NARFE NewsWatch
Apr. 22, 2014

Public Service Recognition Week, May 4-10, is almost here!
Please join the Public Employees Roundtable, of which NARFE is a member, in celebrating Public Service Recognition Week!

PSRW is a time set aside to honor the women and men who serve our nation as federal, state, county and local government employees. Throughout the country, elected officials, agency leaders, communities and public service organizations participate by issuing proclamations, hosting tribute events and highlighting stories of excellence in government service. The theme for PSRW 2014 is "Proud to Serve." There are a variety of how-to guides to encourage PSRW celebrations nationwide with little or no cost, including letter templates, sample proclamations and tips on organizing events.

NARFE's Legislative Action Center has been updated to include a Letter to the Editor template for members to complete and send to the newspapers in your local area. The "Media Guide" on the Legislative Action Center makes this easy, and adding your own content will make the LTE even more likely to be published.More

Social Security Benefits
Question: My spouse and I both worked under Social Security. He is currently receiving benefits, but I want to wait until age 70 so the delayed retirement credits will make my benefits higher. Someone told me that, when I reach my full retirement age of 66 later this year, I can apply for benefits as a spouse. Is this correct?More

Postal Service overhaul remains tenuous as Rep. Darrell Issa considers plans for new bill
The Washington Post
Rep. Darrell Issa may introduce a U.S. Postal Service overhaul bill next week that more closely tracks with a White House plan, a move that the California Republican hopes will help rally more Democrats, congressional aides say. With the clock ticking on his tenure as chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, Issa, the leading House advocate for legislation to overhaul the financially troubled agency, may introduce the bill as soon as next week, when Congress returns from its break.More

OMB: Plan for implementing security-clearance fixes coming soon
Federal News Radio
In the coming months, the federal government will release a detailed plan for implementing more than a dozen recommendations to improve the security clearance process, the Obama administration's management chief told an audience of government contractors.More

Lawmaker looks to reform agencies without hurting their employees
Government Executive
A Democratic lawmaker is pushing two pieces of legislation designed to improve agency management without hurting federal employees along the way — or at least not to the extent of alternative bills. Rep. Mike Michaud, D-Maine, recently introduced the 2014 Comprehensive Department of Veterans Affairs Performance Management and Accountability Reform Act, which would set clearer goals against which senior VA executives' job performance could be measured.More

OPM to begin survey of feds later this month
Federal News Radio
The Office of Personnel Management is preparing to take the temperature of the federal workforce. The annual survey tracking federal workers' job satisfaction across an array of factors will be sent to employees later this month, according to a memo to agency heads from OPM Director Katherine Archuleta.More

Will my TSP go down?
The stock market is up, way up, from its bottom in 2008. Are you worried about losing money in your TSP due to a pullback? One financial expert has some advice you may find comforting.More

Spring cleaning safety tips
HealthDay News via Health
While doing their spring cleaning, families will use a wide range of products that can cause accidental poisonings, an expert says. But taking appropriate precautions will reduce the risk of danger, said Earl Siegel, managing director of the drug and poison information center at Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center in Ohio.More

Air travel tips for seniors with special needs
Las Vegas Review-Journal
Question: I would like to fly my elderly parents across the country next month for my daughter’s wedding but have some concerns about the flight. My mom has trouble walking long distances and my dad has COPD and needs an oxygen tank. What airport or airline services are available to help elderly passengers?More

Childhood dreams can inspire rewarding second careers
The New York Times
Ever since Sandra Colony was a child, when she was spellbound by the glossy photographs of exotic places in the pages of National Geographic, she has been driven by the desire to explore the world. And she has. To date, she has visited 90 countries. "I knew I loved to travel as a little girl, but I certainly never knew at 68 I would be starting a career out of it," Colony said. Yet the New York City resident has done precisely that with her new venture, Personalized Odysseys.More

Lost your smartphone? Here's what you need to do
A warning for smartphone users: Experts say thefts are way up. Based on a recent survey, Consumer Reports estimates the number of stolen phones nearly doubled in the past year to 3.1 million.More