Shows & Panels
- The 2014 Big Picture on Cyber Security
- AFCEA Answers
- Ask the CIO
- Building the Hybrid Cloud
- Connected Government: How to Build and Procure Network Services for the Future
- Continuing Diagnostics and Mitigation: Discussion of Progress and Next Steps
- Federal Executive Forum
- Federal Tech Talk
- The Intersection: Where Technology Meets Transformation
- Maximizing ROI Through Data Center Consolidation
- Moving to the Cloud. What's the best approach for me
- Navigating Tough Choices in Government Cloud Computing
- The New Generation of Database
- Satellite Communications: Acquiring SATCOM in Tight Times
- Targeting Advanced Threats: Proven Methods from Detection through Remediation
- Transformative Technology: Desktop Virtualization in Government
- The Truth About IT Opex and Software Defined Networking
- Value of Health IT
Shows & Panels
$hrinking buyouts: An offer you can't refuse?
Thursday - 10/4/2012, 2:00am EDT
Size, sometimes, counts. Big time!
But the trend, if there is one, seems to be in the other direction. As in smaller, not bigger buyouts. Consider...
Federal buyouts come in many flavors.
If you work for most federal agencies there is the take-it- or-leave it, one-size-fits-all $25,000 buyout. You agree to take regular or early retirement, and you get a lump-sum payment minus deductions. Depending on your salary, state taxes and deductions the final payment works out to around $18,000, more or less.
If you work for some profit-making federal agencies that are financed in whole or part by fees (from banks or other operations they oversee), buyouts can be tailored and made more generous than the typical $25K goodbye. The same is reportedly true for certain intelligence agencies that can write their own buyout checks.
But for a large chunk of the federal workforcem there are (or have been) a variety of buyouts. For example would you prefer:
- A buyout equal to six months pay.
- The standard $25,000 buyout.
- A buyout, paid in two annual installments, worth
- Or, a buyout of $15,000 to be paid over two years.
The USPS position toward buyouts has been never-say-never.
Over the years, the USPS, still the second largest federal agency (after Defense) has eliminated hundreds of thousands of workers. At last count, there were between 530,000 and 540,000 postal workers. But that was just before the USPS offered $15,000 buyouts (the smallest in the series) to tens of thousands of workers, clerks, drivers, mechanics and others — represented by the giant American Postal Workers Union. That's a lot of people. In most federal agencies, unions "represent" many — sometimes the majority of — workers who are not dues-paying members. By contrast, in the USPS, most of the people represented by the APWU and the NALC are also members of the union.
During the 1990s, the USPS offered buyouts equal to as much as six-months salary. Back then that wasn't all that much for the majority of its workforce, which is made up of clerks, letter carriers and mail handlers. But some higher-paid employees took the half-year pay. In many cases, it turned out to be the wrong employees, and the service had to hire new people to replace them.
Congress took a very dim view of the situation, and postal officials issued a "Never Again" pledge. Never again lasted until the summer of 2009 when a new round of (then) $20,000 buyouts were offered. Two of every 10 postmasters (about 4,100 people) took the buyouts. By the time buyouts were offered to members of the mail-handler craft, they had shrunk to $15,000 — the current level — and roughly 3,000 took the money and retired.
NEARLY USELESS FACTOID
By Jack Moore
Today is National Taco Day.
MORE FROM FEDERAL NEWS RADIO
Obama, Romney define role
of government during presidential debate
President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney squared off in a nationally televised debate Wednesday night, attempting to sway voters by delineating their differences on the major issues facing the U.S.
SSA to close offices earlier to cut overtime
Starting Nov. 19, Social Security Administration offices around the country will close 30 minutes early. Additionally, starting in 2013, offices will close at 12 p.m. on Wednesdays.
further delay - and eventual end - to STOCK Act reporting requirement
The controversial provision to an insider trading law that would require the online posting of senior federal employees' financial disclosure forms has twice been delayed by Congress and even put on hold by a district court judge.
figuring out how to deal with budget woes
A Federal News Radio exclusive survey of chief acquisition officers and senior procurement executives showed most are not preparing for budget cuts or sequestration. These acquisition executives also say they are protecting money for training acquisition workers. OFPP Administrator Joe Jordan said his office is helping agencies make better decisions about how and where to spend money.