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by
Bryan Preston

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October 7, 2013 - 8:44 am

The Washington Examiner reports the latest outrage in Shutdown Theatre:

The Obama administration quietly changed its furlough guidance Friday to allow government employees who are also union representatives to return to work and receive a regular paycheck during the government shutdown.

On the fifth day of the government shutdown the House unanimously passed a a bill approving back pay for 800,000 furloughed federal workers, a rare moment of bipartisan unity, even as House Republicans and Democrats continued their bitter budget standoff.

The vast majority of those workers do not serve as union representatives and will not receive a pay check as long as the government remains shuttered. But the Office of Personnel Management Friday opened the door for some of their co-workers, those who serve as union representatives, to return to work and get their regular paycheck.

On Friday OPM issued updated guidance that provides several carefully crafted carve-outs for furloughed government workers to perform union work on official, paid time.

The new guidance says furloughed government workers can perform union work on official time if federal law allows it. For instance, the document says, if an “agency has determined that a management action taken during a shutdown is permissible because it is an excepted activity, and such action triggers union representational rights under the collective bargaining agreement.”

The guidance instructs workers to consult with the general counsel at their individual government department or agency to determine if union activity is allowed under federal law.

Neither OPM, the Office of Management and Budget nor the American Federation of Government Employees, the top federal government worker union, immediately returned requests for comment.

Big Labor nearly always wins with the Obama government. Even if senior citizens and kids camping in parks have to lose.

The directives to close some things, open other things, turn some things off and then turn them back on, send non-union rep workers home while keeping union rep workers paid throughout the shutdown, have to be coming from the one entity to which all of these various executive branch agencies answer. That’s the White House. Who in the Obama White House is orchestrating these arbitrary and capricious government actions? There has to be some office coordinating all of this, and some staff on the job of coordinating it all, and someone managing the staff who are seeing to it that it all gets done.

Who are they?

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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"The Obama administration quietly changed its furlough guidance Friday to allow government employees who are also union representatives to return to work and receive a regular paycheck during the government shutdown."

I'm just glad they're working - we taxpayers usually get stiffed by being forced to pay them NOT to work!
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
You don't think they're actually working at the work of the agency, do you?
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
I took "return to work" at face value - but you make a good point. At least they don't get to stay home & get paid - they have to get up out of bed, get dressed & get there . . . . presumably.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
You don't have to allow any "representational activity" on paid time under the Labor - Management Relations Act or any state bargaining law I'm familiar with. So, if the US allows union reps who are employees to do representational activities on paid time by operation of law or an EO it is because the US conferred a right to federal unions that private sector unions and no unions bargaining under state laws that I know of have. Many labor agreements confer some amount of paid time for shop steward level representation activities, but the only real right is for "representation" for "mutual aid and protection," the so-called Weingarten Right to say "I want my steward" before you talk with a supervisor. Since there are no represented employees working in the shutdown functions, there is no need for activities based on the right to mutual aid and protection. At bottome, the essential predicate for representation is having someone to represent and there are no working employees. Any representational issues would be a the union's institutional level and the unions have plenty of non-employee representational staff for that.

Having a little experience with how unions and Democrats work together against legislators and citizens, I suspect this is a blind for bringing in some union activist employees to use them as advisors and coordinators to determine what to shut down and how to make the Shutdown Theater more dramatic.
46 weeks ago
46 weeks ago Link To Comment
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