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SPOTLIGHT

1. EPA:

Top-job vacancies proliferate with no end in sight

U.S. EPA is on the verge of having more vacancies than Senate-confirmed officials in its top jobs. The departures of two veteran EPA leaders will leave eight of the agency's 14 key political posts vacant. Most of those empty seats have nominees pending in the Senate, but the slow pace of confirmations means it could be a while before the agency is operating at full strength again -- if it happens at all before President Obama's term ends.

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