FCC Plans for Furloughing 1,265 Employees in Event of Funding Lapse

With funding for the federal government ending tomorrow barring congressional action, the FCC has said that 85% of its workforce, or 1,265 employees, will be furloughed and sent home in the event that agency appropriations lapse.

Among those who will not be furloughed are the five Commissioners, whose compensation is “financed by a resource other than annual appropriations,” and up to 185 employees whose “salary and expenses are not funded out of annual appropriations that will lapse on December 8 and [who] will be supporting spectrum auction-related activities,” according to the agency’s “Plan for Orderly Shutdown Due to Lapse of Congressional Appropriations” dated Dec. 5.

“Up to 13 employees, not otherwise exempt, will be retained to protect life and property,” the plan says.  “Up to three (3) employees will be retained to provide oversight or conduct interference detection, mitigation, and disaster response operations wherever they may be needed. These will be full-time employees strategically located across the country to resolve imminent threats to the safety of life or property,” it adds.

Up to nine employees will be retained “for critical oversight/protection of life or property,” up to four will be retained “to perform international and treaty related activity instrumental in the discharge of the President’s constitutional power,” and seven will be retained “for critical Information Technology (IT) issues.”

In addition, contractors will be retained for security, IT, and facility services purposes.

Furloughed employees will be given four hours for shut down activities, such as securing materials and files, cancelling travel plans, and cancelling meetings. Furloughed employees will be expected to monitor news regarding a continuing resolution or appropriations legislation and to return to work on the next scheduled day after the furlough has ended.

A continuing appropriations bill (H.J. Res. 123) that would extend funding at current levels through Dec. 22 passed the House and Senate late this afternoon, sending it to President Trump for his signature.  —Lynn Stanton, lynn.stanton@wolterskluwer.com

Courtesy TRDaily