Federal Managers Association
- FMA RESPONDS TO DEFENSE DEPARTMENT’S ANNOUNCEMENT OF ELEVEN DAYS OF FURLOUGHS - May 16, 2013
DOD civilian employee can expect eleven days at the most of leave without pay starting July 8, 2013.
Alexandria, VA – In a memo to Department of Defense (DOD) leaders dated May 14, 2013, Secretary Charles Hagel announced the department will furlough civilian employees for at least eleven days. DOD faced deep budgetary shortfalls during FY13, which drove the necessity of furloughs. Furlough days will occur weekly starting on July 8, and run through the end of FY13 in September.
Before a group of civilian DOD employees on May 14, Secretary Charles Hagel announced, despite departmental efforts to forgo furloughs, it is necessary to furlough civilian employees in order to comply with across-the-board department cuts as mandated by the sequester. While initial speculation was there would be twenty-two furlough days, due to DOD efforts to reduce spending through cutting back on training and maintenance, the number of days was reduced. With some exceptions, civilian defense employees will receive furlough notices between May 28 and June 5.
Upon hearing the news of furloughs, FMA National President Patricia Niehaus remarked, “While better than the initial estimate of twenty-two days of furloughs, I am disappointed DOD has not been awarded needed flexibility to avoid furloughs altogether. These cuts in personnel severely impact our nation’s military readiness, at home and abroad, as well as the livelihoods’ of the men and women who support our armed forces on a daily basis.”
President Niehaus further commented, “FMA is pleased DOD made exceptions for naval shipyards due to the costly affects of delays in maintenance work on nuclear vessels. However, it is discouraging that exceptions cannot be made for working capital fund (WCF) employees. FMA wrote Secretary Hagel last month stating there is no need to furlough these employees as their work is already funded. WCF activities are self-sustaining and all costs of operations are covered by contractually funded manufacturing orders already received. No annual appropriations are required or received to cover annual operating costs.
“I encourage Members of Congress and leaders within DOD to afford the department funding flexibility that accurately reflects the needs of the department and its personnel.”