Illinois farmer Jacob Hermes uses a combine to harvest his winter wheat crop. Seth Perlman/AP
It’s looking more likely that the Agriculture Department will not have to furlough any employees this fiscal year.
Senate appropriators have approved the department’s request to shift funds within the Rural Development division to avoid furloughing about 4,800 employees because of sequestration, according to an aide. House lawmakers have not yet responded but a decision could come as early as today or Wednesday, Jennifer Hing, a spokeswoman for the majority on the Appropriations Committee, said by email.
Appropriators have until Thursday to approve or reject Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s April 23 request to use special limited budget flexibility — what’s known as interchange transfer authority — to cover salary shortfalls in Rural Development in fiscal 2013. Continue reading “Agriculture Close To Avoiding Furloughs”
Air traffic controllers will be among those furloughed. Mike Stewart/AP file photo
This report has been updated.
Across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration are having have serious implications for federal workers, as mandatory unpaid furloughs planned for hundreds of thousands of employees begin to take effect. We have compiled a list of possible agency-by-agency plans and effects. We will update the list as more information becomes available. Please use the comment section below to let us know if you have additional information about your agency.
Agriculture Department: The department will not need to furlough food safety inspectors, due to the continuing resolution bill signed March 26. An email sent by a senior official on April 24 to employees at the Farm Service Agency said that the stop-gap funding bill passed by Congress would prevent furloughs at the agency. Still, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told a House panel on April 18 that budget cuts would mean a “high probability” of furloughs for employees the Rural Development division.
Air Force: The Washington Post reported that employees in combat zones, non-appropriated funds employees, and foreign nationals would be excepted from furloughs. The Post also said that further exceptions would be allowed for “safety of life or property.” An Air Force spokeswoman told Government Executive that all Air Force civilian police, security guards and firefighters would be subject to furlough “except at installations where the manning level is under 25 percent.” Continue reading “Furlough Watch: Agency-by-Agency Impacts of Sequestration”