The Federal Headlines is a daily compilation of the stories you hear discussed on Federal Drive with Tom Temin.
In today’s Top Federal Headlines, after long time head of the Copyrights Office Maria Pallante was mysteriously reassigned to a new role, she submits her letter of resignation.
The former Register of Copyrights announced she will be resigning from her newly assigned role at the end of the week. The Hollywood Reporter said Maria Pallante sent her resignation letter to Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden after she was taken out of her role in the Copyright Office and placed in an advisory role for digital strategy in the Library of Congress. Industry experts and even some members of Congress are baffled by the decision to remove Pallante. She was even locked out of the Library of Congress computer system, a move staffers say is very unusual. (Hollywood Reporter)
Defense Department headquarters officials want to know why the military services are not funding soldier welfare programs. The Manpower and Reserve Affairs chief scolded service leaders for what he calls a failure to fully fund morale, welfare and recreation programs this year. He’ll meet with brass to discuss the matter this week.
DoD issues a new rule updating procedures for Defense Department ID cards. The rule amends its ID card policy to include guidance and list required documents for transgender cardholders looking to modify their gender on their ID cards. DoD wants to ensure it has the correct personal information for those who qualify for benefits. (Federal Register)
Defense Secretary Ash Carter said he’s put a pause on the National Guard’s efforts to recoup supposed improper payments to thousands of servicemembers. Carter said he’s ordered DoD financial managers to stop their collections against California National Guardsmen who were given reenlistment bonuses during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. That state’s auditors determined the bonuses were given improperly, and the Guard has since been demanding repayment. But Carter said many of those troops got the improper payments through no fault of their own, and haven’t had an effective way to appeal for relief. He’s ordered the Pentagon find a streamlined way to reach a resolution on all 2,000 cases by next July. (Federal News Radio)
Air Force acquisition is flying as if its drag parachutes are deployed. A top Air Force buying official chides his colleagues for letting acquisition schedules stretch out too long as the Air Force tries to modernize. Lt. Gen. Arnold Bunch told an industry group in Virginia that it takes too long for the Air Force to add contractors to multiple-award contracts. Bunch said he’s also focusing on cutting the time to award sole source contracts. (Federal News Radio)
The Homeland Security Department has tied up loose ends on an updated cybersecurity plan. Public comment on the 2016 version of the National Cyber Incident Response Plan wrapped up this month. DHS officials said they want to send the plan for White House approval before Christmas with adoption before the inauguration.
More than 85 employees and teams at DHS are honored with top awards from Secretary Jeh Johnson. It’s the third time in three years the agency has held the Secretary’s Award Ceremony since Johnson brought it back. He recognized DHS employees for customer service, teamwork, Unity of Effort, diversity management, excellence and valor. (Federal News Radio)
A DHS Inspector General report has found the Transportation Security Agency could do more to track security badges for employees working in sensitive areas at airports. The IG said TSA is relying too much on information the airports give them. It said TSA will start conducting more tests of badge controls and sharing best practices with airport operators. (Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General)
A new strategy is coming to tackle the three “S’s” of mobility in government. Standardization, simplification, and savings are the core principles of a new draft mobile services roadmap out for public comment. The Mobile Services Category Team released the document and is accepting comments through Oct. 28. The goal is to give agencies a better way to manage approximately $1 billion in annual spend on wireless services and on approximately 1.5 million devices. The draft plan will use a five-step process across 10 categories like app vetting and data tools to develop future acquisition approaches. (Acquisition Gateway)