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Good to Know…Week of June 28, 2010

ALTERNATIVE ENERGY

“Most Solar Town in America” Will Use 85% Solar Energy

It has been just over a year since Skyline Solar unveiled its low-cost, high-efficiency High Gain Solar Arrays (HGS). And today, just a month after being fast-tracked through U.S. Commerce Department’s Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) green-tech patent application process, Skyline announced its latest high-profile project: an 80 kilowatt solar plant that will power 85% of Nipton, California. That’s the highest percentage of solar electricity used in any town in the U.S.

To read this article, go to: FastCompany.com

JOB NEWS

Diversity and Student Hiring Next on OPM’s List

In recent months, the Office of Personnel Management rolled out a major hiring reform effort, which included eliminating knowledge, skills and abilities essays in favor of resumes and cover letters. But on Wednesday, Director John Berry showed little sign of resting.

To read this article, go to: GovExec.com

HR Execs Call for More Flexibility in Hiring

Current competitive hiring rules impose too many requirements on how agencies must advertise job vacancies and evaluate applicants, said HR officials from the Defense, Education, Justice and Agriculture departments. Excepted service hiring authorities, such as the controversial Federal Career Intern Program, allow agencies more leeway to tailor their hiring processes to their needs.

To read this article, go to: Federal Times

Message from Agencies: Don’t Work Here!

Imagine walking into a car dealership with checkbook in hand, only to be waved off by dealership employees telling you how the cars are made of subpar materials and through mismanaged manufacturing.

That’s essentially what happens every time the topic of federal hiring comes up among our readers. In the latest case, blogger Steve Kelman wrote about the job prospects of new Harvard grads, some of who are considering entering public service.

To read this article, go to: GCN

TECH NEWS

‘Identity Ecosystem’ to Replace Passwords, Draft Strategy Suggests

Imagine signing on to your computer, logging onto a secure Web site or handling a sensitive document electronically–all without needing a user name or password.

The draft national strategy for building a new “identity ecosystem” that the Obama administration released June 25 would accomplish that, according to its developers. The ecosystem would base authentication on trusted digital identities instead.

To read this article, go to: GCN

Clamp Down on U.K. Government Websites to Save Millions

The Minister for the Cabinet Office, Francis Maude, has today pledged to scrap hundreds of unnecessary and expensive government websites and slash the cost of the remaining sites to save millions of pounds.

In autumn 2006 the Government committed to dramatically culling the number of websites. In March 2010 there were still 794 websites; now, the Government has identified 820.

To read this article, go to: Cabinet Office, U.K.

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