Agencies get help with recruitment and retainment

In today's Federal Newscast, the Office of Personnel Management sets up a new online course to help HR workers understand their options for improving agency rec...

  • Agencies received guidance on pay and leave flexibilities for recruiting and retaining employees. The Office of Personnel Management has a new online course on HR University. It provides an overview of pay and leave regulations and highlights what options agencies have to address critical recruitment and retention needs. (Chief Human Capital Officers Council)
  • Democratic members of the House Oversight Committee want to know what products or services provided by any of President Donald Trump’s companies agencies are buying. They list several examples, including the State Department spending more than $9,500 on hotel rooms to assist the Secret Service. Lawmakers want the information by Aug. 25. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Defense Department is getting an ethics refresher. Late Friday, the Defense Department released a memo outlining ethics expectations for those working for the military. The memo, signed by Defense Secretary James Mattis, states the military should do what is right at all times regardless of the circumstances or who’s watching. To date, there is no specific known reason for the memo. A Pentagon spokesman said it’s routine correspondence to DoD workforce. The Chief Naval Officer sent out a similar memo last year, when the Navy was embroiled in a number of scandals.
  • The Office of Personnel Management is looking to start its annual review of special pay rates in preparation for an expected January pay raise. It told agencies to submit evaluations for positions that receive a rate of pay that differs from the standard General Schedule. Agencies can recommend these positions for termination, reduction or an increase other than the expected 1.9 percent for GS employees. (Federal News Radio)
  • Veterans Affairs Secretary Dr. David Shulkin urged his employees to innovate. At VA’s Innovation Demo Day, Shulkin stressed how new ideas make the department stronger for veterans. He said they’re the key to solving problems plaguing the department like veteran suicide, aging IT systems and limited choice for medical care. (Federal News Radio)
  • The turnover in the federal IT community continues. Two more long-time federal technology executives are heading out the door and a senior cyber official is taking on additional responsibilities. Federal New Radio confirmed Danny Toler, the Homeland Security Department’s deputy assistant secretary in the Cybersecurity and Communications Office, is retiring after 37 1/2 years of federal service. Along with Toler, the Office of Personnel Management confirmed its chief information officer, Dave DeVries, resigned from his position, effective Sept. 2. And Grant Schneider, the acting federal chief information security officer, is adding National Security Council cyber responsibilities to his portfolio. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Internal Revenue Service issued an alert to strengthen those passwords and update software security in order to block bad actors from hijacking computers used by tax preparers. The warning is part of the agency’s ongoing Protect Your Clients, Protect Yourself initiative. (Internal Revenue Service)
  • The Trump administration promised tough action on the nation’s opioid crisis. Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price stopped short of calling opioid addiction a national emergency. But he didn’t rule out a future declaration. Price said an interagency group with HHS and the departments of State, Justice and Homeland Security will create an action plan for the president soon. It will include making antidotes more widely available and even looking at how pain is treated generally in the U.S.
  • A new website from the Justice Department hopes to help Americans affected by terrorist attacks overseas. The DOJ Office of Justice for Victims of Overseas Terrorism’s new site makes it easier for them to access the office’s resources. It includes emergency contacts, an interactive map showing DOJ’s efforts abroad and press releases to give updates. (Department of Justice)

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