Visits to Key Congressional Leaders Will Follow in Afternoon
WASHINGTON, July 17, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Federation of Government Employees National Council 238 of EPA Locals will host its annual congressional breakfast in Washington, D.C., on Wed., July 18, to hear from lawmakers and update them on issues important to its members and the American people. The breakfast will be in the Senate Visitor's Center, SVC Room 215, from 8-11:30 a.m.
Of particular concern to EPA's largest union are proposals to extend the two-year freeze on civilian employee pay for an additional year or more, limit performance awards and recruitment, retention and relocation bonuses, freeze locality pay for five years, prohibit federal workers from carrying over unused sick leave from one year to the next, allow employees to carry over only half of their unused annual leave, cap vacation at 30 days annually and cut the government workforce by more than 300,000 jobs.
"We are concerned that, given the rhetoric some members of Congress are directing at EPA and other non-Defense agencies, the government won't be able to attract top employees in the future. Why would the best and brightest want to accept a job at the EPA when they know that their salary will not increase or keep pace with inflation?" said Council President Charles Orzehoskie.
"We find it difficult to understand how cutting funds to EPA's state, local and tribal partners will create jobs for the economy, when approximately 70 percent of EPA's funds go to assist EPA's partners and build this nation's infrastructure," said Council Treasurer John O'Grady. "Recent budget proposals for EPA are, in reality, economic time bombs that will cause jobs to be lost, people to get sick and die from increased pollution. The beauty of this great nation will be marred in the name of greed."
"Numerous organizations such as the American Lung Association, the Alliance of Nurses for Healthy Environments, American Public Health Association, and the Trust for America's Health have warned that rollbacks in environmental protections will harm the most vulnerable Americans. This country faces a jobs crisis that can't be solved by these draconian budget reductions," added Council Executive Vice President Tom Link.
AFGE Council 238 and its affiliated locals constitute a union of highly dedicated employees working within the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency nationwide. Membership in the Council includes Locals at EPA Headquarters, Research Triangle Park in North Carolina, all 10 Regional Offices, as well as the National Health & Environmental Effects Research Laboratory in Corvallis and Newport, Ore., National Vehicle & Fuel Emissions Laboratory in Michigan, and the Robert S. Kerr Research Laboratory in Oklahoma.
SOURCE American Federation of Government Employees