#SOTUgov Tweeting the State of the Union – Plus the DorobekINSIDER 7 Stories

On GovLoop Insights’ DorobekINSIDER:

  • Retaining and engaging young feds has been the drum beat in government for awhile now and will probably continue to be for the foreseeable future. But one of the main stumbling blocks for agency leaders has been the pace of government change. Millennials are quick to adopt new technologies and programs. But the government is not. So how can managers deal with that in-balance? Click here

But up front: Tonight is the annual State of the Union What does it mean for government? Join Govloop and the DorobekINSIDER on Twitter as we discuss it as it happens... just use the hashtag #SOTUgov Share your thoughts and insights. The SEVEN stories that impact your life

  1. The Office of Management and Budget is preparing for sequestration. Federal News Radio reports, OMB’s Controller Danny Werfel said hundreds of thousands of federal workers will have to take leave without pay if the government follows through on $85 billion in broad spending cuts next month. He said agencies should have informed employees last week. But agencies that actually go through with furloughs must give employees who are affected more detailed, personalized notices at least 30 days in advance. Werfel said he has not heard of that happening yet and some agencies would make immediate cuts under sequestration while others might aim for gradual decreases in spending and services. He added agencies may not have a choice without reprogramming authority from Congress.
  2. Meanwhile, industry, government and union groups have come together to lobby against sequestration. GovExec reports, the new coalition of 3,500 organizations is calling for an immediate end to the threat of automatic spending cuts. The diverse coalition, sent Congress and President Obama a 72-page letter, is “bringing defense and non-defense communities together for the first time under one big tent.
  3. The President has proposed a 1% pay increase for federal employees in 2014. But the government biggest unions - AFGE, NTEU, NFFE - says it’s not enough. Federal Times reports, Obama issued a two-year pay freeze beginning in 2011 that was supposed to expire in January. But Obama and Congress agreed last year to extend the pay freeze through the end of March. Obama wants federal employees to receive a 0.5 percent pay raise, but several leading Republican lawmakers are pushing to extend the pay freeze further — possibly as far as through 2015.
  4. Cutting Saturday mail service means job cuts for the Postal Service. Federal Times reports, the U.S. Postal Service’s plan could erase the equivalent of some 35,000 full-time jobs, according to an internal agency document obtained by Federal Times. That figure is higher than the one officials cited last week
  5. Federal News Radio reports, Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has released a draft of the "Suspend Act." It would centralize suspension-and-debarment activities under a new board within the General Services Administration. It would disband the suspension and debarment offices at civilian agencies. Critics of today's decentralized system say it's inconsistent. Each agency treats contractors suspected of fraud, waste or abuse differently.
  6. Secretary of State John Kerry is about to embark on his first international trip as the Secretary. The Associated Press says the former Massachusetts senator and 2004 presidential candidate is likely to embark on his first trip as secretary to Europe and the Middle East in the last week of February. The exact itinerary has yet to be determined, but Kerry is expected in several European capitals and Israel, the Palestinian territories and possibly Egypt, according to the diplomats.
  7. And on GovLoop, have you registered for our DorobekINSIDER Live BYOD panel? It’s next Wednesday February 20th at noon. Register here.

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