Government affairs

Legislative Updates

Oversight Committee approves several fed and postal bills

On Sept. 15, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee marked up and approved several bills of interest to federal employees, including:

  • H.R. 2532: The EASY Savings Act of 2015, introduced by Rep. Charles Fleischmann (R-TN), would expand the awards program for federal employees to disclose fraud, waste or mismanagement that results in cost savings to the employee’s agency, to include identification of surplus “salaries and expenses.” It also permits the head of an agency to retain up to 10 percent of such savings to pay cash awards to the employees who identify surplus salaries and expenses funds.
  • H.R. 3779: This legislation was introduced by Rep. David Valadao (R-CA) to prohibit federal departments and agencies from including the Social Security number of any individual on any document sent by mail unless the department or agency head determines that inclusion of that Social Security number on the document is necessary.
  • H.R. 5920: The Whistleblower Protections for Contractors Act was introduced by Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) to make permanent an expiring pilot program for whistleblower protections for certain civilian contractors with the federal government. It also calls for expanding an existing limitation on defense and civilian contractors being reimbursed by the government for legal costs incurred in proceedings related to whistleblower reprisal.
  • H.R. 5790: The Federal Bureau of Investigation Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act was introduced by Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) to strengthen the rights and protections afforded to FBI employees so they can more effectively help root out waste, fraud and abuse. It would also broaden the categories of people who can receive a protected disclosure from whistleblowers, prohibit retaliation for participation in protected activity and replace the lengthy adjudication process.

Each of the bills was approved either with unanimous consent or a voice vote and were sent to the full House for consideration. While the bills affect federal employees, none have a direct impact on the Postal Service or its employees.

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