Monthly Archives: January, 2010

CBP NY: PSU (Puppy Saving Unit)

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Customs and Border Protection agents do a lot to serve our nation. They track terrorists. They stop drug traffickers. And they save puppies. Or at least one lucky pooch that was found nearly frozen to death in the cargo hold of a plane at New York’s JFK Airport on Saturday. According to the local ABC affiliate there, three CBP officers were informed that two puppies shipped from Mexico froze to death on the flight. Upon arriving on the scene, the officers noticed one puppy was clinging to life. The trio revived the pup and a vet tells ABC the dog…

Agencies to cut greenhouse gas emissions 28 percent

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The White House just announced that the federal government will cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 28 percent by 2020, compared to 2008 benchmarks. The ambitious federal target is the aggregate of percentage reduction targets reported by 35 federal agencies earlier this month. President Obama ordered agencies in an October executive order to begin measuring and reducing their carbon footprints, the first such comprehensive effort by the federal government. I’ll be sitting in on a conference call at 11 a.m. with administration officials to discuss the initiative. Check back at www.federaltimes.com for a full report.

Martha Johnson on way to GSA?

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Sen. Harry Reid, D-Nevada, filed cloture on the nomination of Martha Johnson last night. Johnson, you’ll recall, was tapped by Pres. Obama last year to lead the General Services Administration, but her confirmation has been held up by Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo. Read about the flap here, here and here. And stay tuned for continuing coverage of her nomination saga.

Brownie doing a heckuva a job on air

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Remember Michael Brown, that former FEMA director President George W. Bush nicknamed Brownie and praised for responding quickly to Hurricane Katrina? Ever wondered what he thinks of Washington now? Well, now you can know, as Brown has just received his own talk show on KOA, Denver’s highest-rated radio station. Brown will pontificate on politics from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. weeknights on the AM station. Kris Olinger, director of AM programming for Clear Channel Denver, told Denver Westword, a blog, that Brown was the best choice for the station. Brown’s experience in the Bush administration is also a “definite positive,”…

White House highlights GSA

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The General Services Administration is getting a lot of attention from White House this week. Last night, I reported that Pres. Obama appeared to call out Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., for holding up Martha Johnson’s nomination to lead the agency. Today, the White House blog chose GSA to illustrate the new feature: “The President’s Cabinet Reporting to You.” Coincidence? Or a sign of how the White House views the government’s procurement and real estate arm?

Hackers mar U.S. House sites after SOTU

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Hackers defaced 49 U.S. House members’ Web sites hours after President Obama delivered his State of the Union address Dec. 28. The hackers took down all of the Web sites’ material, replacing it with a vulgar string of text: “F— OBAMA!! Red Eye CREW !!!!! O RESTO E HACKER !!! by HADES; m4V3RiCk; T4ph0d4 — FROM BRASIL.” National Journal screencapped the hacked site of Rep. Russ Carnahan, D-Mo. Click here to see the image (strong language, may not be safe for your workplace). Most of the hacked Web sites are still down. The hackers hit sites belonging to both Democrats…

Analysts: Obama's freeze won't be too painful

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Much has been written about the politics of President Obama’s call for a partial spending freeze. (In short, they’re hard to figure out: The freeze annoys liberals, it’s too small to placate conservatives, and because it exempts defense spending, it hasn’t earned many plaudits from real fiscal hawks.) Less has been written about the policy side, partly because the details of the freeze won’t be public until Obama releases his budget on Monday. But the sense I get — and I alluded to this in a quick State of the Union story last night — is that the freeze will…

SOTU: Presidential shout-out to GSA nominee?

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Did President Obama just call out Sen. Kit Bond, R-Mo., for holding up the confirmation of Martha Johnson to lead GSA? You decide. Here is what Obama said in tonight’s State of the Union address regarding the hold up of several of his nominees: The confirmation of well-qualified public servants should not be held hostage to the pet projects or grudges of a few individual Senators. And here are two links to our past posts about the hold Bond has on Johnson’s full Senate confirmation. Both note the hold is directly related to Bond’s desire to move a federal complex…

Judge: No dancing at Jefferson Memorial

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Want to dance on federal property? Well, you can’t if you’re at the Jefferson Memorial in Washington, D.C., a federal judge ruled Jan. 25. U.S. District Judge John Bates wrote in a 26-page opinion that the memorial’s interior is not a public forum, ruling against a woman who was arrested along with 17 others while dancing in the Jefferson Memorial to celebrate the third president’s birthday on April 12, 2008, reported The Washington Post. The celebrants were listening to music via headphones and danced to celebrate “the individualist spirit for which Jefferson is known,” wrote Alan Gura, the attorney for…

Federal Times on the air

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For those of you in the Washington area, I’ll be appearing on News Channel 8 this evening to discuss my story about a U.S. Postal Service executive who steered sole-source contracts to his business associates, and the questions some are raising about those deals. Tune into Federal News Tonight at 7:30 p.m. to see the interview.

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