The Clock is Running on Next Shutdown Threat

 Current CR expires February 8 at midnight.

Current CR expires February 8 at midnight.

Unless you were on another planet, you know by now that another short-term continuing resolution (CR) was passed to keep the government open. This CR expires at midnight on February 8, 2018, which means that if a budget deal is not reached in Congress by then and signed by the President, the government will again shut down.

EPA announced before the last shutdown that it had funds to operate for about a week. Assuming that's true, and knowing that we've used one of those days of funds while the rest of the government was shut down, it is likely that EPA will be able to operate through February 14 or 15 before needing to shutter the doors.

One extremely important consideration that impacts EPA employees is payroll. While EPA was open, the U.S. Department of the Interior was closed. And it's Interior that handles EPA payroll. So if Interior is closed, EPA employees may not be paid even though EPA is operating. NTEU and the other unions investigated this during the just-past shutdown and determined that Interior had a skeleton staff that was processing payroll for one pay period. We should not assume, however, that Interior's payroll office will be operating during the next shutdown.

NTEU National was on the Hill fighting for us and obtained two large victories for federal employees. The bill ending the shutdown, H.R. 195, contains two provisions championed by NTEU: (1) pay for those furloughed in addition to those who worked during the shutdown (per S. Con. Res. 33) and (2) a two-year delay in the implementation of the excise tax (so-called Cadillac tax) on employer-provided health insurance plans, such as the FEHBP.  

Additionally, NTEU will continues its efforts with the Office of Management and Budget and the Office of Personnel Management on the timing of the pay now authorized by Congress to ensure federal workers are paid as swiftly as possible.

Make sure you check this website, check Chapter 280's Twitter feed, and watch your email for our exclusive members-only budget updates as the deadline approaches.