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TSA, FDIC to offer early retirement options

The Transportation Security Administration and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation plan to offer Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA) and Voluntary Separation Incentive Payments (VSIP) options to eligible employees.

 In a recent town hall meeting, TSA told staff of plans to offer VERA options to eligible employees, according to a report in Federal News Network.

The Office of Personnel Management had already granted TSA authority to use VERA as an option for increasing voluntary attrition through April 30, 2021, while it is “undergoing substantial organizational change,” a condition for invoking early retirement.

VERA temporarily lowers the age and service requirements for retirement to increase the number of employees who can retire when an agency is undergoing substantial restructuring, reshaping, downsizing or reorganization. Besides providing an incentive for employees to voluntarily retire to avoid layoffs, VERA allows agencies to offer early retirement to employees in safe positions, making space those occupying surplus positions.

TSA’s Human Capital Office will notify employees it considers eligible for voluntary early retirement consideration. Those employees must have either 25 years of service or 20 years of service and be at least 50 years of age. 

The VERA options will not come with the VSIP buyout, a TSA spokesman told Federal News Network.

TSA employees can find more information on VERA here.

In March, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation announced it would offer voluntary retirement and early separation opportunities to approximately 20% of its employees.

A February report by the FDIC's inspector general noted that 60% of FDIC executives and 58% of managers are eligible for retirement and warned that “this wave of potential retirements could deplete the FDIC’s institutional experience and knowledge, especially during a crisis. Without proper succession planning strategies, these retirements can also result in leadership gaps.”

FDIC’s volunteer retirement program “is part of a deliberate strategy to further reduce layers of management, acquire new skillsets, and allow the agency to proactively address succession planning prior to any crisis or emergency situation," Chairman Jelena McWilliams said. "This program will enhance our agility, preparedness, and technological transformation."

The program is not designed to reduce the overall size of the workforce, FDIC officials said, adding that it plans to grow its examination and risk-related workforce and increase IT and loan review skills at various levels throughout the agency.

Under the program, employees who voluntarily separate or retire from the FDIC will generally receive six months of salary.

Find more information on VSIP here.

Reader comments

Thu, Jul 9, 2020

Ditto that about the annual leave and not offering early outs. Management will not like if they get hit at the end of the year with a request for over a month of leave due to use or lose. This is bad for management and the agencies.

Wed, Jul 8, 2020

If an agency is not going to offer an early out in 2020, please send a courtesy email to your employees. Some employees are holding on to their annual leave for a possible lump sum payment. Those employees would like to use their use or lose hours while the weather is still nice.

Thu, Jul 2, 2020

Because of the low rate of pay that TSA offers its essential workers. It would be more a doable step to offer the VSIP option. Which would make it actually possible for these low wage earners to accept early retirement.

Thu, Jul 2, 2020 Webster D.C.

More agencies should be offering opportunities for concerned employees to exit Federal service gracefully during this pandemic crisis. A relatively straightforward approach would be to offer an early out under Voluntary Early Retirement Authority (VERA) or some form of disability retirement to eligible employees who are immunocompromised or providing exclusive care to others who are immunocompromised and unable to accept the risk of returning to the office and contracting a disease from which they or their loved ones may be unable to recover. As many of these employees remain on paid leave (typically at higher grades, considering the criteria), agencies also benefit from the opportunity to reduce non-mission essential positions and recruit fresh talent (typically at lower grades) now eagerly (if not desperately) seeking employment to fill positions that are more mission essential.

Wed, Jun 24, 2020

I've been following the VERA/VSIP announcements wondering why the Defense Intelligence Agency isn't announcing one for early FY21. I'm a DIA employee and we are way over our personnel allocations and according to our latest survey normal attrition will not get the agency to the right size. Has anyone heard rumblings about DoD VERA/VSIP authorizations for FY21?

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