TAMPA, Fla., Feb. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- The Free Enterprise Nation (FEN) today announced that it has found and posted on its website an apparently suppressed 2009 report by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management that indicates that in excess of $170 million in federal tax dollars were used in 2008 to pay federal workers to pursue union activities.
Entitled, "Official Time Usage in the Federal Government", the March 2009 report details that 2,893,922 hours of "official" time was clocked in 2008 by federal workers doing union business. According to FEN spokesman James MacDougald, "The average federal worker earned compensation and benefits of $121,000 in 2008, or $59.00 an hour. The total cost for 2.89 million hours comes to $170 million dollars, paid by taxpayers to support federal union activities."
According to MacDougald, "Congressman Phil Gingrey's office (R-GA), originally discovered the report in mid-2009 and Gingrey immediately proposed legislation to disallow "official" time to be used to conduct union business." The report has subsequently disappeared from the OPM website, and the original legislation was not allowed to come up for a vote in 2009 or 2010. Legislation has been re-introduced this year as the Federal Employee Accountability Act (HR 122) by Gingrey.
MacDougald stated that "Fortunately, Congressman Gingrey's staff printed-out and retained a hard copy of the report and have provided it to other members of Congress in support of HR 122, and we obtained a copy of the report last week. We believe that this is something that the public, not just Congress, needs to know."
According to MacDougald, "The report shows that 15.6 million hours of 'official time' was spent from 2004-2008 by federal employees doing union business", representing more than $600 million of subsidies to unions from the taxpayer. "Unions can well afford to pay their representatives for their time. We estimate that unions collected more than $3 billion in dues last year from government workers at all levels."
The full report is available at www.thefreeenterprisenation.org/FENI/media/Docs/08OfficialTime.pdf
The Free Enterprise Nation is a non-partisan member based organization representing American employees and businesses in the private sector. Its President, James MacDougald is author of the recently released best-selling title, "UNSUSTAINABLE: How Big Government, Taxes and Debt are Wrecking America." Mr. MacDougald is a regular guest on many national news networks including CNBC, FOX News, CNN and MSNBC and was recently prominently featured in the John Stossel special, The Battle for the Future.
SOURCE The Free Enterprise Nation