation

On the heels of a House panel voting to subpoena the Veterans Affairs Department as part of its own investigation, the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee wants more information about how officials are examining sexual harassment allegations. 

Management

Intelligence agencies need to make SCIFs more accessible for employees with disabilities, GAO says

The watchdog examined the facilities agencies use for processing classified information, finding that some barriers that prohibit access remain.

Pay & Benefits

A new rule allows the VA to adjust disability compensation to prevent overpayments

The rule, set to go into effect on Jan. 11, would allow the department to suspend or pause disability compensation for Defense Department servicemembers also receiving active service pay. 

Management

How successful are President’s Management Agendas? 

The White House touted the recent gains it made in workforce and customer experience goals in the latest update to the governmentwide management plan, but the tangible effects of PMAs often tend to be more gradual. 

Workforce

5 places where the White House prioritized 2023 hiring 

To meet the increasing demand for government services and operational needs, the Biden administration targeted hiring surges at several agencies in 2023.

Oversight

Senate committee wants VA to ensure providers work to prevent opioid abuse

Sen. Angus King, I-Maine, and other Senate Veterans Affairs Committee members sent a letter to VA Secretary Denis McDonough calling for action after audits found oversight lapses in opioid prescriptions from non-agency providers.