Feds could donate sick leave to agency banks under House bill
The bill is expected to be "nearly cost neutral," according to a statement from a trio of Democratic sponsors: Reps. Gerry Connolly and Jim Moran of Virginia and Chris Van Hollen of Maryland. It would build on the annual leave banks that most agencies have. Federal workers currently can apply accrued sick leave toward their annuity calculation in full year or month blocks, but employees nearing retirement have to use or lose any remaining sick leave. That has led to millions of dollars in annual lost productivity, according to the bill's sponsors.
The legislation would allow feds to donate their excess sick leave to agencywide leave banks. The Federal Aviation Administration is the only federal agency that allows employees to donate both annual and sick leave. FAA employees donated more than 22,000 hours of sick leave in fiscal 2010.
"This is a proven policy in the private sector, and I witnessed its success firsthand during my years with Fairfax County [Va.], which has a similar policy," Connolly said. "If the federal government is going to continue recruiting and retaining highly qualified employees, this must be part of the menu for a competitive benefits package."
Reps. Frank Wolf, R-Va., and John Sarbanes, D-Md., are co-sponsoring the bill.
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