Federal Employees News Digest

Senate advances background check bill

The Senate last month approved legislation that bars federal contractors and employees who have compromised the integrity of a background investigation from performing future background investigations.

The Security Clearance Accountability, Reform and Enhancement (SCARE) Act (S. 434), sponsored by Sen. Jon Tester (D-Mont.), now goes to the House.

"As the Trump administration begins to take shape and a new crop of folks start requesting security clearances, it's more important than ever to make sure this process is thorough," said Tester, a member of the Homeland Security Committee. "We must protect our nation's most sensitive information from falling into the wrong hands and the SCARE Act will better ensure our nation is protected from insider threats."

According to a Congressional Research Service summary of the legislation, the bill “deems a federal agency employee to be unfit for federal employment if the agency determines that the employee has engaged in misconduct affecting the integrity of a background investigation, including falsification of any information relating to such an investigation;” and “prohibits an individual who has engaged in covered misconduct from being appointed to or continuing to occupy a position that requires the performance of background investigations.”

The bill also extends those sanctions to contract employees.

See the bill at: https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/senate-bill/434.

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Contributors

Edward A. Zurndorfer Certified Financial Planner
Mike Causey Columnist
Tom Fox VP for Leadership and Innovation, Partnership for Public Service
Mathew B. Tully Legal Analyst

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