Monday, December 16, 2013

Federal workers' pensions targeted in budget deal

Federal workers' pensions targeted in budget deal according this article, "Distinctly unpopular among voters and a scant presence in most congressional districts, federal workers have become an easy target in the hunt for budget savings.....But with pensions for non-government workers on a path toward extinction, federal employees get little sympathy from some experts."

Did you know...

Departments of State and Defense and other departments and agencies deploy federal civilian employees to Iraq or Afghanistan. DEPLOYING FEDERAL CIVILIANS TO THE BATTLEFIELD: Incentives, Benefits, and Medical Care, the oversight committee met to hear the
personal experiences of wounded DOD civilian employees. "The Department of Defense, which deploys the greatest number of civilians to Iraq and Afghanistan, has policies and procedures in place to provide medical care for those who  become ill, sustain injuries or wounds, or are killed while deployed to a combat zone in support of military operations. Most (but not all) wounded DOD civilians are given adequate care both in theater and after returning to the United States."

Really! Why would anyone want to wok for the federal government? Working for the feds can be hazards to your life - if you live than you get crapped on! American citizens must have a very short memory.

Let's go back and work forward.  The government’s response was immediate: federal employees, both civilian and military, sprung into action and were on the front lines of the rescue, recovery and investigation efforts. About 2,800 federal employees worked at the World Trade Center complex, primarily in Buildings 6 and 7. About a dozen IRS employees were in the Twin Towers on Sept. 11, conducting audits.  Of the 183 Pentagon victims, 69 were civilians.

Congress included a provision in the 2002 Defense Authorization bill (Section 1111 of Public Law 107-107) that authorized federal agencies to make hostile fire payments to civilian workers when they come under attack, are in imminent danger of attack or are killed in an attack. Government agencies were not obligated to grant hostile fire pay, but "several" agencies that had employees at the Sept. 11 sites decided to make the payments. That meant that all the civilians did not get pay.

Hostile fire pay is paid on a monthly basis, so employees who were at the Pentagon or World Trade Center complex on Sept. 11 would receive the $150 payment for the month of September 2011 only. Employees who were hospitalized because of the attacks would  receive $150 payments for up to 3 months during which they spent time in the hospital. So an employee injured in the Sept. 11 attack who spent parts of October and November in the hospital would receive $450 in hostile fire pay.

Federal employees do no get free medical insurance or care at military facilities. According to Office of Personnel Management (OPM),  "most" (not all) employees and annuitants, the Government contribution equals the lesser of: (1) 72 percent of amounts OPM determines are the program-wide weighted average of premiums in effect each year, for Self Only and for Self and Family enrollments, respectively, or (2) 75 percent of the total premium for the particular plan an enrollee selects.

"There could not have been as many survivors of the attack on the Pentagon without the persistent and selfless acts of others - military and civilian - who were themselves caught in the maelstrom or came unhesitatingly from elsewhere in the building to respond to the desperate circumstances facing the many victims trapped in the wreckage." Defense Studies Series - Pentagon 9

The U.S. Justice Department stopped tracking assaults on federal employees back in 2002, after it persuaded Congress to repeal a reporting requirement for such incidents.

On August 20, 1986, a part-time letter carrier named Patrick H. Sherrill, facing possible
dismissal after a troubled work history, walked into the Edmond, Oklahoma, post office,
where he worked and shot 14 people to death before killing himself.

Oklahoma City - 98 of those killed and 140 injured were federal government employees 3 of those killed and 126 injured were state government employees

Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building

(361 total occupants on April 19, 1995)
163 deaths
118 workers
15 children in Day Care
4 children visitors
26 adult visitors
166 injured
Occupational Highway Transportation Deaths  A total of 8,173 workers died from highway transportation incidents during 2003–2008, representing 24% of all fatal occupational 
June 2000, Stuart Charles Alexander shoot and kill, in cold blood, the two USDA inspectors and a state inspector. U.S. Department of Agriculture inspectors Jean Hillery, 56, and Thomas Quadros, 52, and state Department of Food and Agriculture Inspector William Shaline, 57, were killed. After shooting them, he returned to his factory and emptied three more shots into the heads of the victims, making sure that they were dead. 
June 2006 Tallahassee Federal Correctional Institution guard opened fire on FBI agents The dead were the guard and a U.S. Justice Department investigator. 

June 20, 2013 – Federal employees in national parks, wildlife refuges and marine sanctuaries experienced more attacks and threats in 2012 than in the previous year, according to agency figures obtained by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, PEER.

U.S. Park Police which recorded 42.9 percent more assaults and threats than during 2011. There were 100 violent incidents recorded by the Park Police in 2012, the highest number in its history.
In 2012, a Bureau of Land Management worker was shot at while driving a BLM vehicle in September. In a separate incident, a fleeing subject attempted to run over a U.S. Park Police officer with his car
Shooting death of Mount Rainier National Park law enforcement ranger Margaret Anderson on January 1, 2012 in Washington State. 
A park ranger was last killed in 2002, at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument in Arizona, while chasing drug traffickers.
February 2013  Officials say Eric Williams, 34, was killed by an inmate who used a homemade weapon at the U.S. Penitentiary at Canaan, a high-security prison for men
September 2013 gunman at Washington Navy Yard  killed 12 people 
November 2013 Gunman opens fire at LAX, killing TSA officer 39-year-old Gerardo I. Hernandez
....These are the deaths that make the news. There are others we will never know
"....But with pensions for non-government workers on a path toward extinction, federal employees get little sympathy from some experts."