Is this the code to future buyouts, RIFs?

Thursday - 5/8/2014, 2:00am EDT

In addition to being a big government/military town, Washington, D.C., is also a city of intrigue, plots and hidden mysteries. Sort of a less exotic Constantinople on the Potomac.

Somewhere in this city of monuments and intrigue is the key to the vault that will explain who and what crashed in Roswell, New Mexico, back in the day. Also, in which hangar at Wright-Patterson AFB in Dayton the saucer's remains are under 24/7 guard.

Also, whether you will have a job next year!

Because George Washington and so many other presidents were Masons, writers and researchers they were always looking for hidden sites, symbols and clue as to who-buried-what-where and what the grand Masonic design has in store for our future. Many of them are believed to be inside the Beltway.

Some long-time feds, concerned about their jobs, are looking at the newly minted M-14-07 memo from the top levels of government. Is it the Rosetta Stone that will explain how government works? The four-page document from the Office of Management and Budget will never be the basis for a movie or TV sitcom. But people in the know (and most people in D.C. think they know) say that the heavily-coded directive ("...the discretionary levels set by the BBA are not sufficient — both in 2015 and beyond — to accelerate economic growth...") holds the key to the future. Including whether you will have a job next year, be offered a buyout or given an extension of what you hope is a long and successful career.

M-14-07 is not an easy read. What seems obvious to one person is a mystery to others. How much, if any of it, is in code we don't know. Oh sure, some people at the White House, OMB and maybe even in Congress understand it. Maybe the gang at Langley (code talk for the CIA) too. But for most of us, it is guesswork. We know it's the White House outline for how government agencies are to operate in fiscal year 2016. But is what it says what it means? For instance, it says the budget the President will introduce next year "...should continue to build on the President's vision for growth, opportunity, and national security by reducing spending on lower priority programs in order to create room for effective investments in areas that remain critical to securing our Nation's future."

We know what it says, but what does it mean? What is the President's "vision?" And why capitalize Nation?

The document, which takes almost 10 minutes (we timed it) to read, leaves — according to one expert — "a lot of wiggle room in the HR and IT areas of government." He said it could portend buyouts "and some reductions in force," too, although he conceded they are costly and disruptive. He also said the new guidance stresses "effectiveness" in addition to efficiency.

M-14-07 says agencies should cut 2 percent from discretionary programs but leave room for increases in some cases. On our Your Turn radio program yesterday, Federal News Radio Executive Editor Jason Miller raised the possibility of RIFs in some agencies next year. He said sequestration has picked off "most of the low hanging fruit" and cuts could come next year.

At one point the annual budget guidance documents says: "New mandatory savings proposals should also accompany any new mandatory proposals that are not at least budget neutral." A long-time, nonfederal budget watcher said it was highly significant, but he declined to explain it. So want to take a crack at cracking the code? If so, here it is. Once you've figured it out, let us know, OK?


NEARLY USELESS FACTOID

Compiled by Jack Moore

In the word "almost," all of the letters are in alphabetical order. The longest word in which each of the letter are in alphabetical order is "Aegilops," the name of the genus for a type of flowering plant.

(Source: Today I Found Out)


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