AUTHOR ARCHIVES

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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Keeping the Mail Relevant

April 1, 2013 Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night can stop the U.S. Postal Service, its creed reads. Nor can massively declining mail volume, though the agency will have to get more creative to survive, says Paul Vogel, outgoing president of digital solutions. “The Postal Service needs to re-brand,”...

USPS Should Charge More Where It Can, Report Says

March 29, 2013 The U.S. Postal Service should make better use of the pricing flexibility it already has to compensate for declining mail volumes, according to the Postal Regulatory Commission. PRC released its Annual Compliance Determination Thursday, evaluating USPS’ pricing and performance. While the Postal Service has neglected opportunities to grow revenue, the...

Furlough Reprieve at Customs and Border Protection?

March 29, 2013 Customs and Border Protection is “weighing its options” regarding the necessity of furloughs this fiscal year, according to union officials involved in negotiations. CBP had previously planned to furlough all 60,000 of its employees due to the across-the-board spending cuts from sequestration. Shawn Moran, a spokesman for the National Border...

Senate Backs Amendment to Boost IGs' Power

March 28, 2013 The Senate has passed a bipartisan provision to provide a stronger force of inspectors general and to make agencies more accountable to their auditors. The language -- proposed by Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and co-sponsored by Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., among others -- passed by unanimous consent as an amendment...

Postal Service Accelerates Partial Closure at 53 Processing Plants

March 27, 2013 The U.S. Postal Service has accelerated plans to shut down processing operations at 53 facilities by one year, according to a letter the agency sent to a postal union. USPS will cease to process mail at the plants by the end of 2013, instead of 2014, the agency said in...

Federal Benefits Play Key Role in Supreme Court’s Gay Marriage Debate

March 27, 2013 The Supreme Court debated on Wednesday whether federal employe­­­e benefits should be extended to same-sex couples, as justices heard arguments over the constitutionality of a federal law defining marriage as between a man and a woman. The Obama administration argued the 1996 Defense of Marriage Act to be unconstitutional in...

OMB Tells Agencies to Modernize Financial Systems

March 26, 2013 Agencies must streamline their financial systems to reduce costs and increase transparency, according to a White House memo. Currently, the Office of Management and Budget said, financial systems are designed to meet agency-specific needs and lack a governmentwide approach. In the future, agencies should create shared solutions to modernize core...

Are Relocation Incentives Overlooked as a Recruiting Tool?

March 25, 2013 The federal government must improve its employee relocation program in order to recruit and retain the best workers, according to a federal managers advocacy group. The Senior Executives Association released a white paper Monday saying the government currently treats employee relocation as a procurement and travel issue, rather than a...

USPS Ranks Last Among Postal Services Worldwide, Report Finds

March 22, 2013 The U.S. Postal Service ranked as the lowest-performing postal agency or commercial operator in a new global, private industry report. The survey, released by Accenture, evaluated 24 government-operated postal organizations and two private companies that together deliver 75 percent of the world’s mail. The report found USPS burdened by legacy...

Bill Aims to Cure Rising Prescription Drug Costs

March 22, 2013 This story has been updated. Rep. Stephen Lynch, D-Mass., has proposed a bill to increase oversight and regulation of prescription drug costs for federal employee health beneficiaries. The Federal Employees Health Benefits Program Prescription Drug Integrity, Transparency and Cost Savings Act (H.R. 1367) would provide “the best benefits at the...