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SAVE Award finalists announced

Dec. 19, 2012 - 03:49PM   |  
By MARKIE HARWOOD   |   Comments

Four employees with suggestions to move communications online and to save on agency transportation costs are finalists for the 2012 SAVE Award.

The Securing Americans Value and Efficiency Award, created in 2009, recognizes a federal employee whose idea is selected in public voting online as the top idea to improve government performance and save money.

The finalists, announced this week by acting Office of Management and Budget Director Jeffrey Zients:

• Laurie Dempsey recommends that her agency, Customs and Border Protection, post a required weekly bulletin online at The bulletin lists all imported items that have completed inspection and can be hundreds of pages long. Currently, Customs ports across the country print the bulletin and post it in the customs house. Posting the data online would save paper, reduce costs, and make it easier for the public to find out what items have been inspected without having to visit the facility in person, Dempsey said.

• Angela Leroux, Internal Revenue Service, recommends that agencies streamline their fleets of buses that shuttle employees from one government office to another for work purposes. Agencies should instead encourage the use of conference and video calls, or provide metro cards to those who need to travel, she said.

• James Szender, Interior Department, proposes using digital equipment for hearing and meeting transcripts instead of hiring a court reporter, since using digital transcription is less expensive than contracting with a certified court reporter to attend, record and transcribe proceedings.

• Frederick Winter, Education Department, proposes that employees who receive public transit benefits shift from regular transit fare to the reduced senior fare as soon as they are eligible. In the Washington, D.C. area, this change would lower the cost of the employee’s travel by 50 percent, with no loss in the benefits for the employee.

To choose a favorite idea, vote at

The winner will present his or her idea to the president in the Oval Office, and other proposals will be directed to agencies for potential action or inclusion in the president’s budget request, Zients said.

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