DoD to Ask Congress for New Budget Authorities to Reduce Furloughs


According to a recent report in Government Executive, the Department of Defense (DoD) plans to request substantial ‘budget transfer authority’ to reduce the impacts of sequestration. This authority, if granted, could give DoD the flexibility it needs to further reduce or eliminate employee furloughs.

The transfer authority works by allowing Defense to move money across its various accounts to offset the across-the-board sequestration cuts set in motion earlier this year. By law, sequestration cuts affect each Defense account, meaning that the Department has little flexibility to offset painful cuts in one project area by moving those cuts to less painful areas.

Earlier this year, Congress granted Defense similar authority to move funds across accounts leading to DoD reducing the number of mandatory furlough days from the original 22 to the 14 that are scheduled today. With this new authority, however, Defense may be able to use existing funds from other programs to reduce furloughs further below the 14 currently scheduled days.

Though no formal proposal has been sent to Capitol Hill as of this writing, NFFE encourages employees to contact their members of Congress (on their own time, using their own phone) and tell them to support furlough reductions at DoD. Look out for more information from NFFE as this situation develops.

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