Last week, a bill aimed at firing federal employees delinquent on his or her taxes failed to pass in the House of Representatives for the second year in a row. While the vote saw a majority of the lower chamber vote in favor, a procedural requirement of two-thirds votes stopped the measure from moving forward. The bill’s defeat comes following an intense effort from NFFE and our allies on Capitol Hill opposing the effort.
Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee and three-time author of the Federal Employee Tax Accountability Act sought to have federal employees with any federal tax liability fired (curiously enough, the same provision would not apply to members of Congress).
Aside from the antagonistic nature of the Federal Employee Tax Accountability towards the federal workforce, the bill had several major flaws. It was duplicative in nature as current rules allow for agencies to take action, up to and including termination, against federal employees who do not satisfy their “just financial obligations.” The bill would have also grossly infringed on the privacy rights of federal employees by forfeiting their statutory right to keep tax information private – information that would be shared across the agency.
“Members of Congress say they are interested in being more fed friendly, but we cannot take them seriously when bills like the Federal Employee Tax Accountability Act are being brought to a vote on the House floor,” said NFFE National President William R. Dougan. “This bill is severe and duplicative, and we were pleased to see common-sense prevail in its defeat. This victory comes at the hand of strong coalitions of labor and our allied organizations fighting Chairman Chaffetz’s antagonizing bill.”
Rep. Chaffetz (R-UT) introduced the bill aimed at firing federal employees