HUD Cancels 2 Furlough Days

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan Pablo Martinez Monsivais/AP

You can add the Housing and Urban Development Department to the list.

HUD became the latest agency to trim its furlough days, announcing on Friday that employees must now take only five days of unpaid leave, instead of the previously scheduled seven, by Sept. 30.

HUD joins the Defense Department and the Internal Revenue Service, which also have in the last several days decreased original estimates of the impact of sequestration on their workforces.

The American Federation of Government Employees said the announcement came as “welcome news.”

“There is no doubt that like so many other agencies, HUD could have absorbed sequestration’s cuts without any furloughs at all,” AFGE President J. David Cox said in a statement. “Still, the reduction from seven to the five days already taken is a victory for AFGE’s Council of HUD Locals, who never gave up the fight against the agency’s decision.”

Cox added it is no coincidence the furlough reduction announcements have come in bulk.

“Eventually, agencies across government are coming around to the reality that furloughs are costly and counterproductive in terms of dollars, production and morale,” he said.

Jerry Brown, a HUD spokesman, said agency leadership thought reducing furloughs was “the right thing to do.”

“The finance people have been tracking this throughout,” Brown said. “They’re pretty sure we can make the goal that we have to make, so the deputy secretary went ahead and made the announcement today.” 

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