The appointment of Dan Sitterly, a former career executive and political appointee, as a new leader at the Department of Veterans Affairs' accountability office, shows just how complex personnel moves during a presidential transition can be.
In today's Federal Newscast, top Democrats on the House and Senate VA Committees say Secretary Robert Wilkie is using government time and taxpayer money to take politically motivated trips to states key to the upcoming presidential and Senate races.
Democrats on the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee say roughly 17,000 community care providers were also potential victims of the VA data breach, which the department made public earlier this week. VA on Friday said just 13 of those providers were truly impacted by the breach, and six had payments diverted.
House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) suggested giving the IRS $2 billion under the Technology Modernization Fund and then letting agencies use the savings from the tax agency for other projects.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services told employees it would delay the possibility of furloughs until the end of August. Employees will receive another furlough notice in the coming days reflecting the new potential date, the agency said.
After struggling to fill tens of thousands of vacancies for years, the Veterans Health Administration has hired more than 23,000 new employees in three-to-four months. Senators are impressed with the results but wished it didn't take a pandemic to make much-needed changes to VA hiring and onboarding procedures.
The Department of Veterans Affairs said it needs a six-month supply of personal protective equipment and other medical supplies to adequately handle a second wave of the coronavirus pandemic, but it has a 30-day supply on hand today.
Though the Department of Veterans Affairs over-projected the impact the coronavirus pandemic would have on the veterans population, the agency said it's preparing for potential "rebound" in the fall.
In today's Federal Newscast, the Department of Housing and Urban Development's inspector general says the agency was generally well prepared for the change to mandatory telework.
A little more than 12% of the workforce at the Veterans Health Administration has been tested for coronavirus to date, the department said Wednesday. On-demand testing for VA employees isn't available just yet, despite past statements.
At least 40% of employees at the Department of Veterans Affairs could be absent at any one time during a severe coronavirus outbreak, the agency estimated. VA's inspector general and employee unions have also expressed concerns with staffing and supply shortages.
Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie on Wednesday defended the firing of his deputy secretary, describing the removal as a "simple business decision."
In today's Federal Newscast, the Competitive Pay for Leaders in Veterans Health Care Act will correct an unintended consequence from a 2010 bill that was supposed to help Veterans Affairs Department fill Senior Executive Service positions.
In today's Federal Newscast, the Congressional Budget Office says agencies will not have to cut their spending because of sequestration in fiscal 2020, bad news for budget hawks concerned about the national debt.