Legislation bans all SES performance awards at VA

The House on April 30 approved a measure to ban the payment of performance awards to all members of the Senior Executive Service at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

The legislation, introduced by Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-Pa.) and approved on a voice vote, was offered as an amendment to the fiscal 2015 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act (H.R. 4486), which the House later in the evening passed 416-1.

VA—already mired in criticism over a persistent disability claims processing backlog—in recent days has come under even more fire amid reports of alleged misconduct by VA executives at a medical facility in Phoenix, Ariz.

The new measure, however, essentially would punish all VA executives by forbidding performance awards to all of the department's SES members.

The legislation drew the swift condemnation of the Senior Executives Association.

"The action by the House today was unnecessary and does nothing to address the critical issues of claims backlog and access to patient care," SEA said in a statement. "A blanket ban on performance awards only serves to punish those senior executives who are high performing and those who may not have a direct line of responsibility for the issues being raised in Congress."

Reader comments

Mon, May 5, 2014

It's about time this insanity stopped! Very few agencies are getting pay raise, much less bonuses. Thank you to The House.

Mon, May 5, 2014 joe smithson maryland

I sincerely hope that the bill is passed. Incompetence, unreasonableness,lack of understanding and mistreatment of staff members is the cultural norm and hallmark of the VA. News flash. There are NO high performing senior executives at the VA. There are only a bunch of good-old-boys satisfied to appear busy while pushing more work onto someone else. If there's a thoughtless and stupid decision to be made... well, let's just say they have the corner on that one.

Mon, May 5, 2014

First of all, please explain to me why the government is paying bonuses to anyone? This is the government not Ford Motor Corporation! Bonuses for SES has been abused foir decades if not longer. Because on is a Senior Executive he/she should not automatically receive a bonus. Thise funds should be used to reward those of us in the field making the SESers look good. Lets do away with all SES bonuses!

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