Author Archive

Erich Wagner

Erich Wagner

Erich Wagner is a staff correspondent covering pay, benefits and other federal workforce issues. He joined Government Executive in the spring of 2017 after extensive experience writing about state and local issues in Maryland and Virginia, most recently as editor-in-chief of the Alexandria Times. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.
Erich Wagner is a staff correspondent covering pay, benefits and other federal workforce issues. He joined Government Executive in the spring of 2017 after extensive experience writing about state and local issues in Maryland and Virginia, most recently as editor-in-chief of the Alexandria Times. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.
Workforce

EEOC Delays Employee Office Reentry Amid Omicron Surge

The civil rights agency originally planned to bring bargaining unit employees back in February, but union officials said management did not properly consult them.

Pay & Benefits

Hill Proposal Would Give Federal Employees a 5.1% Average Pay Raise in 2023

A bill from Democratic lawmakers would provide federal workers with a 4.1% across-the-board boost, along with an average 1% increase in locality pay.

Workforce

Agencies Must Establish COVID-19 Testing Programs for Certain Unvaccinated Feds and Contractors By Feb. 15

Task force issues new guidance on coronavirus testing for those who report to federal facilities or otherwise interact with the public.

Management

OPM Issues Guidance on Agency Hiring of Chief Diversity Officers

The memo builds off President Biden’s executive order aimed at improving the diversity, equity, inclusion and accessibility of federal agencies.

Workforce

Report: 45% of All Federal Employees Teleworked in Fiscal 2020

The Office of Personnel Management’s latest annual telework report captures the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Workforce

OPM To Publish Rule Implementing Law Protecting Feds from Discrimination, Whistleblower Retaliation

The Elijah E. Cummings Federal Employee Antidiscrimination Act requires agencies to publish instances when they discriminated or retaliated against federal workers and encourages agencies to punish federal employees responsible for such acts.

Workforce

Union Calls on OSHA to Restore COVID Safety Standards for Health Care Workers

The workplace safety agency announced last week that it was partially withdrawing its emergency temporary standard for health care workers because it legally can only be in place for six months.

Workforce

OPM Proposes Regulations Repealing Trump-era Firing Policy

President Biden during his first week in office had rescinded the executive order aimed at making it easier to fire federal workers.

Pay & Benefits

Most TSP Funds Rebound to End 2021

All but one of the portfolios in the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings program finished December in the black.

Management

OPM Again Extends Deadline for Agencies to Adopt Skills-Based Hiring

The government's personnel agency said final guidance on implementing skills-based hiring assessments, rather than purely educational attainment, is coming soon.

Management

Biden Appoints Acting Labor Mediation Director, Demands Senate Action on Nominee

President Biden’s choice to lead the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service has languished awaiting a confirmation vote by the Senate since August.

Pay & Benefits

Biden Issues Executive Order Finalizing Average 2.7% Pay Raise for Feds

Although the raise isn’t as much as many federal employee groups had hoped for, it restores civilian-military pay parity.

Workforce

Social Security Administration, Union Spar over Reentry Plans

Union officials say they suspect the agency is withholding details of its reentry plan to avoid having to negotiate over it, an accusation management denies.

Workforce

Science Foundation and Union Clear the Air on Reentry, Remote Work Plans

In a message to employees, agency leaders provided a detailed timeline for returning to the office and implementing plans to adopt a hybrid work environment, and sought to assuage employee fears amid the rise of a new COVID variant.

Pay & Benefits

Pay Agent Adds One New County to Locality Pay Area, Encourages ‘Fresh’ Look at Other Issues

Although the president’s pay agent declined to waive the requirement that there be at least 2,500 General Schedule employees in a region to be eligible for a locality pay area, it noted that Carroll County, Illinois, has recently met the requirement anyway.

Workforce

Science Foundation Director Faces Employee Backlash Over Reentry Announcement

Union officials say the NSF director appears to be slow-walking implementation of a hybrid work environment, including remote work and telework, following the COVID-19 pandemic.