U.S. Capitol Shutterstock image by W. Scott McGill


Bill aims to block president’s civil service EO

A group of House Democrats introduced legislation to block President Donald Trump's recent executive order to reclassify elements of the civil service to make it easier to hire and fire federal employees.

The Saving the Civil Service Act from Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-N.Y.) and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.), blocks last week's executive order creating "schedule F," a new classification of career federal employees in certain key roles.

Critics, including the sponsors of the legislation, say the executive order is an assault on longstanding civil service protections.

"[The executive order] is a last ditch attempt by the Trump administration to make it easier to remove federal employees who they deem aren't 'loyal enough' to the President and return us to patronage politics," said Connolly in an emailed statement about the new bill.

Jobs eligible for reclassification under Schedule F include, but aren't limited to, roles determining policy or regulations, posts involving the supervising of attorneys and roles in agency executive directorates.

In addition to blocking the use of funds for implementation, the new legislation would require any converted positions or appointments to be moved back to the competitive service. It would also reinstate with backpay anyone who was fired after being converted to Schedule F.

The release about the bill cited an OPM congressional briefing last week. There is currently no appeals process for employment decisions made after a position is converted to the new Schedule F. The executive order also allows the administration to fill policy positions without Title 5 competency protections.

Under the executive order, agencies have until January 19, one day before inauguration, to complete initial review of their position descriptions and submit recommendations for reclassification to OPM.

Dr. Ronald Sanders, chairman of the Federal Salary Council, resigned Oct. 26, in protest of the executive order remaking the competitive service.

Lawsuit looks to block workforce EO

The National Treasury Employees Union is suing President Trump and Michael Rigas, the acting director of the Office of Personnel Management to block the order.

The lawsuit, filed Oct. 26 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, argues that the order stretches the civil service law that permits the president to carve out exceptions to the competitive service when necessary.

"The order provides no details, data, or explanation for why competitive service selection procedures have impeded hiring of needed federal positions," the lawsuit states.

NTEU National President Tony Reardon said the executive order threatens employees' civil service and due process protections.

"It's shocking that after four years, the Trump administration still doesn't understand that the United States expressly rejected a spoils system 137 years ago because it was ripe for corruption," Reardon said in a statement.

Reader comments

Sun, Nov 1, 2020

For the comment regarding the permit for Fox News being “entertainment” vs “news” —that’s not a thing. https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/fox-news-entertainment-switch/

Sun, Nov 1, 2020

In the numerous years of a federal career, one observation that took hold was that there are way too many management bloats that do nothing but pick up a pay check and extend very little effort earning it. In fact they often were bigots, age biased minions who were transferred from other government agencies or internal transfers because management over them did nothing to reduce the number of ineffective imbeciles. They cheated at annual leave by pretending they were telecommuting or on official trips when in fact they were using travel as a guise to try a new golf course resort. This is so rampant at the Big Outfit in Bethesda.

Fri, Oct 30, 2020 John Hopping Minnesota

Hinterlands is using the dem tactic of blaming republicans for the exact thing that they do. Reverse psychology maybe. Any fool can see that the major ”so-called” news agencies are either point blank fake news or report only news they deem positive to Biden. No trustable news. Trump is trying to clean out the deadwood and deep staters of which you are probably one.

Fri, Oct 30, 2020

Senior levels of Civil Service have become weaponized and politized to target segments of the Population. Reform is needed

Thu, Oct 29, 2020 Hinterlands

Sounds like the commenter who began " The Chief Executive"...… has been watching too much Fox "News". When will the Trumpsters pay attention to the fact that Fox changed their application for a broadcast permit from News to entertainment, meaning they can gush any drivel they want to (and they surely do!!)w/o worrying about truth and accuracy. Wake up, dolts! Cheeto thinks you are all fools for supporting a huckster(him).

Show All Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above.

2021 Digital Almanac

Stay Connected

Latest Forum Posts

Ask the Expert

Have a question regarding your federal employee benefits or retirement?

Submit a question