Miscue means some Federal Protective Service inspectors earned more than VP

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  • The Federal Protective Service mismanaged its payroll and budget, leading to excessive overtime and spending shortfalls. The Department of Homeland Security’s inspector general found seven of the 19 inspectors it reviewed earned so much overtime, they made more than most senior executives, with three earning more than the vice president. The IG said despite the FPS releasing new overtime requirements in December 2017, it needs more detailed overtime guidance and to communicate it to the workforce more effectively. (Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General)
  • Agencies impacted by the latest budget uncertainty have started preparations for a possible government shutdown. A senior administration official said the Office of Management and Budget is telling agencies to discuss planning ahead of a potential lapse in appropriations later this week. OMB guidance requires that it remind senior agency officials to update shutdown contingency plans. Congress has until this Friday to find some sort of funding solution and avoid a partial government shutdown. (Federal News Network)
  • The Department of Health and Human Services and National Treasury Employees Union have until Friday to submit final offers on a new collective bargaining agreement. Negotiations between both parties have been tense. A federal mediator sat in on two weeks of negotiations with HHS and NTEU after the department declared an impasse this summer. NTEU says one of HHS’ proposals would limit telework to one day a week. HHS said it’s not proposing any change or reduction to telework. (Federal News Network)
  • The Department of Veterans Affairs spent far less on suicide prevention media outreach in 2018 than it has in previous years. The Government Accountability Office said VA spent 57,000 of its $6 million media budget on suicide prevention outreach, producing 47 pieces of social media content as of July 2018, compared with 159 pieces during all of 2017. VA said leadership turnover contributed to lower media activity output this year. The agency’s senior leaders have declared veterans suicide prevention a top clinical priority. (Government Accountability Office)
  • An Air Force pilot program which gives enlisted airmen more clarity into their next change of station is permanent. The Base of Preference program gives airmen who spent four years or more on station the ability to apply for new assignments in the continental U.S. The Air Force will post open assignments and all qualifying airmen will have the opportunity to apply for them. (Air Force)
  • President Donald Trump planned to sign an executive order establishing a military command for space Tuesday. Vice President Mike Pence is expected to make a formal announcement and reveal more details about the administration’s plans during an appearance at Kennedy Space Center. The plan to create a Space Command is in line with a strategy the Pentagon outlined earlier this year, and could serve as a precursor to the president’s proposal for a separate military service to focus on the space domain. That step, however, would have to be approved by Congress. (Federal News Network)
  • Air Force Space Education is looking for a mobile-friendly app so airmen can collaborate with the software development community to develop a new Space Operations and Training tool. The Air Force, along with defense innovation hub MGMWERX, is hosting a challenge for companies, open until January 7. (MGMWERX)
  • The National Science Foundation is putting up $100,000 to figure out how to ensure the federal workforce is ready for jobs of today and in the future. The NSF Career Compass Challenge wants ideas to enable individual skill-matching and tailored training. Through the competition, NSF wants an approach that uses information about a person to predict jobs that suit an individual’s strengths and helps them develop the skills to qualify for current and future careers. The two-step challenge begins with white papers and then initial winners will develop a prototype. (CIO.gov)
  • With soon to be former Secretary Ryan Zinke announcing he will be leaving the Interior Department by the end of the year, there is already speculation into who will replace him. The names include some current and former members of Congress, such as Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah), current chair of the House Natural Resources Committee. Another is Idaho Republican Raul Labrador, who also serves on the committee and is retiring from Congress next month. (The Hill)
  • There was an uptick in agencies using the Energy Department’s Indefinite Delivery, Indefinite Quantity contract vehicle for energy savings projects. Last year, agencies awarded more than $800 million for facility infrastructure investment projects. Leslie Nicholls, the strategic director of the agency’s Federal Energy Management Program, told House lawmakers it was a record year for the contract vehicle. Since 1998, the agencies have invested more than $6 billion into the IDIQ and saved nearly $14 billion in energy costs. (Federal News Network)
  • In the countdown to the holiday season, the Postal Service is ramping up its deliveries. This being the agency’s busiest week, USPS expects to deliver nearly 3 billion pieces of mail and packages. Between Thanksgiving and Christmas Day, the Postal Service projected it will have delivered more than 900 million packages and 15 billion pieces of mail. (U.S. Postal Service)

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