AUTHOR ARCHIVES

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.
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Appointee Watch: A Cabinet-Level Shuffle Could Be Looming

December 1, 2017 President Trump still has plenty of work to do to staff the upper echelons of the federal bureaucracy, but for now he seems focused on rearranging who’s in charge of several key agencies. The New York Times reported Thursday that the White House has devised a plan to push Secretary...

Most TSP Funds Gained Ground in November

December 1, 2017 Most of the funds in the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings program continued to gain in value in November, putting employees and retirees in position for a strong end of 2017. The common stocks of the C Fund led the pack for the Thrift Savings Plan last month, growing by...

House Narrowly Passes Bill to Extend Feds’ Probationary Period

November 30, 2017 The House voted 213-204 Thursday to approve a plan to make new federal employees work in their positions longer before they are entitled to civil service protections. The 2017 Ensuring a Qualified Civil Service Act (H.R. 4182), introduced by Rep. James Comer, R-Ky., would increase the probationary period for new...

Dueling CFPB Chiefs Face Dueling Allegations

November 29, 2017 Less than 24 hours after a federal judge denied a request to prevent Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney from taking the reins at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, both he and his rival acting director are facing allegations of impropriety. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., chairman of the...

TSP Participants Are Leaving Money on the Table, Fund Changes, and More

November 29, 2017 Officials at the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings plan said Tuesday that some employees are actually investing too much of their paychecks, and as a result they’re leaving money on the table. Geoffrey Nieboer, the Thrift Savings Plan’s chief of business intelligence, told members of the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment...

Federal Employees Unlikely to Receive Extra Time Off Around Christmas

November 29, 2017 President Trump may have put renewed emphasis on the phrase “Merry Christmas,” but that is unlikely to translate to additional time off for feds this holiday season. This year, Christmas Day falls on a Monday, which federal workers will receive as a holiday. In years where Christmas falls on a...

TSP Officials to Continue Studying a Potential Change in How Lifecycle Funds Are Invested

November 28, 2017 Members of the board that governs the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings program were supportive Tuesday of a proposal to change how lifecycle (L) funds wind down their investment in stocks and equities as participants age, but ordered further study of the issue. Currently, participants in the Thrift Savings Plan’s...

Congress Returns With Less Than Two Weeks to Avoid a Shutdown

November 27, 2017 Congress has returned from recess to face a crowded legislative calendar, with little time to sort out how to keep the lights on at federal agencies next month. Lawmakers must pass a spending deal by Dec. 8 to avert a government shutdown. Earlier this month, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis.,...

Federal Unions Support Request for Supreme Court Review of Denied MSPB Case Appeals

November 22, 2017 Officials with the National Treasury Employees Union announced Tuesday that they have filed friend-of-the-court briefs on behalf of three federal employees asking the Supreme Court to review their appeals of Merit Systems Protection Board cases. In each of the three cases, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit...

No Timeline Yet for Loosening of TSP Withdrawal Rules Under New Law

November 22, 2017 President Trump signed a bill last week that would loosen the withdrawal rules for enrollees in the federal government’s 401(k)-style retirement savings program, but feds will have to wait a little while longer before they see greater flexibility. The TSP Modernization Act (H.R. 3031) will make it easier for federal...