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Labor Department orders private companies with federal contracts to give employees up to seven sick days

Officials at the Labor Department Thursday ruled federal contractors – private companies who contract with the federal government like Humana, General Electric, General Dynamics, Hewlett-Packard Company, MIT, AT&T, the list goes on – are required to give employees up to seven days of sick time annually, allegedly creating a new benefit for more than 650,000 workers. The Washington Examiner has the story: In addition to the new Labor rule, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced that starting in March, it will collect new data from employers that will let it improve investigations of possible pay discrimination… The EEOC ...

Bill demands stronger protections for VA whistleblowers

Congressional plans to encourage Veterans Affairs employees to speak out against departmental abuses like waste and negligence – and shield such whistleblowers from retaliation – may soon be put to a vote. Stars and Stripes has the story: A long-stalled plan in Congress to strengthen protections for Veterans Affairs Department employees who disclose waste and misconduct – and to punish officials who retaliate against them – is poised to hitch a ride to enactment this week on the high-priority measure to head off a partial government shutdown… While the measure would continue funding most government operations only through Dec. 9, the ...

Sen. Mike Lee: Spending bill Senate just passed ‘keeps the government headed in the same direction’

Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) in a 12-minute Facebook Live video Wednesday explains why he voted against the continuing resolution, a stopgap spending bill that keeps the government operating through Dec. 9. “It just keeps the government headed in the same direction – doesn’t really change much. It can contain a few revisions so it’s not really a budget, but it is a spending bill – a spending bill that simply says ‘Keep things more or less as they are subject to few minor changes,” says Sen. Lee. Members of Congress year after year face pressure from government employees and other groups to pass such resolutions, even if it means subver...

IRS employees heading to prison for defrauding taxpayers

A number of employees at the Internal Revenue Service will spend time behind bars for accessing personal taxpayer information used to defraud people to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars, a report released Wednesday reveals. The Washington Examiner has the details: The office said IRS employee Nakisha Hall used her position to access the personal information of hundreds of taxpayers between 2008 and 2011, creating fraudulent returns on her own computer and receiving more than $550,000 in tax refunds she requested be sent in the form of debit cards. After Hall came up with the idea for the scheme, she asked four people to help her hide ...

Tax-policy expert: Tax reform needed to ‘revive the slow-growing economy’

Heritage Foundation Tax-and-Economy Research Fellow Curtis Dubay Tuesday explained why Congress must come up with a common-sense tax-reform plan that addresses our lethargic economy and gives it the jump-start it needs to get Americans working again. The Daily Signal has the commentary: Tax reform is badly needed to revive the slow-growing economy and increase job creation and wages for American families. The current tax system is a large weight holding the economy back from growing as strongly as it could, thereby suppressing opportunity for Americans at all income levels. To free the economy to grow larger, tax reform must lower marginal tax ...

Senators seeking answers in case of vet who allegedly committed suicide while on VA waiting list

 U.S. Senators Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) Tuesday requested an investigation into a report an Army veteran committed suicide when he was awaiting care for post-traumatic-stress disorder from those at a Veterans Affairs office in Colorado Springs, Colo. The department will work with the inspector general and the senators to determine what happened, agency spokesman Paul Sherbo said. The senators did not identify the soldier who killed himself but said he was 26 and had served as an Army Ranger. Gardner said he wanted to avoid a repeat of a 2014 scandal over long wait times that veterans endured to get health care, and ...

President Obama: Regulator in chief

President Obama in his almost eight years in office has upped the number of major regulations 31 percent over his predecessor George W. Bush adding more than $750 billion in overall costs to business and citizens and nearly 500 million more hours of paperwork, according to recent analysis. The Washington Examiner has the details: Businesses and conservative politicians have complained that the overwhelming burden of new federal regulations, especially in the health and financial world, has led to massive job cuts and bankruptcies. But the administration shows no sign of slowing down in the final leg of its eight years, said analyst Sam Batkins, ...

Inspector general accuses Denver-based VA of ‘gross mismanagement’

Federal investigators Wednesday accused those at a Denver, Colo.-based Veterans Affairs office of improperly overseeing construction of a VA hospital that ran over budget by millions of dollars. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch has the details: The inspector general accused the VA of “gross mismanagement” for assigning far too few engineers and project managers. [Sloan Gibson, deputy secretary of Veterans Affairs] said the department has taken responsibility for the problems and has made changes. Two weeks ago, [Fla. Republican Jeff] Miller’s committee subpoenaed documents on a separate internal VA investigation into the cost overruns. The ...

Jenny Beth Martin: Stop President Obama’s internet giveaway


Conservative congressman says IRS commissioner’s plea against impeachment a ‘charade’