Union News Archive

09/01/2021
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 ...
08/23/2021
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 ...
08/17/2021
As the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant gathers steam across our nation and children under age 12 remain ineligible for vaccination, new SEC Chair Gary Gensler announced today that, effective on September 7, 2021, he is unilaterally terminating the program under which SEC employees have been permitted to use a limited amount of administrative leave for dependent care while working remotely. The union has notified Gensler that the SEC has an obligation to bargain over both the decision to change this seventeen-month old program, as well as what such a change would look like. For that... Read more ...
COVID Update
07/21/2021
The union has been fielding many questions and concerns from SEC employees regarding the agency's office opening status at this stage of the global coronavirus pandemic. We are providing this update to you on the SEC’s overall COVID-19 status. 
Voluntary Return
The union has been in discussions with management regarding permitting SEC employees to return to the office on a voluntary basis. We expect an announcement from management on this issue soon. Our position on voluntary return has been clear. If SEC employees want to return to their respective SEC offices on a strictly voluntary basis,... Read more ...
07/01/2021
This is an update on important pandemic-related news, including the results of the recent union survey on SEC operating status issues related to the ongoing pandemic (“Pandemic Survey”) that we recently administered, as well as our ongoing discussions with SEC management on any changes to our operating status.
As you all know, our current mandatory telework status extends at least until September 7, 2021, which is the Tuesday after Labor Day. As we have reported to you, in light of improving public health metrics, including the availability of Covid-19 vaccines to adults and some, but not all... Read more ...
06/30/2021
“In the truest sense, freedom cannot be bestowed; it must be achieved.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt
05/16/2021
FSAFeds has provided further information on new FSA flexibilities permitted during the pandemic under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Notice 2021-15 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Two big takeaways:
As the union previously reported, there will be a new Special Enrollment Period (SEP) from June 2, 2021 to June 30, 2021, during which participants may increase or decrease their current 2021 elections, or even enroll in FSAFeds for the first time for 2021. For those who may not know, FSAFeds allows employees to save considerable money by... Read more ...
05/06/2021
The Department of Health and Human Services and the Office of Refugee Resettlement are currently seeking federal employees to volunteer to serve on details at the southern border to help care for and place children who cross into the U.S. unaccompanied by adult family members. The Office of Personnel Management is partnering with HHS to promote the program, and is encouraging federal managers to allow interested employees to volunteer. Several Chapter 293 union members at the SEC have answered this call:  Jordan Baker (NYRO), Alethea Bard (OIA), Mary Farrell (BRO), Jared Jarvis (LARO), Alicia... Read more ...
04/30/2021
The union has continued to receive many questions about “use or lose” annual leave. Here is an update on the issue.
What Are the Basic Rules for Use or Lose Leave?
Federal employees are permitted to carry over from one leave year to the next a maximum amount of annual leave. Generally, federal employees may carry over up to 240 hours of annual leave. At the SEC, in late 2018 the union negotiated the right to carry over up to 360 hours of annual leave.
“Use or lose” annual leave is the amount of accrued annual leave that is in excess of that 360-hour maximum annual leave limitation for carry... Read more ...
04/20/2021
This week, OPM provided NTEU with information on new FSA flexibilities permitted under the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Notice 2021-15 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.  These flexibilities include allowing full carryover for a health care flexible spending account (HCFSA) and Limited Expense FSA (LEX FSA); extending the grace period for a dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA); and permitting care for dependents through age 14 for 2020 and 2021 under a DCFSA.
In addition, OPM is working with the FSAFEDS contractor, Health Equity,... Read more ...
04/16/2021
"I recently represented an employee that was hired under the disability hiring authority at the Federal Aviation Administration. This employee had performed satisfactorily for a number of years, but once her first level supervisor changed, her working conditions also dramatically changed.  Other employees were encouraged to report on the mistakes of this employee, and she was singled out for minor errors, which arguably can be attributed to her disability.  Ultimately, management reprimanded the employee for a raft of pretextual missteps.  Enter the union.  As a federal employee, I always... Read more ...
03/30/2021
History of the Student Loan Repayment Program at the SEC
The road to the Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) began back in the 1990s, when NTEU’s national Legislative Department won legislation in Congress affording the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) a wide range of recruitment and retention flexibilities that they could offer federal agencies, including student loan forgiveness. Subsequently, NTEU's Legislative Department worked closely with OPM to ensure the issuance of regulations giving this discretionary authority to federal agencies.
The SEC, however, did not opt to create a... Read more ...
03/18/2021
The union today submitted to SEC management proposals regarding diversity at the agency. The union has vetted and discussed these proposals with dozens of Chapter 293 union leaders across the SEC. We believe that the proposals are reasonable steps that the agency could, and should, immediately take. In fact, the union previously submitted many of these same proposals to SEC management last summer, in response to their multiple “town hall meetings” discussing diversity as part of the national dialogue related to these issues. At that time, management refused to bargain over the union’s... Read more ...
02/17/2021
Last week, several committees of the House of Representatives held markups to consider legislation that will be part of the FY 2021 Budget Reconciliation COVID relief package. These bills included a number of provisions that would impact federal employees.
On Friday, the House Committee on Oversight approved legislation that would provide 600 hours (15 weeks) of emergency paid leave for federal employees who are required to quarantine, are ill with COVID-19, are caring for a child whose child care provider is unavailable due to COVID-19 precautions or whose school or place of care has been... Read more ...
10/29/2020
Last week, President Trump issued an Executive Order (EO) establishing a new category of excepted service employees, known as Schedule F. This is a potentially far-reaching EO that could move tens of thousands of federal employees into the new Schedule F, which would strip them of their civil service protections, allow them to be hired and fired at will, and allow agencies to exclude employees classified as Schedule F from bargaining units. Schedule F would be broadly composed of “employees in confidential, policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating positions.” 
In response to... Read more ...
10/27/2020
Last week, the president issued an executive order (EO) establishing a new category of excepted service employees, known as Schedule F. This is a potentially far-reaching EO that could move tens of thousands of federal employees into the new Schedule F which would strip them of their civil service protections and allow them to be hired and fired at will. Schedule F would be broadly composed of “employees in confidential, policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating positions.” The EO also instructs agencies to seek to exclude employees classified as Schedule F from bargaining units... Read more ...
06/17/2020
Chapter 293 is mourning the loss of NYRO manager and former union steward, Azam Riaz, who passed away recently after a long battle with COVID-19. Following is an interview and profile of Azam that the union published in 2008:
This month Chapter 293 Works interviewed Azam Riaz, who is a Chapter 293 steward working in the New York Regional Office.
Azam began his career at the SEC after receiving his MBA from Farleigh Dickinson University seven years ago. He started as a compliance examiner and is now a staff accountant. His job includes conducting and participating in examinations of investment... Read more ...
06/17/2020
As you may know, the union recently succeeded in getting the agency to increase the amount of annual leave that a bargaining unit employee can carry over from one leave year to the next from 240 hours to 360 hours. Consequently, fewer staffers have to worry about some of their annual leave disappearing at the end of the year because it exceeds the old carry-over limit of 240 hours. However, many employees are now reaching out to the union to say that, given the pandemic, they might not be taking travel vacations this year and might therefore end up with more annual leave at the end of the... Read more ...
12/13/2019
Yesterday afternoon, congressional leaders announced that they have reached a deal in principle on government funding for FY 2020, reducing the possibility of another shutdown just a week before the current Continuing Resolution (CR) expires on December 20, 2019.
The agreement will be drafted into at least two minibus packages this weekend, with the House and Senate planning to hold floor votes next week. The House is expected to vote as early as Tuesday, followed by the Senate later in the week.    
NTEU has pushed for many funding and policy priorities in the final spending deal, and we ... Read more ...
11/05/2019
NTEU is continuing its fight against President Trump’s unlawful Executive Orders on multiple fronts. The union is fighting agency efforts to impose the harmful terms of the Orders in new contracts, such as caps on official time and limits on grievance rights, and we are filing administrative challenges when those agencies persist.     
In addition to our efforts at the bargaining table and our grievance procedures, we are supporting a new litigation effort brought by the National Association of Agriculture Employees. The federal appellate court in Washington, D.C. ruled against us. That court... Read more ...
GOAT Rodeo
08/27/2019
They are attorneys at the SEC by day, aspiring rock stars by night.  And Thursday night, Sept. 12, their band, G.O.A.T. Rodeo, will be competing for the second time in Law Rocks – a battle of the bands for rock n’ rolling legal professionals.  In 2018, the band was selected as the DC crowd favorite, and raised more than $15,000 for charity.  
Like last year, the band is playing to benefit the Federal Employee Education and Assistance (FEEA) Fund, NTEU’s non-profit organization, which is devoted exclusively to helping federal employees and their families through emergency assistance and... Read more ...
07/01/2019
Last week, the House of Representatives passed a Fiscal Year 2020 (FY 2020) spending bill by a vote of 224 to 196 that included funding for a number of agencies where NTEU represents employees, including the SEC, IRS, Bureau of Fiscal Service, Treasury Departmental Offices, Bureau of Engraving & Printing, Federal Communications Commission and the Federal Election Commission.  Earlier that week, NTEU sent a letter to members of the House of Representatives urging them to support this bill, reject amendments that cut agency funding and support other amendments to support employees at the... Read more ...
06/04/2019
The House Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government, which determines funding for, among other things, the SEC and other NTEU-represented agencies and has jurisdiction over government-wide employee issues, has voted to approve its FY 2020 bill. The full Appropriations Committee voted to approve the bill today. NTEU is pleased to inform you that the bill calls for a $175 million increase for the SEC, $100 million over the Administration’s request, which should allow for improved compensation as well as needed staffing increases. NTEU has worked hard to obtain... Read more ...
SEC Headquarters
03/19/2019
In a reversal of the SEC’s longstanding approach to recruiting and retaining an elite corps of professionals, the Commission announced today, over the union’s objection, that it will impose the lowest 2019 pay package in the federal sector, based on currently available data. This is despite Congress fully funding the SEC’s annual budget request this year.
SEC management has notified the union that it intends to impose a total pay increase of 2.4% for 2019. Only 1% of this increase will be applied to raise the SEC’s pay caps at the top of grades—roughly one third less than the 1.4% cap... Read more ...
White House
03/19/2019
The second part of the White House 2020 budget proposal released this week reaffirms the administration’s persistent, sprawling agenda to denigrate federal employees, shrink their paychecks and pensions and weaken their rights in the workplace. “Just like last year, I am appalled to see an administration put in writing so many different ways to attack its own employees,” said National Treasury Employees Union President Tony Reardon. “Under the guise of ‘strengthening the federal workforce,’ this budget proposal would cut their take home pay, reduce their retirement benefits, expose them to... Read more ...

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