Aerospace industry wants full appropriations package from Congress

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, the Aerospace Industries Association urges Congress to pass a budget for 2017 along with other demands.

  • The Aerospace Industries Association has sent a letter to Congress urging its members to pass a completed appropriation package for fiscal year 2017 instead of a continuing resolution. The more than 70 CEOs and industry representatives also want the Export-Import Bank to be restored to full functionality. (Aerospace Industries Association)
  • President-elect Donald Trump has also received a later from a major organization. The National Military Families Association has reminded Trump of the effects budget uncertainty has had on the military community. Closed commissaries and furloughed medical clinics are a couple of the problems NMFA said sequestration has created. Sequestration will return to create across-the-board cuts on defense and domestic spending in 2018 unless Congress acts. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Navy has awarded Lockheed Martin a contract for a new batch of F-35 fighters. The $7.2 billion contract will fund 90 aircraft, half for the Air Force. The Pentagon is only committing $1.3 billion at the moment for planes to be delivered in 2018. The terms and conditions for the full funding are yet to be worked out under the so-called undefinitized modification of the low-rate initial production deal. Foreign military sales account for 16 of the new batch.
  • The names and Social Security numbers of over 130,000 sailors have been breached. The Navy said its investigation has shown the information was accessed by unknown people. The materials were on a contractor’s laptop. No sign the information has been misused yet, the Navy is looking into providing credit monitoring services. (Department of Defense)
  • The General Services Administration says it won’t prosecute people who find cybersecurity flaws in certain systems. Through its 18F development group, GSA’s Technology Transformation Service has promised not to prosecute researchers looking for bugs in five specific systems. They include vote.gov and the 18F site itself. Researchers must promise not to exploit vulnerabilities they find beyond what’s necessary to confirm them. They’re required to keep mum for 90 days after notifying 18F. And no looking at confidential information. (18F)
  • Members of Energy Federal Credit Union voted yes on merging with PenFed Credit Union. PenFed said the bank’s 11,000 new members will earn higher rates on savings and more access to lower rates on loans. The merger will take effect on first day of 2017. Energy Federal Credit Union currently has $103 million in assets. (PenFed Credit Union)
  • To help regulate commerce generated from online sales this holiday season, Customs and Border Protection has established the E-Commerce and Small Business Branch. It will reside in the agency’s Office of Trade. CBP said e-commerce sales are expected to reach $4 trillion by 2020, the new branch will help address some of the dynamic issues those sales create. (Customs and Border Protection)
  • The Obama administration has put a freeze on Senior Executive Service hiring, for now. The Office of Personnel Management said it won’t accept any new Qualification Review Board cases from SES candidates starting Dec. 7, the day President Barack Obama wants all resignation letters from agency heads. The freeze continues until the Trump administration appoints a new agency head. OPM said this isn’t a new practice. It’s continuing to follow a generally established precedent from previous years. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Secret Service gets high marks for making crucial management changes fast. The National Academy of Public Administration panel examining the Secret Service said the agency has made progress in professionalizing its administrative, management, technical issues. This follows a series of ethical and operational breaches. Still, the NAPA review team came up with eleven recommendations. Among them, establish an ethics and compliance officer within its Office of Integrity. And assess the chief financial officer organization. (National Academy of Public Administration)