Should federal workers pay the price when the government closes?

posted at 2:41 pm on March 18, 2014 by Dustin Siggins

The government closed due to snowfall, yesterday. Again.

As someone who grew up in New Hampshire and shoveled roofs, put a roof on a house when it was zero degrees Fahrenheit (working for my father’s roofing business during a break in school), went to high school in 40 degrees below zero, and did it all while walking uphill both ways in bare feet, I tend to find it frustrating when the government closes for snow. While yesterday’s was justifiable — eight inches of snow fell in D.C. proper, and more than that in surrounding areas — it does bring to mind whether OPM should not give federal employees what are essentially paid vacation days.

According to the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) website, the federal government has closed five times in the last three months, including including four times since January 1, 2014. There have also been four days with two-hour delays. This is a total of six days of federal employees staying home, receiving full pay and not getting vacation days docked against them.

Unlike teachers, federal employees don’t have to “make up” days. And according to the Congressional Budget Office in 2012, most federal employees made far more than their private-sector counterparts, between pay and benefits, from 2005 to 2010. (Heritage labor expert James Sherk estimated the difference at 30 to 40 percent in his 2010 report.)

But should federal employees bear the consequences of what they are not responsible for? OPM makes its decisions at the top, and those decisions work their way down the chain by agency. Your average federal employee is not making the final decisions, in other words. And, certainly, the D.C. infrastructure makes snow-laden travel difficult, especially with so many drivers lacking any knowledge as to how to drive in snow.

On the other hand, days off are days off.

This is going to leave me open to a lot of criticism from hundreds of friends and acquaintances who work for the federal government — I live a few miles south of D.C. — but as a taxpayer, I come down on the side that says days off are days off. Barring extraordinary circumstances, the federal government should stay open. Employees should be given the option of staying home, but vacation days or pay should be docked.

Sometimes, working for the federal government has its benefits — better compensation, and a near-impossibility to be fired, for example –but there are definite downsides, such as the government shutdown last fall that left many of my friends and acquaintances temporarily without a paycheck, though they did receive back pay.

Which leads to another question: Should a Congress-initiated shutdown leave federal employees without pay? A friend who heads up a series of publications — and, as a private-sector worker, had to be at work at 8 a.m. yesterday — pointed out that federal employees take jobs knowing they have a political component, much in the same way they know firing is difficult. And he’s right.

Of course, any Member of Congress who proposed such a “radical” change in policy would be pilloried, especially since there was a partial federal pay-freeze in place for three years. However, that pay freeze pales next to what the average American has faced. According to one study reported by The New York Times last August, median income for American households was six percent below the level it was at when the recession started nearly six years before the report was published. So, again, a partial pay freeze for federal employees is better off than the losses faced by the population at large.

 

 

 

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government shutdown last fall that left many of my friends and acquaintances temporarily without a paycheck, though they did receive back pay.

You are incorrect. Unlike previous shutdowns, no back pay was authorized last year.

Aplombed on March 18, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Only if the IRS doesn’t collect income taxes for those days.

blammm on March 18, 2014 at 2:47 PM

Unlike previous shutdowns, no back pay was authorized last year.

Aplombed on March 18, 2014 at 2:46 PM

Nope.

blammm on March 18, 2014 at 2:48 PM

…why not?…they vote for these idiots!

KOOLAID2 on March 18, 2014 at 2:48 PM

Apologies. Those furloughed after 01 October 13 were authorized back pay. Those furloughed throughout FY13 did not.

Aplombed on March 18, 2014 at 2:49 PM

Yes.

Not working.

No pay.

Or use vacation pay.

“So, again, a partial pay freeze for federal employees is better off than the losses faced by the population at large.”

Government shuts down? So should the payroll. And that should include our illustrious members of CONgress and all who work on Capitol Hill.

In fact, no budget passed, no pay is how it should be too.

hawkeye54 on March 18, 2014 at 2:49 PM

Federal workers should not be paid when they don’t work … which, for many of them means that they should never be paid.

The idea that the government shuts down (parts of it) for any reason and the feral workers still get paid is infuriating.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on March 18, 2014 at 2:49 PM

Hell yes.

In fact, 90% of them (not including military) should be fired and forced to find their way in the private sector.

Midas on March 18, 2014 at 2:54 PM

Unfortunately, no, shouldn’t be paid. Unless they use vacation time for those days.

It sucks, but that’s how it should go.

NotThatBillFord on March 18, 2014 at 2:55 PM

A friend who heads up a series of publications — and, as a private-sector worker, had to be at work at 8 a.m. yesterday

Your friend was one of very few. And the number of accidents including two big ones on I-95 not too far from you pretty much proves that the road conditions were dangerous even without plows driving on the wrong side of the road.

The way I look at it, there is a public safety aspect to this as the regions major employer (with many private-sector companies following OPM’s lead) makes a decision to shut down or not. The ice storm of 2010 where OPM dithered and put the entire workforce on the roads just as the storm hit shows the consequences of not being realistic about weather conditions.

But as to pay for snow days…. I’m sure there are provisions in the law that preclude docking pay of federal employees when they are told to stay home.

Happy Nomad on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

When a factory shuts down because of money issues, the workers don’t get paid. Why should federal employees be any different?

Monkeytoe on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

No ticky No laundry

Wade on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Should federal workers pay the price when the government closes?

Yes.
But – (many/most maybe all) federal workers have a special charge code for their timecards to be used when their primary work location is closed for something like weather – or they can choose to use vacation time – or make up the time.
And, many of them have the opportunity to take work home with them and telecommute if their facility/building/base is expected to be closed the next day.

dentarthurdent on March 18, 2014 at 2:58 PM

No work. No pay. That’s been the deal my entire working life; there is no good reason it should be any different for those who are paid with funds taken from me that I earned through the sweat of my brow. But then, I also think the government should be cut in half. As a start. And then cut in half again. Sure there are a lot of good people who work for government. There are a lot of bad people too; and taken as a whole, our government has become a parasite.

SteveThomas on March 18, 2014 at 2:58 PM

It’s pretty annoying when you’re a federal contractor and you get told you can’t come to work but you do have to burn a vacation day while your customer just gets a freebie.

Spade on March 18, 2014 at 3:00 PM

When a factory shuts down because of money issues, the workers don’t get paid. Why should federal employees be any different?

Monkeytoe on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

They shouldn’t be. But, hey, its only taxpayer money being fairly redistributed, and this is a reliable dem voting bloc so there is that to consider.

hawkeye54 on March 18, 2014 at 3:00 PM

I can’t help thinking that we are better off with some federal employees at home rather than at work creating evil. If we can avoid paying them as well, that’s icing on the cake.

Surellin on March 18, 2014 at 3:02 PM

Does a one-legged duck swim in circles?

BarefootinTN on March 18, 2014 at 3:05 PM

To play devil’s advocate here I think folks on the board are confusing two different things. The government, and government workers.
There are all different kinds of GS employees for all different kinds of agencies the vast majority of people in the US have never hear of. How many people outside of the Navy had even heard of NCIS before the TV show? I think everyone can agree that having GS take paid vacation for a snow day seems about right, also side note Military folks yesterday do not have to take leave for snow days.
What the issue at hand seems to be should GS folks have to take the hit if politicians can’t come to an understanding. I am going to go out on a limb here and say no not really. Why should other be held responsible for the dumb actions of others (gov shut down, sequesters the list goes on). Yes a lot of folks take GS positions for their security, however a lot of others do so to continue on with a give agency say DOD for example. IMHO they shouldn’t have to bare the financial burden if some congressman wants to make a point.
There is a lot of bloat in the government, and we need to get our spending under control. However you could shut the WHOLE government down for a full year and the US would STILL be running a deficient due to entitlements. We need to deal with the real problem and not just nibble at the edges, but then again that’s not going to happen with Obama in the white house.

falcaner on March 18, 2014 at 3:06 PM

I live in an area where many in my church are federal workers (including many with the NSA [duh duh duuhhhh]). Last summer, they made an announcement that many of the church members would be experience unpaid days off because of the sequester, and to be mindful of their needs because of that burden. It was hard to look around at others with their Samsung Galaxy Notes, 2-3 cars, single family homes, and my work issued iPhone 4, single car, rented apartment, and not think “you’ve got more money than me, what about my needs?”

I have very limited compassion for those that choose to go into federal work. They have, on average, better benefits as Dustin outlines, including overall more stable jobs. They get paid days off because of the snow yesterday, and I worked a full day on St Patrick’s Day when my office is 80% Irish. I don’t get “federal holidays” off, etc.

End Rant

Effay5 on March 18, 2014 at 3:07 PM

If they are so unnecessary we can do without them during a snow storm FIRE THEM.

Let these government “workers” go get REAL jobs. FIRE THEM ALL.

Warner Todd Huston on March 18, 2014 at 3:07 PM

When a factory shuts down because of money issues, the workers don’t get paid. Why should federal employees be any different?

Monkeytoe on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Normally I would agree with this, but I work for a private business. We shut down a number of times this year due to heavy snowfall (the governor of our state actually issued an emergency order that the roads be closed at one point) and no one’s pay got docked.

It is one thing to dock pay during a shutdown, but it’s another thing when they do it due to genuinely dangerous weather conditions.

The way I look at it, there is a public safety aspect to this as the regions major employer (with many private-sector companies following OPM’s lead) makes a decision to shut down or not. The ice storm of 2010 where OPM dithered and put the entire workforce on the roads just as the storm hit shows the consequences of not being realistic about weather conditions.

Happy Nomad on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

This. This happened to a friend of mine. He nearly wrecked his car. I’d argue that federal workers ought to be given a choice to just accept no pay for a snow day or spend a day off to get paid at the very least.

Doomberg on March 18, 2014 at 3:12 PM

Federal workers should all be minimum wage, part-timers at 29 hours per week. If someone is willing to work for less, the taxpayers should be able to hire them.

monalisa on March 18, 2014 at 3:12 PM

When 17% of the government was shut down last year, the Democrats and the media screamed how the sky was falling. Since they can’t blame the weather shutdowns on the Republicans, closing the entire federal government for the day due to snow isn’t a problem. When Democrats and public employees close their parts of the government, like when teachers go on strike, or they declare a snow day, it’s never a disaster.

Meanwhile, my local municipality, controlled by Democrats and public employee unions, enforces the snow emergency ordinances against private property owners, but never makes the county, state, or themselves shovel their own sidewalks.

rokemronnie on March 18, 2014 at 3:15 PM

OT:

Russia’s most wanted rebel, Chechen separatist Doku Umarov, has died, according to Kavkaz Center, the main website of Russia’s Islamic militants.
“The leadership of the Caucasus Emirate officially announces the martyrdom of Emir Dokku Abu Usman,” the site said, using Umarov’s Arabised nom-de guerre. It gave no details of how he had died, writes Helen Womack in Moscow.

kcewa on March 18, 2014 at 3:17 PM

In fact, 90% of them (not including military) should be fired and forced to find their way in the private sector.

Midas on March 18, 2014 at 2:54 PM

The problem with that idea is that there are no jobs in the private sector. Obama put a lid on job growth in 2009 and has kept job creation stagnant or reduced since then. But the fired workers should look at it as a blessing now that they aren’t “job-locked” anymore. They can pursue their happiness knowing Obama has their backs by giving them free Medicaid, Section 8 housing, food stamps and the list goes on and on and on and on and on….

timberline on March 18, 2014 at 3:18 PM

What the issue at hand seems to be should GS folks have to take the hit if politicians can’t come to an understanding. I am going to go out on a limb here and say no not really. Why should other be held responsible for the dumb actions of others (gov shut down, sequesters the list goes on).

So why have a shutdown at all? If they are gonna get paid eventually they should have to show up and work.

myiq2xu on March 18, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Your article above keeps saying that the government closed. It seems it closed 6 times this year already. I work for the Federal Government and I’ve worked every work day so far this year.

Perhaps you’re talking about a specific federal government location?

But your assertion that the government has closed six times is wrong. Certain offices may have closed, but the entire government has not.

Baggi on March 18, 2014 at 3:26 PM

but never makes the county, state, or themselves shovel their own sidewalks.

rokemronnie on March 18, 2014 at 3:15 PM

Think about why.

The reason is here: Its really dumb to give a fine to yourself. Next time it snows, don’t shovel your driveway. Then, assign a $50 fine for not doing so. Then take a $50 bill from your left pocket, and then put it right back in.

2 things did not occur here.

1) The driveway is still not shoveled, and

2) you didn’t make any money.

BobMbx on March 18, 2014 at 3:27 PM

Of course they should feel the pain. Why should they be exempt from losing money because the government closes down? Why should those in private industry be the only ones who have to suffer when their companies close, for a day, for a week, for a month or permanently, many times because of those in the government. It is long over due for government employees to “feel the pain”. Then they might have a better idea of what it is like on the outside.

RZuendt on March 18, 2014 at 3:27 PM

No work, no pay. If they need the money, let them use vacation time.

Actually, for employees of the ATF, IRS, and EPA (to name a few), I’d pay them if the DIDN’T show up for work.

SPCOlympics on March 18, 2014 at 3:27 PM

So why have a shutdown at all? If they are gonna get paid eventually they should have to show up and work.

Most of us did show up and work without pay, until we got back pay. It’s only those deemed “non essential” that get days off. And then Congress has to vote in order to pay them for the time they never showed up to begin with.

My opinion, they shouldn’t be paid for time they got to sit on their ass at home.

Baggi on March 18, 2014 at 3:28 PM

The problem with that idea is that there are no jobs in the private sector.

“We’re gonna shrink our bloated government, but we’re not gonna lay anyone off until they find another job.”

myiq2xu on March 18, 2014 at 3:28 PM

Let them work it off on Federal holidays.

DAT60A3 on March 18, 2014 at 3:30 PM

It’s only those deemed “non essential” that get days off.

Why not just keep the essential employees and let all the others go? In private business, you are either an essential employee or you are related to/sleeping with the boss.

myiq2xu on March 18, 2014 at 3:31 PM

And according to the Congressional Budget Office in 2012, most federal employees made far more than their private-sector counterparts, between pay and benefits, from 2005 to 2010. (Heritage labor expert James Sherk estimated the difference at 30 to 40 percent in his 2010 report.)

Non-military federal workers should have their salaries and benefits frozen for at least five years to allow the private labor market to catch up. There’s no reason for these lavish packages.

slickwillie2001 on March 18, 2014 at 3:35 PM

I live in Virginia now and am from the Midwest originally. When I first moved here, I thought it was a joke that DC would shut down for a few inches of snow. After living here for a period of time (I work for a private non-profit, not the federal government), I totall support the shutdown of the federal government on heavy snow days. First, commuting is impossible. The people doing the plowing have no idea what they are doing. And you are trying to jam over a million people, all commuting from up to an hour and a half a way, into a 10 square mile district in a matter of a couple of hours. If the plowing was up to par, it could be a different story. Second, the amount of resources wasted on snow days from all of the wrecks that occur becuase so many people have no clue how to drive in the snow out here more than makes up for the amount of time federal employees have off. I still remember one time when they were late in releasing people for heavy snow–it took me over three hours to drive 13 miles. I had friends who were in their car for nine hours to drive less than 20 miles. While those conditions might be understandable in China (or apparently Atlanta), it is not something that the commuters should deal with. Third, the feds do have a policy for telecommuting on days when the government is closed. Theoretically, federal employees who are telework ready are supposed to be working on days that the federal offices is closed (according to a friend of mine who is a federal employee and telework ready). Whether that occurs or not is a different story and basically anytime there is a threat of snow, those workers have the option to telework.

Actually, the telework scenario is the issue that I could complain about for hours. If you want to attack something, you should attack the federal employees for “teleworking.” The other major is issue is the employees getting to work 4 or 4.5 days each week and having every Friday or every other Friday off. Those are the kinds of benefits that private sector counterparts could NEVER expect. Individuals doing the same jobs in the private sector are not only underpaid, but they also have to work many more hours than the federal employee. So while I do somewhat understand your frustration about snow days, I think the place to really attack are the glaringly ridiculous benefits that federal employees get regarding their actual work schedules.

Conservative in NOVA on March 18, 2014 at 3:36 PM

I’m a Fed Gov employee here in Almost Heaven. Got 8 in. of snow here, too.

I’m designated “essential,” so I have to make every effort to show up to work.

During the recent furlough, I was still working (because I was “essential”), even though I was not doing “essential” type work- I merely had the designation.
Those who were furloughed were not worried- they knew they would get back pay.

Royal Fizzbin on March 18, 2014 at 3:41 PM

I’m with you, on the side of the taxpayers. Take the good with the bad and quit sticking it to us so that they can have it both ways.

MJBrutus on March 18, 2014 at 3:43 PM

When I don’t show up for work I don’t get paid. If I can tax the federal workers to pay me for time off I am all for paying Gov’t workers for their time off. Otherwise NOT

rjoco1 on March 18, 2014 at 3:46 PM

According to the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) website, the federal government has closed five times in the last three months, including including four times since January 1, 2014. There have also been four days with two-hour delays. This is a total of six days of federal employees staying home, receiving full pay and not getting vacation days docked against them.

WTF are you talking about, sonny? Do you know? My paycheck comes from DOD and none of that happened. I am a Federal employee, for DOD, and a Guardsmen. Two paychecks, no “shutdowns” since October, no days off.

Maybe your friends and acquaintances work for Harry Reid or something.

M240H on March 18, 2014 at 3:47 PM

Oh, wait, you just mean DC. Emily Litella says nevermind. She also says we’re all better off when DC shuts down.

M240H on March 18, 2014 at 3:50 PM

In my previous position in the healthcare industry, (which I lost 2 months ago as a direct consequence of obaka non-care), if it snowed, we either worked from home or took a PTO day. When we have a forecast of snow, we all packed up what we needed to work from home.

ladyingray on March 18, 2014 at 3:52 PM

No! There are plenty of hotels in town if they don’t want to or can’t go home. Otherwise they should be forced to use a “personal”(if they have them) day or vacation day or sick day. I’ve worked in Chicago metro and that has always been the norm. I’ve only “slept” at the office once, but it was not totally uncommon at the companies I worked at. The point being you are expected to be there, you should be there or pay some price — mostly it was getting up extra early and cleaning the driveway.

KenInIL on March 18, 2014 at 3:57 PM

Same for me as ladyingray. At our office, we can work remotely from home, or do PTO if for whatever reason we can’t.

RblDiver on March 18, 2014 at 3:57 PM

At the government office I work in, snow days only mean telework, i.e. work from home. This includes government employees and contractors. So, it is not a ‘vacation day’. At other offices it may be different, but not where I work.

zoyclem on March 18, 2014 at 4:38 PM

I too am a federal employee. Not GS, but FS. Whenever a post that I am assigned to has a “snow” day, a notice goes out that Liberal Leave has been authorized for non-essential personnel. That means you can stay home but will be charged a ‘leave’ day. If you are essential (me), you are expected to come to work.
As for those GS in DC not deserving of their saleries, I won’t argue it. But some of us are in specialized fields that actually do warrent our salaries.. Not many though… I am currently posted in Europe – a nice change of pace – and at the moment supporting an upcoming “event” in The Hague next week…, and I’m the only person in my field supporting this. So I am expected to actually perform..
IMHO most federal employees are overpaid and have too much job security… But not all of us… Well.., There is the “job security” thing.. That’s true..

Al Hall on March 18, 2014 at 4:44 PM

At the government office I work in, snow days only mean telework, i.e. work from home. This includes government employees and contractors. So, it is not a ‘vacation day’. At other offices it may be different, but not where I work.

zoyclem on March 18, 2014 at 4:38 PM

That is correct. Those who have a telework agreement in place, which is an increasing trend in government, must continue to report for duty from home. This is also a trend in private industry.

Time to find another whipping boy, eh, fellas?

manwithblackhat on March 18, 2014 at 4:44 PM

Actually, the telework scenario is the issue that I could complain about for hours. If you want to attack something, you should attack the federal employees for “teleworking.”
Conservative in NOVA on March 18, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Well…I’m not a fed, just a contractor, and I tend to get much more work done at home…no breaks and no lunch. Plus, I have to document everything I did during the day. So, what’s the complaint?

zoyclem on March 18, 2014 at 4:48 PM

Hmmm, well, I still have to pay my taxes even when the government is shut down. Screw ‘em

john1schn on March 18, 2014 at 4:55 PM

Federal workers should all be minimum wage, part-timers at 29 hours per week. If someone is willing to work for less, the taxpayers should be able to hire them.

monalisa on March 18, 2014 at 3:12 PM

Um…. just as an example, do you really want public policy on nuclear arms, social security, or diplomacy to be crafted by part-timers? Does that include the military? Yes, there is an entrenched bureaucracy but REALLY? Should civil servants (as a group) really be viewed as less worth to society than the manager of a fast food restaurant?

There are alot of good people who work for the government no matter what you think in your warped little pathetic mind.

Happy Nomad on March 18, 2014 at 5:30 PM

Yes, they should have their pay docked. I’ve told my Congressman this for years. Then they wouldn’t push to close down as much.

As it is the number of Federal holidays is ridiculous. And they are notorious for 2 hour going away lunches for which they never make up the time!

Falcon46 on March 18, 2014 at 5:47 PM

As it is the number of Federal holidays is ridiculous.

Agreed. Christmas Day, New Years’ Day, Memorial Day, 4th of July, Labor Day, and Thanksgiving Day should be enough for us in govt service.
I’ve worked most of the holidays anyway, so that’s no big deal.

And they are notorious for 2 hour going away lunches for which they never make up the time!

Falcon46 on March 18, 2014 at 5:47 PM

I’m missing out on this 2 hr lunch action. Guess that’s what I get for not working in DC.

Royal Fizzbin on March 18, 2014 at 6:28 PM

But as to pay for snow days…. I’m sure there are provisions in the law that preclude docking pay of federal employees when they are told to stay home.
Happy Nomad on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Yes. Admin leave should be banished as well as partying on govt time, ie promotions and retirements.

AH_C on March 18, 2014 at 6:40 PM

But as to pay for snow days…. I’m sure there are provisions in the law that preclude docking pay of federal employees when they are told to stay home.
Happy Nomad on March 18, 2014 at 2:56 PM

There are no provisions for that. An employee would have to be in a non-pay (AWOL) status- when all leave (AL and SL) is exhausted. Even then, in the case of snow days, DC area fed govt folks are given the time and therefore the pay.

Royal Fizzbin on March 18, 2014 at 7:28 PM

I don’t know about ALL Federal workers, but Congress & Obama work so little / have so much time off as it is they should not be paid a salaried positional wage – they should be paid by the hour. And…

Vacations should be paid for by the politicians themselves, not by the tax payers. You and I get paid a salary and must pay for our vacations out-of-pocket – our bosses or clients don’t pay for it. So why does the President force the people he works for to pay his million dollar a piece vacation tabs? He should get to use Air Force 1, Secret Service are paid by tax dollars, they should get paid for lodging and per diem, but the Obama’s hotel expenses, dining expenses, and entertainment/activities should come out-of-pocket.

easyt65 on March 18, 2014 at 7:54 PM

Um, there is a serious “Well Duh!” here.

If I work for a company and finances require the company elect to close its doors for a period of time while it gets its act together I don’t expect the company to continue to pay me for sitting on by butt doing nothing for the company. If anything I’d expect them to ask me to take a pay cut or contribute some free time to give the company a future other than the bone yard.

Whyinell is a government any different except in scale?

{^_^}

herself on March 19, 2014 at 5:34 AM

I’m a government worker …

If I travel on a holiday – I don’t get paid overtime and I don’t get “comp time” for it. I end up traveling on holidays a lot.

I have a PAY CAP that I have to deal with – which means – if I work too many overtime hours – I don’t get paid for those hours (but I still have to work them). When I’m in the Arctic, it’s dangerous and it’s 12 hour days, seven days a week. I’m usually there for a month and I don’t get paid for at least 7 days of that work because I hit my “cap” at about the three week point. I still have to work – I still have to do dangerous shit and I’m still away from my family.

Oh by the way – I work for the DoD and my work involves protecting your asses back here and collecting information vital to national defense and keeping our troops safe – and arming them with the information they need to defeat the enemies that are trying to KILL YOU. What’s YOUR job? Tell me how dangerous it is and tell me about all those “overtime” hours you work and don’t get paid for.

I was in the Straight of Hormuz recently – for a month – being harassed by Iranian Navy who could have captured me at any time and taken me off to Evin Prison for torture. Tell me about your job and how I shouldn’t get a “snow day” or two here and there when I’m back home.

I spend a lot of time off the coast of North Korea. Every time that little D*ck acts up – I have to pack up and go over there and do my job. Again … pay cap.

You dweebs act like all Government employees sit behind a desk and do DMV type shit. Newsflash … the CIA guys at Camp Chapman in Afghanistan (and I been there too!) are government employees and they’re out there fighting the Taliban.

There’s a lot of us in “Harm’s Way” … unlike you f*ckers … who sit around in a “safe” job stocking the shelves at Walmart – or working behind a desk on Wall Street.

None of you have balls as big as mine. So Eff-Off

HondaV65 on March 19, 2014 at 8:21 AM

Actually, the telework scenario is the issue that I could complain about for hours. If you want to attack something, you should attack the federal employees for “teleworking.” The other major is issue is the employees getting to work 4 or 4.5 days each week and having every Friday or every other Friday off. Those are the kinds of benefits that private sector counterparts could NEVER expect …

Conservative in NOVA on March 18, 2014 at 3:36 PM

What is described here is called an “alternate work schedule,” or “AWS.” In some agencies, federal employees may opt to work nine-hour days for nine days in a two-week pay period, thus working eighty hours in that time while getting a designated day off. This allows them to handle personal matters without taking leave, and still work a full schedule. Since many take Mondays and Fridays off, this offsets the extent of traffic for Monday morning and Friday evening. If you’ve ever lived and/or worked in DC, you know it doesn’t take much to tie up traffic throughout the city. I can spend more than an hour trying to take public transit for six miles just because the President wants to make a pizza run that evening.

As for “teleworking,” I don’t know what the issue is that’s being raised here. An increasing number of private companies are doing the same thing, and their shareholders aren’t complaining about it.

manwithblackhat on March 19, 2014 at 8:48 AM

Government Contractors have to take the day as paid time off, unless they are approved to telecommute (which is highly unlikely in the last few years). So, why shouldn’t Government employees? (Unless you want to start treating them like military personnel, who work up to 24/7 for their paycheck, with no overtime ever.)

(And, yes, working to get your 80 hours in over the pay period is a legitimate way to not suffer from the “day off”.)

GWB on March 19, 2014 at 11:44 AM