What do government buyouts have in common with sex education as it was not practiced back in the day? Short answer:
Nobody is getting much (information) because the people who have the know-how don’t want to explain when. Or how! Either that or they’ve been told by a higher power not to broadcast buyout data. Instead, feds, like curious kids of the 1950s, have to pick the buyout news up from the street. Or around the proverbial water-cooler.
At one time, until recently, buyout information was readily available. Agencies were anxious to publicize the payouts as a way to show they were trimming the payroll and cutting costs. It’s a lot cheaper to pay an employee $25,000 before deductions than to keep him or her on the payroll, at double, triple or more salary for another year.
But that was then. For some reason, many agencies that are offering buyouts are keeping them as quiet as possible. This has led to wishful-thinking rumors in many agencies about buyouts that may or may never happen. That said, this is what we are picking up on the street, so far:
NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center announced buyouts last week for 274 people over a dozen organizational divisions. A round of buyouts was announced yesterday at GSFC. It is for 274 people, spread over 12 organizational divisions. Word is that people in targeted positions will receive emails inviting them to fill out an application. People selected for the buyout will have to leave between December 30 and February 8, 2014.
Workers tell us that the U.S. Attorney’s Offices have just concluded a major buyout, including both attorney’s and support staff.
An FBI staffer says the word is that a slew of buyout letters went out recently, limited to headquarters’ division.
John Doe (probably not his real name) says: Defense Intelligence Agency offered VERA/VSIP (buyouts and early-retirements) in October. Employees who take them must be gone by Jan. 31. The goal was to get 300 to walk; rumor is that about 220 took the offer made to GS-15 and below. “I am told another offer was made to SES level employees and they must be out by April,” the reader says. “Probably will be another VERA/VSIP in spring or summer. I will be leaving. Had enough fun.” — J.D.
Given the budget mess Congress has created — furloughs, shutdowns and the start up of round two of sequestration — agencies that are planning buyouts should be giving employees a heads up, so they can plan accordingly.
Until they do, we’ll keep you posted on rumors and official announcements, along with the occasional Big Foot sighting.
Bill would ensure blue-collar feds get 1 percent pay raise in January A new bill introduced this week by Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pa.) would ensure blue- collar federal employees receive the same scheduled pay increase in January as General Schedule employees. White-collar GS employees are due to get a 1 percent pay raise in January, under a plan announced in August by President Barack Obama, who has authority to set GS pay levels. However, pay raises for wage-grade or hourly employees require separate legislation. With no action by Congress, pay for these employees would remain flat.
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