News Briefs

September 10, 1996

News Briefs

News summaries from OPM AM, the daily newsletter of the Office of Personnel Management. OPM AM is available on OPM Mainstreet, the agency's electronic bulletin board, at 202-606-4800.


INJURED FEDERAL EMPLOYEES' RETURN TO WORK MAKE EASIER UNDER OPM PLAN--"Temporary federal employees who are receiving workers' compensation due to a workplace injury will have their return to gainful employment made easier under proposed regulations announced today by OPM. Those affected by the proposal are individuals who sustain a workplace injury and, as a result, are unable to return to their former jobs. OPM's proposal would permit the employing agency to place the worker into another temporary position" (OPM News Release, September 9).

THE FEDERAL DIARY--"Should taxpayers be forced to pay the salaries of dozens, maybe hundreds, of federal workers who seldom, if ever, spend time doing the jobs for which they were hired? Should co-workers (at no extra pay) do the work left by a colleague who--in a union capacity--takes off to negotiate a contract, handle a grievance or have lunch with the head of the agency? If this happens a lot, should that absentee employee even be on the payroll?...The above is an oversimplified background to tomorrow's House civil service subcommittee hearing. The subject : Official Time.' Unions have been summoned to explain how much time and money their members are getting from the taxpayers to conduct union business rather than do their assigned jobs" (The Washington Post).

WORKERS' PRIVACY--"More than 20 million workers now have their computer files, voice mail, or e-mail searched by their bosses, the American Civil Liberty Union estimates in a new study on workplace privacy. Nearly one-third of newly hired employees undergo drug testing it says" (The Wall Street Journal).

THAT JOB THAT'S OPEN MIGHT BE A STEP UP BUT A BAD STEP FOR YOU--"Should you take an offered promotion, or would you be better off staying in your current job? Maybe it isn't the stuff of bestseller, but it's the meat-and-potatoes of most people's careers. And by most accounts, it's getting more complex as organizations shrink, flatten and restructure, rendering career ladders unrecognizable. But for the most part, the old rules of engagement still pertain: Know thyself, do your homework and look before you leap" (The Wall Street Journal).

NASA DOWNSIZING MAY REQUIRE RIFs--"The National Aeronautics and Space Administration intends to start planning a reduction in force in fiscal 1998 if it hasn't received enough voluntary resignations or retirements to reach its downsizing goals. NASA is half the way to reaching its goal of reducing it workforce from 25,500 full-time equivalents to 17,500, according to a General Accounting Office study" (Federal Human Resources Week).

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