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Feds vie for top prize in cybersecurity contest

This week, Nathan Abse interviews Harry Mourtos, IT specialist and lead on the President’s Cup Cybersecurity Competition that rewards cybersecurity skills among federal employees.

whistleblower (Lightspring/

Whistleblower ‘dissent channels’ aren’t working, watchdog says

Although some employees can file complaints without fear of reprisal, many see dissent channels as useless or worse, a new report finds.

Senior execs detail OPM modernization tactics

The Senior Executives Association, which represents members of the Senior Executive Service and other federal mangers, is looking for sweeping changes to the government's human resources organization and practice.

Thrift Savings Share Prices

Thrift Savings Share Prices as of July 29, 2020.

Esper calls out DOD’s lax security culture

In a July 20 memo to all DOD personnel, Secretary Mark Esper reminded staff that unclassified information is not publicly releasable until it is approved for release.

Terms of USPS loan deal raise eyebrows

The U.S. Postal Service’s agreement with the Treasury Department for $10 billion loan provided for in the CARES Act includes USPS handing over negotiated agreements with its top customers.

Senators propose labor-management task forces on COVID policiies

A group of Senate Democrats is proposing legislation to create labor-management task forces inside government to review pandemic-related workforce policies.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office located in Silicon Valley BY Sundry Photography Shutterstock ID: 1590456970

Union pleads for USCIS funding as furloughs loom

The immigration agency is seeking $1.2 billion to keep employees working through an anticipated financial shortfall it links to the pandemic.

Programmer at work (REDPIXEL.PL/

AI commission floats idea of digital service academy

The National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence has suggested establishing a national digital service academy to train technical talent.

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Time to reinvent federal telework, lawmaker says

With the dramatic changes affecting the federal workforce since the outbreak of COVID-19, it’s time to re-evaluate telework, Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) says.

By Mark Van Scyoc Royalty-free stock photo ID: 285175268

Senior execs detail OPM modernization tactics

As part of a plan to revitalize federal employment, the Senior Executives Association is looking to take the government's top human resources official out of the political fray with a 5- to 8-year appointment.

coronavirus molecule (creativeneko/

Report: Rising fed COVID toll now tops 4,000 disabled, 60 dead

To date, more than 4,000 federal employees or their families have claimed disability compensation for COVID-19 contracted at work -- with around 60 more claiming death benefits, according to a new report.

man making hush gesture (G-Stock Studio/

Esper calls out DOD’s culture of insufficient operations security

In a move to tighten operations security (OPSEC) and better protect national security and the safety of warfighters, the Defense Department is reminding employees not to disclose non-public information.

shutterstock  ID: 1569360250 By Sundry Photography U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office located in downtown San Francisco;

USCIS pushes off planned furloughs

A top appropriator vows to address potential future furloughs in next COVID-related legislative package.

TSA airport screener with mask (TSA)

AFGE expands COVID hazard pay suit

American Federation of Government Employees has amended its claim for hazard pay for federal workers exposed to the coronavirus, adding plaintiffs from several new agencies.

By Mark Van Scyoc Royalty-free stock photo ID: 285175268

OPM stonewalls probe of possible civil service violations, IG says

The Inspector General of the Office of Personnel Management says the agency is not cooperating with a look at potential civil service law violations.

BLM protesters in Portland, Ore. (Diego G Diaz/

Watchdogs at DHS, Justice to probe actions against protesters

The Trump administration's use of federal law enforcement agents against protestors in Washington, D.C., and Portland, Ore., has attracted the attention of the inspectors general of the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security.

DOD photo by Senior Airman Perry Aston  11th Wing Public Affairs

House-passed NDAA expands paid leave benefit to excluded feds, bans TikTok

Title 38 employees working at the Transportation Security Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs and Federal Aviation Administration were not included in the original bill that established the benefit.

By Orhan Cam Royalty-free stock photo ID: 546416560 United States Capitol Building in Washington DC USA

Senate bill calls for online Plum Book

The measure looks to require more frequent updates of the directory of political appointees.

shutterstock  ID: 1569360250 By Sundry Photography U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) office located in downtown San Francisco;

Senators cite USCIS surplus in request to postpone furloughs

The immigration agency is now set to end FY2020 with surplus, and two Senate appropriators are asking for a pause on furloughs while Congress negotiates supplemental funding to offset 2021 shortfalls.