Browsing: OPM

OPM, background contractor on vetting of Navy Yard shooter

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Before he shot and killed 12 people in the Navy Yard rampage, Aaron Alexis had a string of arrests spanning years. That’s led many to wonder how he could’ve received and retained the security clearance that enabled him to enter the secure building in the first place. On Thursday, the company that performed the background check on Alexis in 2007 and the agency that oversaw the work issued separate statements in response to questions about the shooting. Here they are in their entirety: “The security clearance process begins when an agency identifies a person who will require eligibility for access…

A background checker's checkered past

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Ramon Davila is one name in a growing list. He’s among the nearly two dozen federal background check investigators to face criminal charges in recent years for falsifying his work on investigations performed on contractors and employees seeking government clearances. But more than year after charging Davila, the Justice Department only just learned that he had a troubling past that went unnoticed during his own background investigation. It turns out, officials at another federal law enforcement agency decided nearly a decade ago to keep out of his personnel folder serious misconduct findings against Davila stemming from his years as a…

Frankenstorm closes DC-area offices Monday

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With Hurricane Sandy barreling towards the East Coast, the Office of Personnel Management just announced that federal offices in the Washington area will be closed to the public Monday. That means that most employees will be granted an excused absence, unless they’re required to telework, on official travel outside of the DC area, on leave without pay, or on an alternative work schedule day off. There are a few other categories of employees who won’t get the day off, however. Emergency employees are expected to show up for work tomorrow, unless they’re told otherwise by their bosses. And if you…

GAO: Agencies rehire few retirees at full pay

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About three years ago, Congress granted agencies wide authority to rehire federal retirees and pay them both their full pensions as well as their full salaries. But the Government Accountability Office today released a report that found six federal agencies are barely using the so-called dual compensation waiver authority at all. GAO looked at how many waivers were granted by the Treasury Department, Office of Personnel Management, U.S. Postal Service, U.S. Agency for International Development, Small Business Administration, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in fiscal 2010 and 2011. Those six agencies granted only 187 waivers in the first year, and…

Government employing more people with disabilities

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The number of people with disabilities employed by the federal government increased 9 percent in fiscal 2011, according to a recent report from the Office of Personnel Management. The government employed 187,313 people with disabilities in fiscal 2010, and 204,189 in 2011, the July 25 report said. That means the percentage of the federal workforce with disabilities increased from 10.7 percent to 11 percent. “This is more people with disabilities in federal service both in real terms and by percentage than at any time in the past 20 years,” OPM Director John Berry said in the report’s foreword. “While we…

Federal Times on the air

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Federal Times reporter Stephen Losey will appear on the TV show Capital Insider this evening to talk about the problems the Office of Personnel Management has had getting federal retirees their correct annuities. If you’re in the Washington area, tune into channel 8 (which now goes by the name TBD) at 8 p.m.

Bike share program for feds on the way

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Feds, are you itching to go for a bike ride? The government has just what you’re looking for. The federal government has teamed up with the District of Columbia’s Capital Bikeshare program to provide employees easy access to bicycles in Washington and Arlington, Va. The Office of Personnel Management said the deal will eventually allow feds round-the-clock access to 1,000 bikes at 114 stations. OPM hasn’t said yet what the government’s corporate partnership is going to mean in terms of group rates, or when the program will start, but we’ll post more details when they’re available. OPM Director John Berry…

They always come in threes…

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First Peter Orszag. Then Gen. Stanley McChrystal. And CNN just reported that Kal Penn, better known as Kumar, has officially left the White House. It’s hard to tell which will be the most devastating loss to the administration. Seriously, though, the Washington Post’s Al Kamen has a roundup of potential Orszag replacements here, including current Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry. But whoever ends up replacing Orszag will face the thankless task of reducing the nation’s deficit, as Slate’s Christopher Beam details here.

Labor: FMLA covers same-sex partners' children

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The Labor Department yesterday said it interprets the Family and Medical Leave Act to allow an employee to take leave to care for any child for whom that employee is the primary caregiver, “regardless of the legal or biological relationship.” This new interpretation of how FMLA defines “son and daughter” means that any employee in the United States will be able to take unpaid time off to care for any child he is serving as parent to. That includes an employee’s nephew or grandchild, if the employee has stepped in to raise the child, or the son or daughter of an employee’s unmarried domestic…

Domestic partners — both straight and gay — get leave benefits July 14

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Federal employees will be able to take leave to attend to their sick or deceased domestic partners beginning July 14, under final regulations issued today by the Office of Personnel Management. Feds also will be able to take up to 13 days of sick leave to care for their domestic partners or their partners’ parents, children or grandchildren. And agencies will be able to advance feds up to 13 days of sick leave if they are out of leave. Take note that these changes will apply equally to both unmarried heterosexual and homosexual domestic partnerships. The Obama administration recently extended long…

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