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Kellie Lunney

Senior Correspondent Kellie Lunney covers federal pay and benefits issues, the budget process and financial management. After starting her career in journalism at Government Executive in 2000, she returned in 2008 after four years at sister publication National Journal writing profiles of influential Washingtonians. In 2006, she received a fellowship at the Ohio State University through the Kiplinger Public Affairs in Journalism program, where she worked on a project that looked at rebuilding affordable housing in Mississippi after Hurricane Katrina. She has appeared on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal, NPR and Feature Story News, where she participated in a weekly radio roundtable on the 2008 presidential campaign. In the late 1990s, she worked at the Housing and Urban Development Department as a career employee. She is a graduate of Colgate University.
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Senate Panel Approves OPM Nomination

February 10, 2016 A Senate panel on Wednesday advanced the nomination of Beth Cobert to serve as director of the Office of Personnel Management. The Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee easily reported out the nomination of Cobert, who has been serving as acting OPM director since Katherine Archuleta resigned last summer...

Military Retirees Would Pay More for TRICARE Under White House Budget Proposal

February 9, 2016 All retired service members would pay an annual TRICARE enrollment fee under a new, simplified version of the military’s main health care program outlined in President Obama’s fiscal 2017 budget. TRICARE would consist of two options under the proposal, instead of the several different choices available to beneficiaries now. Enrollees...

Obama Again Urges Paid Parental Leave for Federal Employees

February 9, 2016 President Obama again is urging Congress to provide six weeks of paid parental leave to federal employees as part of his annual budget proposal. The administration’s fiscal 2017 budget released Tuesday supports current legislation pending in the House and Senate that would give federal workers six weeks of paid administrative...

Judge Reverses Firing of VA Senior Executive in Albany

February 8, 2016 This story has been updated. For the third time in less than a month, an administrative judge has reversed the Veterans Affairs Department’s decision to discipline a senior executive accused of wrongdoing -- and the VA is not happy about it. The Merit Systems Protection Board on Friday overturned the...

Retirement Backlog Jumps in January

February 8, 2016 The backlog of federal retirement claims increased 73 percent between December and January due to an influx of new applications last month, according to the latest Office of Personnel Management data. OPM received 15,423 retirement applications in January, 10,670 more than it received in December. Because of the increase, the...

Senior Executives Association Names New Interim President

February 5, 2016 The Senior Executives Association has tapped its legislative director to serve as interim president. Jason Briefel is taking over for Tim Dirks, who stepped down for “personal reasons,” according to an SEA press release. The personnel move is the latest reshuffling at the group that advocates for the federal government’s...

New TRICARE Drug Co-Pays Take Effect

February 4, 2016 On Feb. 1, some TRICARE beneficiaries started paying a bit more for their prescription drugs. Co-payments for brand-name drugs and certain generic medications increased between $2 and $4 on Monday, as a result of changes required by the fiscal 2016 National Defense Authorization Act. Co-pays for brand-name prescription drugs obtained...

Obama Will Propose 1.6 Percent Pay Raise for Feds and Troops In 2017 Budget

February 3, 2016 President Obama will propose a 1.6 percent across-the-board pay raise for federal civilian and military personnel for 2017. An administration official on Wednesday confirmed the proposed figure, which will be included in Obama’s fiscal 2017 budget. The White House will release the fiscal 2017 budget on Tuesday. Federal civilian workers...

Fewer Over-Income Families Could End Up Staying in Public Housing Under Proposed Rule

February 3, 2016 The Housing and Urban Development Department wants feedback on reducing the number of families in public housing who earn significantly more than the income limits on their units. A proposed rule published in Wednesday’s Federal Register seeks to better define the parameters of a law that allows families living in...

Reinstated Senior Executives Will Face Some Punishment, Says VA Deputy Secretary

February 2, 2016 Two Veterans Affairs Department employees who were just reinstated to the Senior Executive Service after being demoted will face some kind of lesser punishment for their poor judgment, said Deputy Secretary Sloan Gibson on Tuesday. In addition, Gibson is launching a one-week investigation of two other high-ranking officials involved in...