Government employees should have more discretion to solve problems and not just perform set actions, Stephen Goldsmith, a professor of government at Harvard University, told the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee June 18.
The European Council published on May 31 a proposed compromise draft (.pdf) of the General Data Protection Regulation. The updated version follows an March announcement that the Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs committee reviewed more than 3000 ammendments and moves the European Union one step closer to final rules that will address personal data, consent and the right to be forgotten in the Internet economy.
Congress should establish a commission to evaluate the multi-step process for appealing a disability claim against the time it takes the system to reach a verdict, Chief Judge U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims Bruce Kasold told the House Veterans' Affairs subcommittee on disability assistance and memorial affairs in a June 18 hearing .
Intelligence community and Justice Department officials took to a rare open hearing of the House Intelligence Committee to defend surveillance programs, with National Security Agency head Gen. Keith Alexander stating that intercepted information has helped prevent more than 50 potential terrorist attacks across the globe since Sept. 11, 2001. Ten of those, he said during the June 18 hearing , "included homeland-based threats"
The Bureau of Land Management may have lost $60 million in undervalued leases of public lands to coal mining companies because it used its own land value assessors rather than the ones ordered by an Interior Department regulation, a June 11 Interior Department inspector general report (.pdf) says.
The National Security Agency doesn't collect information directly from Verizon and T-Mobile USA due to their foreign ownership ties, a June 14 Wall Street Journal report says. But that doesn't mean the NSA fails to intercept that information , the report says, as officials believe they can still capture the metadata on 99 percent of U.S. phone traffic because most calls eventually travel through networks owned by U.S. companies that have been cooperating with the NSA.
The Supreme Court ruled June 17 that states cannot require voters to provide proof of citizenship when registering to vote, but there could be a loophole that allows states to continue the fight. The 7 to 2 ruling (.pdf) rejected a 2004 Arizona law, known as Proposition 200.
Four Forest Service employees were able to rack up $13,700 in improper travel card charges without notice amid what auditors say is a manual tracking process that overwhelms travel management personnel's ability to monitor card usage.
A June 5 DHS Office of Inspector General report (.pdf) finds the National Protection and Programs Directorate's Office of Cybersecurity and Communications has not fully met its obligations to improve the security posture of the dot-gov domain.
The Homeland Security Department needs to debunk falsehoods and conspiracy theories about it more aggressively, said Doug Pinkham, president of the Public Affairs Council, at a House hearing June 14. "You can't assume just because you're right and they're wrong that people will listen to you," he told the House Homeland Security subcommittee on oversight and management efficiency.