Union News Archive

Today, the union requested mediation assistance from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service (FMCS) regarding our negotiations with SEC management over a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). The parties completed their formal CBA negotiating sessions last week, and this week we exchanged “Last Best Offers” on most of the articles that the parties opened for discussion last spring. Seeking mediation at FMCS is a last chance for the parties to reach agreement before taking an “impasse” (a fundamental disagreement over contract terms) to the Federal Service Impasses Panel (FSIP) for... Read more ...
Last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee released the text of all twelve funding bills for Fiscal Year (FY) 2023. Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) said it is his hope that, with the release of the bills showing the priorities of the Senate Democrats, members can take a step closer toward reaching a bipartisan compromise. As you may recall, the House of Representative passed a six-bill appropriations package the week before last (read about it here). Given the Senate Appropriations Committee has not considered these bills and the August congressional recess begins soon, it is... Read more ...
As the union and SEC management near the end of our Collective Bargaining Agreement (“CBA”) negotiations, we have received many questions from SEC employees regarding the state of our discussions regarding the future of telework at the SEC.
Since CBA bargaining began last spring, the union team has urged Chair Gensler to seize the unique opportunity this moment in time affords to move the SEC firmly into the future of work in our nation. After two and half years of everyone at the agency working remotely, with a high degree of success, we envision a future with a highly flexible SEC telework... Read more ...
After continuing to receive numerous employee questions about the use or lose leave issue, the union is providing this further update.
Employees must schedule all of their use or lose by the end of the year to avoid forfeiture, because Chair Gensler has continued to refuse to address this issue, despite the following facts:
The approximate projected balance of use or lose leave for 2022 for all bargaining unit employees is well over 300,000 hours. Obviously, this will result in a large number of employees being required to take a large amount of leave during the last several months of... Read more ...
This week, the U.S. House of Representative passed H.R. 8294, an appropriations package that included six FY 2023 spending bills. The bill, which passed by a vote of 220-207 consisted of the following bills:  Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies; Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies; Financial Services and General Government; Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies; Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies; and Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies. H.R. 8294 provides funding... Read more ...
The House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations held the second in a series of hearings on the future of the federal workforce.  Jason Miller, Deputy Director of Management at the Office of Management and Budget, and Kiran Ahuja, Director of the Office of Personnel Management, testified at the hearing.  NTEU submitted this statement noting that key to recruiting and retaining employees is for the federal government to provide employees flexible work schedules and expanded telework; better paying jobs and a strong benefits package—including strong retirement and health... Read more ...
NTEU has filed a petition for rulemaking asking the FLRA to revise its regulation regarding who may ask it for general statements of policy or guidance. During the last administration, anti-union groups that were not comprised of federal employees seized upon broad language in the regulation to request policy statements or general guidance aimed at hurting federal unions and the employees that they represent. You can view the petition here.
NTEU’s proposed revision would limit those who could request FLRA policy statements or general guidance to (1) the head of an agency; (2) the president of... Read more ...
In case you may not have heard, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) provided NTEU with notice that they will be suspending transactions and services in TSP for a few weeks beginning on May 16, 2022. During this period, TSP will work to update its database as well as add new online user features, including: the creation of a mobile app, an update to MyAccount, and 24/7 virtual assistance. FRTIB expects this transition period to last until the first week of June.
The FRTIB has assured us that your money and retirement investments will not be impacted. Any new money that you... Read more ...
By a vote of 50 to 49, the Senate confirmed Susan Tsui Grundmann to the three-member Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA), which administers the Labor-Management relations program for approximately 2.1 million non-postal federal employees and, among other things, supervises union elections, adjudicates unfair labor practice complaints, and resolves questions concerning the negotiability of bargaining proposals. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) was the only republican to vote in support of Ms. Grundmann.
Ms. Grundmann, endorsed by NTEU, is well qualified for this position and has years of... Read more ...
The union wanted to provide an update to you on the impending “use or lose” leave crisis at the SEC. This week, the union was notified by SEC Labor Relations that Chair Gensler will be taking no action to further address this issue in 2022. This is an issue that is likely to affect all SEC employees for the remainder of the year, since Chair Gensler’s current misguided policy choice will likely result in a large number of employees being required to take a massive amount of leave between now and December 31, 2022. This means that the SEC will be experiencing shortages of employees in all of... Read more ...
In the aftermath of the covid-19 pandemic, NTEU member-led band, G.O.A.T. Rodeo is reuniting to rock for a great cause: helping the people of Ukraine.
On Thursday, May 5, the G.O.A.Ts will perform at LawRocks – Washington, D.C. for Ukraine.  The event starts at 7:30 p.m. at Pearl Street Warehouse.  Ticket sales and donations will go toward the U.S. Ukraine Foundation (https://usukraine.org/).
Chapter 293 member Stacy Puente is a Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Attorney Adviser in Washington, D.C., whose alter ego moonlights as the lead vocalist and keyboardist for G.O.A.T. Rodeo. “We... Read more ...
Yesterday evening, NTEU Chapter 293 and SEC management finally reached a final agreement on the ground rules for negotiating a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) at the SEC. Today, the union named its bargaining team for those negotiations, which will commence during the week of April 25.
Last fall, the union and management both noticed each other of their intent to reopen the CBA at the SEC to make modifications. The current CBA expired in early January 2022. After more than six months of wrangling over the “ground rules” for these negotiations, and just two days before the parties... Read more ...
Yesterday, the Senate confirmed two of President Biden’s nominees to the three-member Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB or Board), Raymond Limon and Tristan Leavitt. The nominations were supported by NTEU. 
Raymond Limon is the chief human capital officer for the Interior Department with federal HR experience at the State Department and Office of Personnel Management. Tristan Leavitt is general counsel for the MSPB, where he’s also served as the agency’s acting chief executive for the last several years while the Board hasn’t had any members. 
As you may know, the MSPB lost its only... Read more ...
Senator Rick Scott
This week, Senator Rick Scott (R-FL), Chair of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, released his policy agenda for Republicans to enact should they win Senate and House majorities this fall. While Senator Scott said his agenda is separate from his work chairing the party’s campaign arm, he also said that it’s “important to tell people what we’re [going to] do.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) has declined to release a GOP agenda heading into the midterms.  According to media reports, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) plans to release his own agenda in the... Read more ...
Student Loan Program
Last October, the Department of Education ("DOE") announced sweeping changes to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness ("PSLF") Program, under which federal employees may have the remainder of their student loans forgiven completely after they have made regular payments during ten years of public service. Previously, the PSLF Program failed to deliver on its promise to ease the burden of student loan debt for almost all employees at the SEC. DOE is now running a "limited PSLF Waiver Program" under which many of those employees who did not qualify in the past will now qualify. This waiver program... Read more ...
Senate Wing
With government funding set to expire tomorrow night, February 18, 2022, the Senate passed the Continuing Resolution (CR), HR 6617, which would extend funding for FY 2022 through March 11, 2022.  President Biden is expected to sign the bill and prevent a government shutdown.  Recently, House and Senate Appropriations Committee leaders reached an agreement on top-line funding amounts and sent funding allocations to the 12 Appropriations Subcommittees, who are currently drafting their respective FY 2022 funding bills and negotiating various provisions. 
As Congress and the White House continue... Read more ...
Talk to the Hand
Last week, the White House Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment, which is co-chaired by Vice President Kamala Harris and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh, published its first report to the President, which we encourage all of you to review here. One critical recommendation is for federal agencies to recognize that, collectively, the federal government is the largest employer in the U.S., with more than 3.3 million employees.  For that reason, the Task Force concludes that federal agencies should act as a “model employer” by facilitating worker power through executive action and “... Read more ...
Recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit issued a favorable, unanimous decision in AFL-CIO v. FLRA, a case involving NTEU and other unions that protects unions’ right to bargain over many management-initiated changes to working conditions. Under the court’s decision, agencies must bargain over any management-initiated change except those having only a minor, “de minimis” impact. 
NTEU and two other unions challenged an adverse Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) decision issued on September 30, 2020, that limited labor organizations’ bargaining rights. The FLRA in this 2... Read more ...
With government funding set to expire on February 18, 2022, the House passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) that would extend funding for FY 2022 through March 11, 2022. The CR will provide additional time for Congress to negotiate a final spending agreement. To date, the House has passed 9 of the 12 appropriations bills and the Senate has not passed any. Congressional leaders agreed to the third CR this fiscal year only after getting closer to an agreement on overall spending levels. This agreement will now provide time for negotiating allocations for each of the 12 appropriations bills and a... Read more ...
Today, the White House Task Force on Worker Organizing and Empowerment, which is chaired by Vice President Kamala Harris and Labor Secretary Marty Walsh, released its first report to the President that includes over 70 recommendations to the President to promote worker organizing and collective bargaining for federal employees, as well as other public and private sector employees.  Among other things, these recommendations include ensuring agencies provide new employees with information about their union, including how to contact them; eliminating barriers that prevent union organizers from... Read more ...
SEC Chair Gary Gensler has now made it clear that he intends to pursue an aggressive, anti-employee agenda in his negotiations at the agency over SEC employees' pay, benefits and work-life programs. In the past two weeks, he has sought to cast aside over twenty years of negotiating history between the SEC and its own workforce by trying to compel the union to combine bargaining over the parties’ Compensation Agreement and the entirely separate Collective Bargaining Agreement (“CBA”). This move constitutes a transparent attempt by Mr. Gensler to increase his leverage over his own employees... Read more ...
With the SEC’s implementation of Chair Gensler’s new policy eliminating the existing COVID Admin Leave program for SEC employees with dependents, the union has received numerous inquiries from employees about the option for Bright Horizons “back-up care” to fill gaps in care for children and elders. The union received a briefing from the SEC’s Office of Human Resources on this issue yesterday. We now have the following updates for your planning purposes:
•    First, you should be aware that Bright Horizons does not accept enrollees for back-up care if they have COVID, have been exposed to... Read more ...
Chapter 293's Election Committee has provided the results of the 2021 chapter elections.
The winner of the contested election is:
Executive Board Representative, MIRO:  Sean O'Neill
The results of the uncontested elections are:
President:  Greg Gilman;
Vice President:  Lance Alworth;
Secretary:  Melissia Buckhalter-Honore;
Treasurer:  James Guigliano;
Executive Board Representative, ARO:  Tenita Thomas;
Executive Board Representative, BRO:  Dan Barry;
Executive Board Representative, CHRO:  Andrew O'Brien;
Executive Board Representative, DRO:  Joni Marks;
Executive Board Representative, FWRO... Read more ...
Each Labor Day in the modern era, we have barbecues and give lip service to American workers, without really thinking about the sacrifices that they actually made just a couple of generations ago to ensure a decent and prosperous future for their children and grandchildren. This Labor Day weekend, let's actually remember everything that the labor movement has done to protect employee health and safety over the past century. Remember, for example, the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire over 100 years ago and its aftermath. 
In March 1911, a fire swept through the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in Greenwich... Read more ...
Since Chair Gensler’s notice last week regarding his agreement with the union to extend “use or lose” annual leave into 2022, the union has received a number of questions about the issue from SEC employees, so we are providing an update.
This latest extension means that any SEC employee who has use or lose leave from 2020 and/or 2021 (i.e., annual leave above the 360-hour annual carryover) is not required to use it all by the end of leave year 2021 (January 1, 2022). The carried over leave will not be forfeited, but will instead remain as category 020 annual leave for use by the employee. If... Read more ...