Sequestration’s Looming Furlough Implications

by Stephanie Sullivan, Consultant

Federal employees and contractors have been waiting on bated breath about the impact of looming furloughs…but it looks like the wait is nearly over. Federal agencies have already begun doling out memos with grim announcements that resemble one released by the Department of Justice, “DOJ proposes to furlough you no earlier than 30 days from receipt of this notice.” You can read the full memo here. The National Labor Relations Board is another agency that has already released a formal furlough announcement. FedNewsRadio has even launched their own Guide to Agency Furloughs to track how each specific agency is impacted by the sequester.

Several large agencies don’t anticipate releasing formal notices until mid-March, which includes parts of DOD (which is also expected to implement furloughs beginning the 3rd week of April) & DHS. The government is mandated to provide a 30 day notice requirement to employees, and according to the DOJ memo furloughs are anticipated to take place as early as April 21, 2013 and run through September 30, 2013 not exceed 14 workdays.

In a Commissioner’s Broadcast released last week to all SSA employees, the agency cited alternative measures it would take to help reduce the impact of sequestration on its employees. These measures include “making some very difficult decisions and taking necessary steps to mitigate our budget risks this fiscal year — including steps such as restricting hiring, limiting overtime availability, delaying purchases, and limiting agency travel. We will also be restricting our spending to mission critical activities. By taking these actions, we are hopeful the funds available to us will allow us to operate without furloughs.”

The majority of government personnel are still somewhat in the dark about how many furlough days they could face, but according to a recent Washington Post article 22 days is the highest number expected by parts of DOD and DOT. Pay will be reduced proportionately for each pay period in which an employee is furloughed.

For more resources on how to work through sequestration and protect your federal sales, download immixGroup’s new Guide to Sequestration.

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