• The Government Accountability Office was on the job in December, issuing an emphatic ruling that the National Weather Service could not legally issue its workers disposable cups, plates and utensils on the job. Such items are "personal," GAO declared, even though most NWS facilities are in remote locations, staffed by two-person shifts that almost force employees to eat on the premises.
"You can't run out" and "grab a burger," one employee said. Nonetheless, after a lengthy deliberative process, GAO said its decision is final. [Washington Post, 12-30-2014]
• In a November ruling, France's minister of housing and minister of ecology jointly announced further streamlining of law books, removing bulky, out-of-date regulations. Among the rescissions, beginning Dec. 1, is the ban on installing toilets in kitchens. [The Local (Paris), 11-12-2014]