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Federal Employees News Digest : May 6, 2013
FedCentral • Job Listings • Government Contacts • Links to Discount Sites for Feds • Chart of the Month • And more! Visit FedCentral now! http://federaldaily.com/pages/fedcentral.aspx your federal employee resource! May 6, 2013 Vol. 62, No. 40 5 Visit us on the Internet at www.FederalDaily.com Jones said HUD planned on proceeding with the changes “in a way that is sensitive to the needs and concerns of HUD’s staff.” See the FPM plan at: http://portal.hud.gov/ hudportal/HUD?src=/transforming_hud/small_ office_project; see the MHP plan at: http://portal. hud.gov/hudportal/HUD?src=/transforming_ hud/multifamily_transformation. Senators ask president to remedy VA backlog Sixty-seven senators signed a letter to President Obama asking him to take action to reduce the current backlog of veterans’ disability claims. Lawmakers who signed the April 26 let- ter reflected a political cross-section of the Senate, and included a broad collection of Democrats and Republican alike. Sens. Bob Casey (D-Pa.) and Dean Heller (R-Nev.) authored the letter. According to a press statement from Heller’s office, the aver- age veterans disability claim currently takes more than 300 days to be resolved. “After a decade of war, and despite the [Department of Veterans Affairs’] efforts to modernize, more than 600,000 veterans are still stuck in the VA’s disability claims backlog,” the senators wrote. “Solving this problem is critical for veterans of all generations. We need direct and public involvement from you to establish a clear plan to end the backlog once and for all.” According to the letter, veterans in some areas of the country wait much longer than 300 days. “While the average wait time for first time disability claims currently ranges between 316 and 327 days, veterans in certain parts of the country are waiting even longer – 681 days in Reno, 642 in New York, 625 in Pittsburgh, 619 in Los Angeles, 612 in Indianapolis, 586 in Houston, and 510 in Philadelphia,” the let- ter stated. “In the worst cases, veterans have waited and continue to wait 800 days, 900 days, and even more than 1,000 days for a disability claims decision from the VA.” Paul Rieckhoff, CEO and founder of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, thanked Senate leaders for working to address the back- log, and said that “the growing impatience over the VA disabilities backlog is one of the few genuine bipartisan issues in Washington today.” See the letter at: www.heller.senate.gov/pub- lic/index.cfm/2013/4/casey-heller-lead-biparti- san-letter-urging-president-obama-to-become- personally-involved-in-effort-to-reduce-va- claims-backlog. ••• In Brief Furloughs of air traffic controllers dropped Air traffic controller furloughs ended almost as soon as they started after Congress quickly approved a bill to halt them in the wake of air traffic backups at the nation’s airports. The legislation gave the Transportation Department the flexibility to transfer funds into the Federal Aviation Administration’s operations budget to prevent essential employees—air traffic controllers in particular—from being furloughed. The bill, introduced in the Senate April 25, passed there without amendment by unanimous consent. The House then passed the bill the fol- lowing day by a vote of 361-41 under suspension of the rules that requires a two-thirds majority. “The nation’s air traffic controllers and other continued from page 3 continued on page 8
April 29, 2013
May 13, 2013