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The First ‘Paid Vacation Days’ Notices Go Out!

From CNN’s Money.com:

First furlough notices go out

By Jennifer Liberto | March 5, 2013

WASHINGTON – The first furlough notices for government employees have gone out.

The sky has officially fallen!

The Army sent letters on Feb. 28 and March 1 to unions warning that employees at the Aberdeen Proving Ground in Gunpowder, Md., as well as the Corps of Engineers in Walla Walla, Wash., will be forced to stay at home without pay one day each week from April 22 through Sept. 21.

Translation: A 20% pay cut for 5 months. Employees will stay at home on either a Monday or Friday. Not everybody may get to choose their days, because supervisors have to ensure that at least half the staff is available on both days.

Translation: At worst these employees will get 22 paid ‘long weekends.’ The federal government has never not paid any federal worker for their furloughed days. Never.

Which is a minor detail that our one party news media refuses to report.

Employees won’t be able to use sick leave or vacation to collect pay on furlough days. That’s true for all federal worker furloughs, according to the Office of Personnel Management.

President Obama signed an order Friday, which set in motion $85 billion of cuts from federal budgets this fiscal year. Many of the 2.1 million federal workers will have to go on unpaid furloughs over the next few months to hit that target by September.

By the way, Mr. Obama did not have to sign this order. Nobody forced him to sign it.

"Those who think the sequestration debate is just another game of Washington brinksmanship are sadly mistaken," said William R. Dougan, president of the National Federation of Federal Employees. "This is not a game. Real people will be hurt, people whose only role in this debate was choosing to serve their country."

Where do we have to go to be "hurt" by 22 extra vacation days?

Notices are first sent to federal workers’ unions, who will negotiate how and when various agencies will implement their furloughs.

Thank goodness for unions. Or these poor ‘workers’ might have to get vacation days they had not properly planned for.

The 800,000-strong civilian workers at the Defense Department are among the worst hit. Many of these employees will have to give up 22 days of work without pay…

None of these people will end up losing once cent of their pay. They are just getting a very nice 22 extra days of vacation, courtesy of the US taxpayer.

Other agencies are also expected to start notifying their unions and employees of impending furloughs. Employees at non-defense agencies are expected to face fewer furlough days. For example, Internal Revenue Service employees have been told their furloughs would not last more than 7 days…

Just imagine how steamed these poor IRS workers are going to be when they realize they were cheated out of another two weeks of paid vacation time.

This article was posted by Steve on Tuesday, March 5th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

4 Responses to “The First ‘Paid Vacation Days’ Notices Go Out!”

  1. OTA Mom says:

    Just curious… won’t they be eligible for some part-time unemployment benefits. Back in the early 90’s when I got cut back to half-time at my work, unemployment took care of the rest of the paycheck.

  2. canary says:

    New OMB Memo halts and slows down Furloughs and Sequesters

    Federal Manager’s Daily Report – Mar 5, 2013

    OMB Calls on Agencies to Allow Pre-Decisional Involvement With Furloughs

    Agencies must allow employees’ exclusive labor representatives pre-decisional involvement with regard to any planned personnel actions to reduce federal civilian workforce costs, OMB has said in a memo covering agency responsibilities in the face of the sequester’s automatic budget cuts of around 9 percent for most federal agencies.

    According to the memo, M-13-05, in instances in which agencies are considering potential furloughs, they have a duty to notify exclusive employee representatives and if requested, bargain over any negotiable impact and implementation proposals the union may submit, unless the matter of furloughs is already covered by a collective bargaining agreement.

    New Free Download Explains Sequester

    Go to http://www.fedweek.com/HFI to download The Five W’s of Sequestration and forward to your coworkers.

    New Contracts Are Justifiable if They Prevent Future Costs

    Sequestration is going to impact federal contracting and agencies should ensure that any contract actions are both cost-effective and minimize negative impacts on the agency’s mission to the extent practicable, but in general, new contracts should not be entered into unless failing to do so would result in greater costs in the future,
    according to the OMB memo.

    Otherwise, it said agencies should only exercise options where they support high-priority initiatives, and may also consider de-scoping or terminating for convenience contracts that are no longer affordable within the funds available for fiscal 2013, should no other options exist to reduce contracting costs in these instances.

    Further, agencies should take all appropriate steps to minimize to the extent practicable the impact on small businesses of reduced contracting activities, OMB said.

    Calls for Increased Scrutiny of New Hires, Awards

    The memo also directs agency heads to increase scrutiny over hiring new personnel, and over issuing discretionary monetary awards to employees (which should only be done if legally required), and incurring obligations for new training, conferences, and travel including agency-paid travel for non-agency personnel).

    Further, agency heads must ensure their agencies have risk management strategies and internal controls in place that provide heightened scrutiny of certain types of activities funded from sequestered accounts, OMB said.

    It said agencies also must ensure appropriate controls are in place to prevent the increased use of contractors to perform work due to any restrictions on hiring.

    It’s unbelievable the Federal Forests and Federal Pest Rearing Farms would be hiring new employees. Most likely illegals are getting these new jobs. What will the unions do?

  3. captstubby says:

    White House cancels tours over sequester cuts, as lawmakers call decision political

    March 05, 2013
    Sorry, Washington-bound spring-breakers. Your White House tours have been canceled.

    The Obama administration announced Tuesday that it will cancel all tours starting this weekend, due to sequester cuts. The move prompted swift condemnation from Republican lawmakers, who described the decision as the latest attempt to make the sequester seem worse than it is.

    “It’s politically motivated,” Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., told Fox News. “It seems childish — take my ball and go home.”

    Rep. Ted Poe, R-Texas, declared in a statement that “the people have been banned from the people’s house.”

    The announcement is the latest from the administration about the impact of the cuts that went into effect last Friday. Congressional staffers received a terse email saying White House tours would be canceled effective this Saturday.

    The email cited “staffing reductions” from the sequester.

    “Unfortunately, we will not be able to reschedule affected tours,” the notice said. “We very much regret having to take this action, particularly during the popular Spring touring season.”

    white house news brief;
    “we just want to remind the American Public that this is Our Goverment, not yours.”

  4. Curiosity says:

    The unions may end up messing things up.

    My customer (an Air Force research site) was saying the unions are trying to get four days on, four off, four on, two off or something (I heard this last week). Except, that would force the union employees to be furloughed on a federal holiday on I think several occasions, meaning they would not get holiday pay. Where there are no unions, they prefer just all Fridays, because there are no federal holidays on Friday between here and then. The pay is the same, but the workload is not.

    The forced furloughs are even more bizarre for us: due to the nature of the lab I work for, the gov’t personnel bring in funds from places besides their normal allocation from Congress. They are having a hard time filling their civil service slots. So, they have a surplus of money and a deficit on filled slots creating an even larger surplus on their books (which they are trying to spend on contractors, but it isn’t all obligated yet) – but they will be forcibly furloughed with threats on making up the work other days or working from home. And several of the civil service scientists I work with do work extra from home with neither overtime nor compensation time – they just like research.

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