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Eric Katz

Senior Correspondent Eric Katz writes about federal agency operations and management. His deep coverage of Veterans Affairs, Homeland Security, the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Postal Service has earned him frequent guest spots on national radio and television news programs. Eric joined Government Executive in the summer of 2012 and previously worked for The Financial Times. He is a graduate of The George Washington University.
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TSP Board Needs to ‘Get A Lot Smarter’

June 24, 2013 Officials charged with overseeing the Thrift Savings Plan have pitched an initiative to conduct extensive research into improving the relationship between TSP and its participants and beneficiaries. The proposal -- put forth by the executive director’s office at a Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board meeting Monday -- would serve as...

Congressman Would Fire Feds Who Don’t Answer His Questions

June 21, 2013 Think twice before pleading the Fifth. So says Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., who has introduced a bill that would fire any federal employee who refuses to answer questions or gives false testimony at a congressional hearing. Brooks wrote the legislation after Lois Lerner, director of the tax-exempt organizations division of...

Lawmakers Want More Oversight of Security Clearances

June 20, 2013 A bipartisan chorus of lawmakers criticized the federal government’s lack of standards and oversight of government-issued security clearances at a hearing held Thursday in light of Edward Snowden’s leak of sensitive information. The hearing -- held jointly by Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittees on the federal workforce and...

USPS to Close Three Capitol Hill Post Offices

June 20, 2013 The U.S. Postal Service will close three post offices on the House side of Capitol Hill, the agency has announced. The post offices -- located in the Rayburn and Cannon office buildings, as well as the Capitol building -- were first identified for closures for “extremely low usage” in 2011....

Looking Out for Military Families

June 20, 2013 The Defense Department could be doing more to protect members of the military. The issue is not stronger tanks or better armor, but an entirely different type of security. The Pentagon is seeking to protect members of the armed forces from predatory loans. While a 2007 law was initially effective...

USPS and Cuba in Talks to Resume Direct Mail Service

June 18, 2013 United States and Cuban officials have begun talks to resume mail service between the countries, the U.S. Postal Service has confirmed. USPS and the State Department were scheduled to meet with Cuban diplomats Tuesday and Wednesday in Washington to create a mail exchange for the first time in 50 years....

Lawmakers Hope to Save Overnight Mail Delivery

June 17, 2013 A bipartisan group of lawmakers plan to introduce a bill to preserve overnight delivery at the U.S. Postal Service. The Protect Overnight Delivery Act -- authored by Rep. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn. -- aims to save overnight delivery by limiting the closure of mail processing facilities, according to a letter DeLauro’s...

Bedbugs Infest Homeland Security Office in Vermont

June 17, 2013 A Homeland Security Department building in Vermont has been infested with bed bugs for the third time in as many months, according to a local news report. Exterminators brought a bedbug-sniffing dog to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in St. Albans and some chairs and filing cabinets were...

Bill Would Reverse Green Initiatives for New Federal Buildings

June 14, 2013 A bipartisan group of lawmakers has introduced a bill to repeal a law requiring federal buildings to use less fossil fuel generated energy, saying the provision is detrimental to the coal industry. The legislation -- sponsored by Reps. Ed Whitfield, R-Ky.; Nick Rahall, D-W.Va.; Dave McKinley, R-W.Va.; and William Enyart,...

Postal Service Settles Discrimination Lawsuit for $17.3 Million

June 14, 2013 The U.S. Postal Service has settled a class-action lawsuit filed by employees in “permanent rehabilitation positions” for $17.3 million, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In Walker v. USPS, claimants argued the Postal Service discriminated against employees with disabilities by forcing them to work fewer hours. Edmund Walker --...