Federal scientists crying foul over DATA Act’s conference restrictions

A group of federal scientists is concerned that proposed restrictions on federal employees attending conferences could put scientific research behind the curve.

The Assembly of Scientistsáwroteáto the two top senators on the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee last week, arguing that theáDigital Accountability and Transparency (DATA) Actáwould likely lead to a "decline in the productivity, creativity, morale, recruitment and retention" of many of the government's top scientists.

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Post conference scandals, agencies struggle to find balance

Originally posted on Federal News Radio by Jason Miller

Agencies are spending tens of millions of dollars less on travel and conferences today after repeated scandals came to light in 2012.

Some in Congress want to know what more can be done to ensure agencies will not go back to abusing the system in the future. At the same time, lawmakers also want to make sure agencies are not missing out on important opportunities that conferences provide.

Members of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee are asking agency officials and inspector generals for help achieve the right balance.

Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.), chairman of the committee, said agencies must be good shepherds of their funding, but not overlook the benefits that come from conferences.

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