Postal Service wants centralized mailbox locations for new addresses

In today's Federal Newscast, a policy update from the U.S. Postal Service emphasized its preference for so-called clustered box units in new housing development...

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  • The Postal Service is revising its delivery plans for new addresses, and residents may have to meet their mail halfway. In a late-April policy update, USPS emphasized its preference for so-called clustered box units in new housing developments, instead of door-to-door delivery. It will grant curbside delivery only in what it calls very rare exceptions. Only rarely will it permit delivery door-to-door, to wall-mounted mailboxes or through door slots, for new developments. (U.S. Postal Service)
  • Seven defense offices that were facing the scalpel are safe for now. The House Armed Services Committee is walking back its suggestion to get rid of the organizations, which includes the Defense Information Systems Agency. The 2019 defense authorization bill will ask the Pentagon’s chief management officer to justify the offices the committee wanted to kill off. The committee still wants to eliminate the Washington Headquarters Services by 2021. (Federal News Radio)
  • The Navy said it is reestablishing its 2nd Fleet, an organization it eliminated seven years ago. The Navy said it made the decision because of the National Security Strategy’s emphasis on “great power competition.” Its focus will be on operations in the North Atlantic Ocean. But the 2nd Fleet’s resurrection was also recommended by the strategic review the Navy launched in the aftermath of two deadly collisions last year. That report found overlap and inconsistency between administrative and operational responsibilities across the service’s major commands. (Navy)
  • A new command could be coming to Virginia. The Defense Department officially offered to host the proposed NATO Joint Force Command for the Atlantic at its naval facilities in Norfolk, Virginia. It said the new JFC-Norfolk will ensure NATO can conduct operations in the trans-Atlantic region. The North Atlantic Council will make its decision this summer. (Department of Defense)
  • The Air Force is opening up its application period for pilots and drone pilots. Officers interested must submit their applications by Sept. 21. The selection board will meet in November. There is currently a shortage of pilots in the Air Force. It is offering bonuses to pilots who reenlist after 10 years of service.
  • A new way to measure the security of your cloud service is here. Cloud service providers now have a minimum set of standards to conduct penetration testing of their platforms or applications. The Federal Risk Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) issued guidance detailing seven recommendations for cloud providers to follow. FedRAMP said the guide identifies specific attack vectors to include in testing, as well as penetration test reporting requirements. The program office said vendors should be sure to include social engineering, such as phishing as part of the test, as well as using test environments that are the same as the operational ones. (FedRAMP)
  • The Veterans Affairs Department is making it easier for veterans to appeal disability claim decisions. It is removing the need for a veteran to be invited to use the Rapid Appeals Modernization Program. Additionally, VA will launch a pilot this month for its Early Applicability of Appeals Modernization project. Under this project, the appeals board will partner with veterans’ organizations to identify 50 veterans who are dissatisfied with a recent decision on their benefits claim. These veterans will be able to go directly to the Board of Veterans’ Appeals or seek a review in the rapid appeals program. (Department of Veterans Affairs)
  • The Office of Special Counsel is investigating another possible violation of the Hatch Act. OSC is looking to see if the the Environmental Protection Agency broke the rule with a tweet it sent last month. The tweet criticized Democrats who voted against EPA Deputy Administrator Andrew Wheeler’s confirmation. John O’Grady, the president of AFGE Council 238,  filed a complaint to OSC. In an email to O’Grady, the agency said it will look into whether the Hatch Act was violated. (Federal News Radio)
  • A U.S. district court judge said the General Services Administration cut corners on a Freedom on Information Act related to the Trump Hotel in the Old Post Office building. The nonprofit group American Oversight asked GSA for all communications from the Trump transition team regarding the matter, and the agency declined to hand over some documents that were email attachments. Judge Beryl Howell ordered GSA to provide more attachments, remove some redactions and explain its reasoning for not providing the documents sooner. (American Oversight)

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