MSPB continues long slog through 30,000 furlough appeals

Thursday - 8/22/2013, 5:16pm EDT

The Merit Systems Protection Board has received more than 30,000 furlough appeals as of Aug. 21 — 98 percent of those are from civilian employees of the Department of Defense.

According to a post on the MSPB website, the board has docketed 16,571 of the 30,000-plus furlough appeals it has received to date. The board will continue docketing the appeals — entering the claims in its system to wait for action — and consolidating them, where appropriate, with the aim of adjudicating them as efficiently as possible.

"MSPB expects to have most furlough appeals docketed shortly after Labor Day, and anticipates beginning the adjudication process with respect to DoD furlough appeals shortly thereafter," the post said.

Earlier in the month, MSPB revealed that it had put a hold on processing DoD claims, as it was trying to get ahead of the flood of appeals.

"We were receiving hundreds of furlough appeals daily," MSPB Chairwoman Susan Tsui Grundmann told Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Emily Kopp on Aug. 6. "Now it's more like 1,500 to 2,000. The number of appeals has quite literally doubled within days."

In a typical year, MSPB processes 6,000-7,000 cases, covering a variety of issues. The board will continue to process the 5,000, non-furlough appeals it has received in areas that are appealable to the MSPB.

The board has sent out acknowledgement notices to docketed, furlough-related appeals made by DoD employees, with the aim of consolidating and adjudicating similar claims together. The board won't be able to start doing that until it has completed almost all of the docketing.

MSPB is asking for people's patience as it works through the large number of appeals.

"Because of the volume of these appeals, we will not be able to begin adjudication of all cases at once, so if you become aware of others whose furlough appeals are being adjudicated, that does not mean that your appeal has been overlooked. At the moment, no decisions have been made on any request to consolidate cases or on any motions for class appeal," the latest website posting said.

RELATED LINKS:

MSPB delays processing DoD furlough appeals

Want to appeal a furlough with the MSPB? Get in line