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Search Tags: FECA
Disabled federal workers with dependents would be among the hardest hit by proposed changes to federal workers' compensation benefits, according to an analysis by the Government Accountability Office. The Labor Department has proposed setting a uniform level of compensation — 70 percent of the pre-injury salary — regardless of dependents and further reducing benefits to 50 percent when employees reach retirement age. But in its report which simulated those proposed changes, GAO raised concerns about the effects on beneficiaries.
Greg Kutz is director of Forensic Audits and Investigations at the Government Accountability Office.
The federal workers' compensation program has long targeted by agency inspectors general, who have cited the program's lack of oversight and susceptibility to improper payments Some members of Congress also argue the program's benefit structure, which hasn't been meaningfully updated since the mid-1970s, has led to widespread inefficiencies.
In a marathon series of votes Tuesday, the Senate considered more than a dozen amendments to a postal reform bill, approving a provision to limit all federal agencies' spending on conferences, but voting down an amendment expanding the federal workers' compensation program. Lawmakers also rejected an amendment that would have required retirement-eligible USPS employees to retire without a buyout payment. The Senate will resume voting on amendments Wednesday at 2 p.m. before voting on a final version of the 21st Century Postal Service Act.
The National Treasury Employees Union has denounced a Senate bill reforming the Postal Service because it would also reduce benefits under the federal workers' compensation program.
The House has approved bipartisan legislation reforming the Federal Employees Compensation Act. The bill streamlines the claims process and expands benefits.
If enacted, H.R. 2465 would make several changes to the Federal Employees' Compensation Act, including allowing assistants and nurses to certify disabilities.
This week on FEDtalk, host Debra Roth is joined by Jon Adler, President of the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, to hear about their annual meeting and current legislative efforts on the Hill.
The Government Accountability Office is accepting anonymous reports of workers' compensation abuses by federal employees as part of an investigation into fraud in the Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA).
Postal workers have been collecting workers' comp after retirement. A bill introduced by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) would put an end to it.