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The first step to combating fraud in your agency is knowing you have a fraud problem, so says the first part in a new anti-fraud playbook developed by the CFO Council and the Bureau of the Fiscal Service. The document divides the plays in four phases, each with information to help agencies reduce the risks they face. The playbook also clarifies actions needed to streamline program integrity initiatives to help agencies reduce the amount of money lost through improper payments. (CFO Council)
Sixty-seven percent of employees at the Veterans Affairs Department said they were satisfied with their jobs, in an employee engagement survey implemented separately from the Office of Personnel Management’s governmentwide Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey. Secretary Robert Wilkie said the survey shows improvement, but workers continue to give senior leadership low marks. Forty-nine percent said senior leaders generate high levels of motivation in the workplace. (Department of Veterans Affairs)
Federal employees continue to retire later and later. OPM said the average retirement age for feds now is 61.8 years. The report was made up of most full time employees of the executive branch, excluding the U.S. Postal Service and many intelligence agencies. The number of retirement claims are up 24 percent from last year. (Federal News Network)
The Congressional Research Service laid out where the Trump administration needs help from Congress in implementing its reorganization proposal. CRS said OPM has the administrative authority to reorganize its functions, but Congress may need to amend OPM’s statutory authority in Title 5. Shifting OPM’s retirement services to the General Services Administration may also need a statutory change. (Federation of American Scientists)
Look for five new job classifications out of an OPM initiative. Deputy chief of staff Steve Billy said the new occupational and associated pay systems will be finished within a year. An interagency advisory group will help OPM come up with the specific jobs. He says they’ll be outside of the general schedule system but operate within competitive merit principles. Billy cited a 20-year-old but never-used Title V provision giving OPM the authority to establish the jobs.
Democratic lawmakers and the General Services Administration clashed again on plans for the FBI headquarters. Five House members released new emails from GSA, FBI, and White House officials. They claimed President Donald Trump played a major role in scrapping plans for a new campus in suburban Maryland or Virginia. GSA maintains it was the director’s decision. (Federal News Network)
The Navy took the next step to modernize its NMCI network. The Navy officially reached the end of the beginning of its network convergence and modernization effort called Next Generation Enterprise Network Recompete. The Navy’s Program Executive Office-Enterprise Information Systems issued the second of two requests for proposals under NGEN-R. The solicitation is for service management, integration and transport services. The Navy is seeking a vendor to deliver most of the IT infrastructure that makes up the service’s portion of NMCI, including voice, video and data services. Bids are due January 10. (Federal News Network)
The Army’s Soldier for Life program is broadening its reach to soon-to-be retirees. The organization’s focus is changing as the veteran unemployment rate stays at about 3.9 percent. The expansion includes a new publication called Change of Mission for service members who have served 17 years or more, to help prepare them for retirement. The newsletter will prepare soldiers for retirement and inform them of benefits. Change of Mission will be delivered quarterly to soldiers’ email addresses. (Federal News Network)
The military might not see funding in 2020 like it has in the past two years. Trump asked his cabinet members to cut their budgets by 5 percent for the 2020 fiscal year. It’s still unclear if that decrease applies to the Defense Department, which tends to be exempt from certain restrictions. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis was not in the room at the time Trump made the announcement. Trump later stated he thought the 2020 defense budget would be about $700 billion. That would amount to about a 2.2 percent drop from 2019’s budget. (Federal News Network)