Fort Rucker sheds its Confederate moniker with a name change

In today's Federal Newscast: Alabama's Fort Rucker sheds its Confederate moniker with a name change. USA Jobs is back online. And snail mail just got more expen...

  • Another Army installation named for a Confederate general got a name change Monday. Alabama's Fort Rucker, known as the home of Army aviation, will now be called Fort Novosel. Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael Novosel was awarded a Medal of Honor for flying a medical evacuation under fire during the Vietnam War. The fort previously carried the name of Confederate General Edmond Rucker, who worked in the railroad business, after the Civil War, with Nathan Bedford Forrest, the first Grand Wizard of the KKK. Fort Novosel is the second in a total of eight Army bases to get new names that replace names from the Confederacy.
    (Fort Rucker/Fort Novosel Installation re-designation ceremony - Email from USARMY Pentagon HQ)
  • Low pay, poor work-life balance, unmanageable workloads and limited telework. One federal agency is seeing it all. The Social Security Administration is facing a 25-year staffing low, as the number of SSA beneficiaries continues to climb. The American Federation of Government Employees is sounding the alarm over rapidly worsening work conditions. The union said more than half of Social Security’s employees are looking to leave the agency within the year. AFGE is also calling for $2 billion above the fiscal 2024 White House budget request to address the staffing issues.
  • USA Jobs is back online after technical issues took the website down for most of the day Monday. The Office of Personnel Management pulled USA Jobs offline for maintenance after it began experiencing technical issues early in the morning yesterday. OPM recommended that agencies with job postings ending on April 10 extend the openings to accommodate candidates who might have missed the application deadline due to the website issues.
    (USA Jobs - OPM)
  • The protests of the CIO-SP4 awards are piling up faster than a snow storm in Buffalo. The National Institutes of Health IT Acquisition and Assessment Center is waist deep in complaints over its initial award to 431 companies under its $50 billion dollar CIO-SP4 IT services governmentwide acquisition contract. The Government Accountability Office received 112 protests, filed by unsuccessul bidders. GAO has until mid-July to decide these cases. Generally, the vendors said NITAAC's decision to eliminate their self-scoring proposals from the competition was faulty. The protestors said NITACC’s cut-off score threshold was too high. Since CIO-SP4 kicked off in 2021, NITAAC now has faced 268 total protests.
    (Bid protest docket - Government Accountability Office)
  • The Defense Department is looking to expand a cybersecurity program for contractors. DoD is hoping to finalize a rule later this spring for sharing cyber-threat data with more defense contractors. The Defense Cyber Crime Center (DC3) currently shares information about cyber threats with contractors cleared to handle classified information. But Stacy Bostjanick, chief of industrial base cybersecurity, said the new rule will let DC3 expand its threat information sharing program to contractors who handle controlled unclassified information as well. She said interested contractors can sign information sharing agreements with DC3 once the rule is finalized.
  • The Postal Service is about to launch a new dashboard to see how well it is delivering mail on time. USPS is standing up its dashboard as part of the Postal Service Reform Act that passed a year ago. The agency expects the public dashboard will go online in mid-May and will help USPS address regional delays in on-time delivery. The dashboard is expected to complement existing data tracked by the USPS inspector general’s office and its regulator, the Postal Regulatory Commission. The commission is putting off updates to its beta dashboard until it sees what data USPS will produce.
  • The Postal Service has proposed another price increase for a first-class stamp to 66 cents on July 9. That is two increases, totaling six cents in just 12 months. USPS said it is raising rates to keep up with operating costs driven by inflation.
  • A new cohort of 20 private-sector technology experts has signed up for a one-year tour of duty in the federal government. The General Services Administration said these latest Presidential Innovation Fellows will work with 13 agencies over the next year as strategic advisers. They will work at agencies ranging from DoD to OMB to VA to the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health on projects around customer experience, cybersecurity and data analytics. The White House launched the Presidential Innovation Fellows in 2012 and more than 250 people have worked at more than 50 agencies over the last 10 years.
  • The Defense Department took another step toward solving recruiting challenges Monday with the appointment of its first chief talent management officer. Brynt Parmeter will lead the department’s efforts to put a talent acquisition and management strategy into place. Parmeter is a retired Army colonel who previously worked for Walmart in recruiting former service members and has also worked for the Army Human Resources Command. He will oversee updates and reforms for remote and hybrid work, practices for developing and tracking talent, and encouraging movement of talent across agencies.
  • Agencies are investigating a leak of highly classified documents about the war in Ukraine, but U.S. officials admit they don’t yet know who could be behind the disclosures. The leaks were first revealed on Friday. John Kirby, the Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the National Security Council in the White House, also told reporters on Monday that officials are not sure if more documents could be released. The Defense Department is investigating the leaks and the Justice Department has opened a criminal investigation. The documents are labeled secret and top secret, and first appeared on the online social platform Discord more than a month ago.

Copyright © 2024 Federal News Network. All rights reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

Related Stories

    (GettyImages/Bloomberg/Luke Sharrett)USPS coronavirus

    USPS reform law sought to ease financial burdens. A year later, what’s changed?

    Read more