The Month in Media
"From all the misguided rhetoric, you'd think all federal employees are bureaucrats or paper pushers. But the truth is the federal workforce's bottom-line purpose is to keep America running and to ensure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense and promote the general welfare so that we, all of us, regardless of our gender, age, race, ethnicity or sexual orientation, can form the perfect union that our Founding Fathers envisioned."
Federal Employees Deserve the Nation's Gratitude, GovExec, May 4
In May, the media covered President Tony Reardon's views on agency-funding bills pending in Congress as well as legislation aimed at the federal workforce. To celebrate Public Service Recognition Week, Reardon wrote a column thanking federal employees for the valuable work they do.
• NTEU fights on Capitol Hill for the rights of IRS and CBP employees. Read the clips»
• National President Tony Reardon thanks federal employees during Public Service Recognition Week. Read the clips »
• As the 2017 appropriations process continues, NTEU fights for higher funding at represented agencies. Read the clips »
GOP Representatives Pass Series of Bills to Curb IRS Power. (Chief-Leader, subscription required)
In the days after the April 18 tax-filing deadline, House Republicans introduced and passed, mostly along party lines, a slew of bills regulating and curbing the powers of the Internal Revenue Service. Though President Obama opposed them, he threatened to veto just one. ... Rep. (Patrick) Meehan (R-Pa.) cited the same figures that the National Treasury Employees Union, which represents IRS workers, has used in recent weeks to call for better agency funding.
... "This clearly proves that investing in personnel pays off for taxpayers who need and deserve to get tax help over the phone," NTEU President Tony Reardon said in a statement. "Unfortunately, the call-answer rate will fall back below 50 percent once the temporary employees are let go."
... NTEU issued a statement to Congress on April 15 condemning each proposal, writing, "NTEU believes all of these bills would weaken IRS's ability to carry out its taxpayer service and enforcement mission, and undermine efforts to retain dedicated and experienced employees."
New Bill Would Give 30K Feds Enhanced Retirement Benefits. (Government Executive)
Nearly 30,000 federal employees would receive enhanced retirement benefits under a bill introduced by two Democratic senators on Thursday. ... Tony Reardon, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, said in a letter to Booker that IRS enforcement officers deal with "threats, assaults, and in some cases, gunfire."
A 2014 report from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration found the auditors had responded to 8,200 threats against IRS employees between fiscal years 2011 and 2013. "This bill would recognize the dangers revenue officers face each and every day in carrying out their duties and provide them with the same civil service retirement status and benefits that other federal law enforcement officers already receive," Reardon wrote.
Is Customs and Border Protection Foregoing Billions in Fees? (Government Executive)
Customs and Border Protection, which works not only to keep terrorists out of the United States but to fund government by collecting import fees, may be leaving billions of dollars on the table annually.
... "Lack of sufficient focus and resources not only costs the U.S. Treasury in terms of customs duties and revenue loss, but also costs American companies in terms of lost business to unlawful imports," said National Treasury Employees Union National President Tony Reardon in testimony submitted to a Senate Finance Committee hearing Wednesday on implementation of the 2015 Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act.
"Chronic staffing shortages, inequitable compensation and ‘lack of mission focus' are big reasons why experienced CBP commercial operations professionals are quitting or preparing to leave."
The Week in Washington. (Cyberfeds, subscription required)
Appropriations: The House Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee approved its draft appropriations bill.
... The IRS would be particularly hard hit, with a reduction of $236 million. Before the vote, Tony Reardon, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, called on appropriators to boost funding for the IRS, in order to reverse the loss of personnel and resources the agency has experienced during the past few years.
Noting that the IRS has lost 15,000 employees since 2010, Reardon said "further reducing the IRS budget will continue to degrade its already impaired ability to provide taxpayers with the assistance they need and fairly enforce the tax laws enacted by Congress."
Border Patrol Officials Fighting Low Morale in the RGV Sector. (The Brownsville (Texas) Herald)
RIO GRANDE VALLEY- Low morale and lack of funding continue to be pressing issues for federal agents tasked with protecting the border, according to a recent survey, but local officials are working across the aisle to sway future results.
... Last month, Tony Reardon, head of the National Treasury Employees Union, told a congressional panel CBP urgently needs more resources to hire more staff and strengthen border and economic security.
The union represents 25,000 CBP employees nationwide. "Many CBP employees are forced to put in long hours of overtime and accept assignments far from home, which damages morale," Reardon said at the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Border and Maritime Security.
Federal Employees Deserve the Nation's Gratitude. (Government Executive)
Here's a quick quiz: Who protects investors from insider trading? Who blocks contraband, drugs and terrorists from entering this country? Who collects 93 percent of all federal revenue and nabs identity thieves and tax cheats? Who cares for America's great wilderness and cultural treasures? Who makes sure the medicines you take are safe and work as advertised?
Federal employees do all of those things, of course. During Public Service Recognition Week, let's recognize and appreciate all that federal employees do for this country and the value they add to our lives every day.
(Column by President Tony Reardon; May 4)
Government Lags in Making Interns Employees. (Bloomberg BNA)
The federal government needs to ensure that more agency interns become full-time employees, particularly for in-demand occupations, analysts told Bloomberg BNA in recent interviews. ...
At least one source of potential criticism of the Pathways Programsâ€”the National Treasury Employees Union, which filed an amicus brief with the MSPB as part of the 2010 effort to end the FCIPâ€”doesn't have a problem at this time with the newer programs.
"NTEU hasn't heard of any issues with the Pathways Programs but we will continue to monitor them," NTEU President Tony Reardon told Bloomberg BNA in an e-mail.
"It's worth noting that the federal government hasn't been hiring much of late due to budget cuts," Reardon added.
Outstanding Feds Named Finalists for Service to America Medals. (Government Executive)
The nonprofit Partnership for Public Service on Sunday named 32 federal employees as Service to America Medal finalists for their accomplishments related to issues of critical national importance, including defense and security, environmental protection, public health and safety.
... The eventual recipients will be chosen by a committee that includes Time Warner Inc. Chairman and CEO Jeffrey Bewkes; Chief Legal Officer and Secretary of Procter and Gamble Deborah Majoras; the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation President Larry Kramer; National Treasury Employees Union National President Tony Reardon; Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis.; Rep. Mark Takano, D-Calif.; and other leaders from government, academia, the private sector and the philanthropic sector.