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Federal Employees News Digest : April 22, 2013
"Federal employees and contractors who are on the federal payroll should be first in line to pay their taxes," Chaffetz said in a statement issued after the vote. In regard to the failed bill, Chaffetz said that he would continue to seek a legislative remedy. "If we are going to protect the overwhelm- ing majority of good and decent federal workers we have a responsibility to root out the bad apples," he said. One labor leader who opposed the sec- ond bill, National Treasury Employees Union President Colleen Kelley, cheered the House for turning it down, calling the April 15 tax-deadline vote "nothing more than a political stunt." "I note, with some irony, that Congress is exempt from the furloughs facing the federal workforce and would have been exempt from the Chaffetz bill as well," she said in a statement. To see more, go to: www.nteu.org/PressKits/ PressRelease/PressRelease.aspx?ID. Whistleblowers get action on VA files The Department of Veterans Affairs has launched a program to improve recordkeep- ing processes at a facility in western New York after several medical record technicians blew the whistle on shoddy handling of files there. Announcement of the plan comes in the wake of an Office of Special Counsel investi- gation of those practices at VA's Western New York Healthcare System facility in Buffalo. According to OSC, four record technicians had reported numerous record-management problems to the director of VA Health Care Upstate New York, who in turn told the facility's associate medical director on Jan. 27, 2012, to review the allegations. Later the same day, the associate medical director reported that his review did not substantiate any of the technicians' concerns, OSC said. Having failed to gain action through VA channels, the employees then took their com- plaint to OSC, which subsequently required VA to conduct a full investigation. VA's inves- tigation then substantiated most of the techni- cians' claims. Among the four techs' disclosures, accord- ing to OSC, were that "medical files -- includ- ing cardiac records, dental records and Agent Orange registry records -- were randomly thrown in boxes rather than kept in any order, that many Social Security numbers were not properly attributed to the correct veteran name, and that mold-infested files were not handled properly to prevent further contamination and to ensure their restora- tion. As a result, veterans' medical records were often deemed unavailable." "All patients should have access to their medical records," Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner said in an April 16 statement. "These four employees should be commended for their persistence in resolving this problem." To see more, go to: www.osc.gov/docu- ments/press/2013/pr13_04.pdf. April 22, 2013 Vol. 62, No. 38 8 Visit us on the internet at www.FederalDaily.com Thrift SavingsplanShareprices FuNDS April 16 oNe MoNTh Ago oNe YeAr Ago G Fund F Fund C Fund S Fund I Fund lifecycle Funds L Income L 2020 L 2030 L 2040 L 2050 Register free to get rates of return and other TSP info at: www.FederalDaily.com/pages/resources/thrift-savings-plan.aspx 14.0845 14.0662 13.8839 16.1339 15.9484 15.5403 20.0232 19.8215 17.0245 26.9669 27.3587 22.7621 22.2827 22.2832 18.7493 16.0829 16.0428 15.3347 19.7924 19.7322 17.8909 20.8244 20.7610 18.4335 21.6882 21.6254 18.9079 12.0924 12.0587 10.3902 Federal Benefits Q&A Question: "My retirement date is June 30, 2013, and I am a CSRS Offset employee. Now that a furlough is scheduled to begin in June at one day per pay period, if I have to take June 28 as a furlough day will it have any impact on my retirement? Also, am I required to take a day, or since I am retiring can it be 'waived' for the month of June?" Answer: A furlough day will have no effect on one's retirement date. A required furlough day in a given month may not be waived because an employee is retiring in that month. Readers are encouraged to ask questions related to general employee benefits---such as CSRS, FERS, the Thrift Savings Plan, tax and estate planning, insurance, Social Security and Medicare---at the "Federal Benefits Q&A" at www.FederalSoup.com. continued from page 4
April 15, 2013
April 29, 2013