In Depth Show Blog – October 30, 2013

This is the In Depth show blog. Here you can listen to our interviews, find more information about the guests on the show each day, as well as links to other stories and resources we discuss.

Today’s guests:

Bill Greenwalt
Visiting Fellow
American Enterprise Institute

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A new panel in the House Armed Services Committee will look at reforming the acquisition process inside DoD. Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) says the vice chairman of the committee, Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), will lead the panel. DoD’s acquisition process takes a lot of criticism. But some parts of it should be a model for other agencies to use. Bill Greenwalt, a visting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, testified to a subcommittee of the House Homeland Security Committee about how DHS could apply some lessons learned from the Pentagon. He talks about what he told the subcommittee.

Mike Causey
Senior Correspondent
Federal News Radio

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One and a half percent is the verdict from the Social Security Administration on the cost of living adjustment for 2014. That’s one of the lowest COLAs ever. Federal News Radio Senior Correspondent Mike Causey says it’s a history maker.

Bob Tobias
Director, Key Executive Leadership Programs
American University

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The persistence of morale problems after the government shutdown was a theme I heard throughout the Executive Leadership Conference in Williamsburg this week. Federal leaders say the shutdown was another chink in the armor protecting the government from losing a lot of important employees. Leaders are thinking about how to deal with employees with low morale, but many of them tell me they’re starting to think more about succession planning too.

Kim Weaver
Director of External Affairs
Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board

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The end of the government shutdown meant the end of a small amount of panic among federal employees. The Thrift Savings Plan says it saw a huge increase in participants who took hardship withdrawals. And participants moved huge amounts of money from equity funds into the G fund. Kim Weaver, director of external affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, says it’s a little too early to tell how profound the shutdown was for TSP account owners.

Jason Miller
Executive Editor
Federal News Radio

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The Air Force lost 35 veteran contracting officers over the last year with a combined 700 years of federal experience. Instead of trying to replace them over time, the service is pooling its resources from across the world under a new installation contracting agency. Air Force Maj. Gen. Wendy Masiello is the director of contracting. Federal News Radio executive editor Jason Miller talked Masiello today after she spoke at the Coalition for Government Procurement’s fall conference about the new contracting agency that launched Oct. 1.

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