October 7, 2011 |
Almost as soon as he took office in 1862, Francis E. Spinner's job as U.S. treasurer began to spin out of control. Many of his employees had resigned to join the Army — just as a revolution in the country's money system was underway. He clamored for more clerks. "The work has been performed by devoting not only almost every hour of each day, (Sundays not excepted,) but many hours of night, to continuous labor beyond the endurance of most men," Spinner wrote in a report. To help pay for the Civil War ,...
May 24, 2013 |
Jonathan Turley is the Shapiro professor of public interest law at George Washington University. There were times this past week when it seemed like the 19th-century Know-Nothing Party had returned to Washington. President Obama insisted he knew nothing about major decisions in the State Department, or the Justice Department, or the Internal Revenue Service. The heads of those agencies, in turn, insisted they knew nothing about major decisions by their subordinates. It was as if the government functioned by some hidden...
December 12, 2012 |
It's no secret that federal workers are feeling worn down. They've had their salaries frozen and are at the center of a partisan debate over the value of their work. A report due out Thursday, based on the largest sample ever of the workforce of 2 million, confirms a steady decline in morale and ebbing commitment. Despite positive feedback at some agencies, job satisfaction across the government has hit its lowest point in almost a decade. Just 52.9 percent of employees at the sprawling Department...
October 30, 2011 |
Executive coaching isn't just for corporations. These days, federal agencies are seeking help developing their leaders and they are turning to contractors for expertise. Bethesda-based Catapult Technology won its latest executive coaching gig earlier this month when the Department of Homeland Security's Citizenship and Immigration Services unit awarded it a contract worth about $250,000 over three years. The company, which provides a range of information technology consulting services, will start by working with 30 of the...
October 5, 2009
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama ordered federal agencies on Monday to set a goal within 90 days for cutting their greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, the White House said, aiming to "lead by example" in fighting climate change. The new executive order, signed by the president, mandates agencies across the federal government to "measure, manage, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions toward agency-defined targets," the White House said in a statement. Other environmental measures such as reducing...
August 5, 2012 |
The government last week pushed back against contractors on how they should brace for a nearly $1 trillion cut in federal spending, arguing that mass layoff notices are unnecessary and that warnings of contract terminations are overblown. The frenzy over what's known as sequestration — an across-the-board cut set to go into effect in January — grew more intense as contractors staged a rally last week featuring industry chief executives and local politicians while Obama administration officials appeared on Capitol Hill.