Given everything that happened in the pandemic of 2020, one would think the government would have learned a thing or two about bio responses. It has learned a lot, actually. But there is more work to do, according to the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
Defense officials are telling Congress that the military services are still reviewing possible discipline of troops who refused the order to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Officials provided few details on how many of those who were forced out of the military would like to return. During a congressional hearing Tuesday, lawmakers questioned why service members should still face discipline since the vaccine requirement has been rescinded. The undersecretary of defense for personnel, Gilbert Cisneros Jr., told a House Armed Services subcommittee that some service members who disobeyed the lawful order to get the vaccine — and did not seek any type of exemption — are still going through the review process.
The Pentagon has formally dropped its COVID-19 vaccination mandate, but a new memo signed by Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin also gives commanders some discretion in how or whether to deploy troops who are not vaccinated.
In today's Federal Newscast: Republican Senators urge Defense Secretary Austin to reinstate military members and to issue backpay for vaccine-related discharges. The personal information of more than 250,000 people possibly exposed in data breach. And L3Harris Technologies is buying Aerojet Rocketdyne for almost $5 billion.
The COVID-19 vaccine mandate for members of the U.S. military would be rescinded under the annual defense bill heading for a vote this week in Congress. If the measure passes, it will end a policy that helped ensure the vast majority of troops were vaccinated but also raised concerns that it harmed recruitment and retention.
House investigators say a federal contractor that provided identity verification services for the Internal Revenue Service overstated its capacity to perform its services. The investigators say ID.me also made false claims about the amount of money lost to pandemic fraud in an apparent effort to increase demand for its services. The investigation of firm ID.me began in April after critics said the facial recognition software could become a target of cyberthreats and presented privacy concerns. A company representative says “calling ID.me’s estimate too high or baseless is premature, and we welcome additional oversight on this important matter."
A new report and Pentagon data show that suicides across the active duty U.S. military decreased over the past 18 months, driven by sharp drops in the Air Force and Marine Corps last year and a similar decline among Army soldiers during the first six months of this year.
Sen. Joe Manchin has abandoned his push to speed up the permitting process for energy projects
For the first time in a decade, Americans will pay less next year on monthly premiums for Medicare’s Part B plan, which covers routine doctors’ visits and other outpatient care
The question of whether the Biden administration can require federal employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 has been argued in an appeals court in New Orleans for a second time
Reports of sexual assaults across the U.S. military jumped by 13% last year, driven by significant increases in the Army and the Navy as bases began to move out of pandemic restrictions and public venues opened back up
The Coast Guard Academy is disenrolling seven cadets for failing to comply with the military’s COVID-19 vaccination mandate
The U.S. Secret Service said Friday that it has recovered $286 million in fraudulently obtained pandemic loans and is returning the money to the Small Business Administration
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, is leaving the federal government in December