Issues you should keep in mind. Here’s a summary update with links to details.

There is interest in Congress for privatizing Air Traffic Controllers.  There are economic, safety and policy implications of such action that you should know about.  Read this article from background to the conclusion.  You really need to know and understand the issues surrounding this discussion.

https://www.americanprogress.org/issues/economy/report/2015/05/05/112406/4-essential-questions-about-air-traffic-control-privatization/

“Amid a barrage of pressure from across the spectrum of postal stakeholders, the U.S. Postal Service has indefinitely postponed dozens of facility closures scheduled for later this year.”  Your USPS delivery may be safe for now.

http://www.govexec.com/management/2015/05/usps-suspends-remaining-facility-closures-scheduled-2015/113743/?oref=relatedstories

The U.S. roadway system is reported to have 61,000 bridges in need of repair. “There is a modicum of good news in the numbers compiled from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Bridge Inventory database: 2,000 bridges that made the 2013 list were repaired.”  What about the rest and where are they?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/trafficandcommuting/with-61000-bridges-needing-repair-states-await-action-on-capitol-hill/2015/04/01/3bf842ce-d860-11e4-8103-fa84725dbf9d_story.html

The Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015 was passed by Congress and signed by the President on May 27, 2015.  What’s in it?  Here’s the text. Followed by a summary for your reading pleasure.  Is there enough money to repair highways and bridges nationwide and monitor/inspect rail tracks and rail grade crossings for safety issues nationwide, for example?

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/hr2353/text#

https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/2353

Speaking of transportation, Positive Train Control (PTC) was recently in the news due a tragic passenger train derailment.  As you may know by now, PTC is not new.  I have heard of PTC for years from Federal Railroad Administration presentations and updates. Here’s information from FRA on what PTC is:

http://www.fra.dot.gov/Page/P0152

Congress passed a $3.8 trillion 2016 budget.  Here is a summary of what you can expect. There will be an appropriations fight in Congress in the coming months as federal agencies’ budgets must be approved by October 1, 2015.

http://www.businessinsider.com/afp-us-republicans-pass-3.8-trillion-2016-budget-2015-5

Here’s the text.  This was kind of hard to find and probably less interesting to read.  I wanted to provide a nonpartisan view which is difficult at this time as you may expect.

https://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/114/sconres11/text

Have you had enough yet?  Well there is still a crisis in leadership in the federal government, TSA has its issues on passenger screenings, data breaches at the IRS and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and  live anthrax shipments to name a few.

And oh by the way, in the midst of all this activity, there is an expected new wave of federal retirements.  Who do we have left now with experience and energy to handle national issues that impact our lives every day?  Remember morale among federal employees is at an all time low.

And no wonder federal employee morale is low.  Right out of the starting gate, there are  2016 presidential candidates who state that there should be a federal workforce pay freeze and that there are too many federal employees and too many bureaucrats.

Do they mean that all federal employees are bureaucrats?  Say it isn’t so.  I hope I wasn’t one of those! Another candidate said that we should cut the number of federal employees then raise the pay of the ones remaining.   Who wants to be the remaining federal workers?  Raise your hands.

http://www.govexec.com/oversight/2015/06/four-year-pay-freeze-workforce-cuts-and-other-ideas-new-presidential-contenders/114415/

Something to think about.  Comments anyone?

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About djaubey

I am a proud thirty-year federal employee and civil servant. Now retired. As a creative writer (both traditional and innovative), I provide a fresh perspective with a sound foundation in all my work. I am a researcher, writer and speaker with a love of the written word and in search of the truth.
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3 Responses to Issues you should keep in mind. Here’s a summary update with links to details.

  1. audendj says:

    A very informative summary. The views of those 2016 presidential candidates is disgusting but nothing new. Kind of sad. You think they would’ve learned from the last government shutdown.

    • djaubey says:

      Yes, it is sad. Federal employees are easy targets. Now they need champions; defenders. The negative conversation about them has gone on far too long.

  2. djaubey says:

    Thank you for your comment.

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