Impact of the Obama transition on OPM

  • If you look at the OPM organization chart today, you’ll see a lot of vacancies, including Deputy Director, General Counsel, Chief of Staff and Office of Congressional Relations Director.
  • The new President, via his Chief of Staff, has ordered that federal agencies may not propose or finalize a regulation unless it has been approved by an Obama administration appointed agency head, according to  OPM’s current director, Michael Hager, was appointed by former President Bush.  The order also asks “agency officials to consider extending for 60 days the implementation period of all final rules that appeared in the Federal Register but have yet to go into effect. The extension would include reopening the notice and comment period for 30 days.”
  • also reports that President Obama’s anticipated appointee for the OPM Directorship, John Berry, is a likely “champion” of extending FEHB Program coverage to domestic partners of federal and postal employees. This goal is shared by Sen. Joe Lieberman (I Conn.) who chairs the Senate committee with oversight responsibility for the FEHB Program.