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NFFE Applauds House Passage of Bill Extending Pension Parity to All Federal Employees, Automatic Enrollment in TSP

Thursday, July 31, 2008
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Randy Erwin, Legislative Director

Phone: (202) 257-0948

 

Washington, D.C. - The National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE), a national union representing 100,000 federal government workers, enthusiastically supports the inclusion of two provisions in the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (HR 1108) that are favorable to federal employees.  The first provision establishes a benefit for unused sick leave for federal retirees, while the other automatically enrolls new federal employees in the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP).

 

Under the current system, federal workers enrolled in the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) do not receive compensation for residual sick leave when retiring, whereas their counterparts under the newer Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) have this time factored into their annual retirement annuity.  This language would give FERS retirees equal treatment in calculating their unused sick leave benefit.  As well as promoting fundamental fairness in the federal retirement process, this reform also serves to incentivize the judicious use of sick leave, saving an untold amount of taxpayer dollars in lost production.

 

“The passage of this bill represents a significant victory for workers enrolled under the (FERS) system,” said Richard N. Brown, National President of NFFE. “Not only does it provide a well-deserved reward for the most dedicated of our public servants, but it does so in a way that ensures their legacy of honest, hard work is passed on to future generations.”

 

“This common sense piece of legislation goes a long way toward ensuring that our civil servants are rewarded rather than punished for their integrity in the use of sick-leave,” said Brown.

The bill also included language establishing an automatic enrollment policy for new hires in the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), a change Brown argued in favor of in April before the House Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce, Postal Service, and the District of Columbia.

“Far too many new federal workers were leaving free money on the table by waiting to enroll in the TSP,” said Brown.  “With this bill, new enrollment will occur automatically.  That will be a good thing for young people entering the federal workforce.”

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Established in 1917, the National Federation of Federal Employees is the oldest union representing civil service federal employees.  NFFE currently represents 100,000 federal employees government-wide.  NFFE is affiliated with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers.

 

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