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Old 06-14-2019, 08:00 AM  
alpha_omega alpha_omega is offline
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Turn on Sonny Perdue/Local angle!

Love a story with a local angle.



Employees turn their back on Agriculture secretary over being relocated to Kansas City


Employees from two Department of Agriculture research agencies stood and turned their backs to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue at an all-hands meeting Thursday to silently protest a decision to relocate the agencies halfway across the country.

Perdue announced earlier Thursday morning that the Economic Research Service, which provides research and statistical analysis for lawmakers, and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture, which allocates federal research funding, will be relocated to Kansas City from Washington, DC, the final announcement in a process that began last year.

The department says the move will save taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars, but many employees view the change as politically driven and a way to disrupt climate research and other work their bosses disagree with. Both agencies recently voted overwhelmingly to unionize to push back against the move.

Perdue announced the final relocation site in a letter that was distributed to employees Thursday morning. Perdue and the department have argued that the move will lower standard of living costs, save taxpayer dollars and move the agencies closer to "stakeholders."
"Following a rigorous site selection process, the Kansas City Region provides a win win -- maximizing our mission function by putting taxpayer savings into programmatic outputs and providing affordability, easy commutes, and extraordinary living for our employees," Perdue said. "The Kansas City Region has proven itself to be hub for all things agriculture and is a booming city in America's heartland.
Near the end of his nine-minute speech, Perdue said, "Moving you out of the capital area in no way lessens your importance." The secretary took no questions from employees after speaking.

But outside observers, current employees and members of Congress have pushed back against the plan since it was first announced last year.
Kevin Hunt, acting vice president of the ERS Union, condemned the move as "cold-hearted" and that it "highlights his disregard for the rights and well-being of employees."
"Secretary Perdue continually speaks of transparency and communicating to employees but has failed on both fronts," Hunt said.

One watchdog group opposed to the move has previously said the relocation is a "back-door" way to cut staff.
The announcement included a cost benefit analysis report that says the agency will save $300 million over a 15-year period.

The USDA also walked back its previously announced plan to reorganize the Economic Research Service under a political branch of the department, saying they will not move forward with this "after hearing feedback from stakeholders and members of Congress," according to Thursday's release.
The agency will remain part of the research, education and economics mission of the department.

The relocation plan has drawn opposition from House Democrats, who included language in their budget banning USDA from using funds allocated by Congress to relocate either agency outside the capital. A group of Democratic senators have also introduced legislation that would bar USDA from moving the research agencies.

In a conference call with reporters Thursday afternoon, Perdue said that "Congress can do what Congress does, and we will respect that." He added that they have tried their best to persuade Congress and hope that the move will be seen as a "legitimate executive function."
The USDA's inspector general is also investigating whether Perdue has the legal authority to move the agencies.

Perdue also thanked the two research agencies for their "professionalism" and said it's "understandable" that some have expressed displeasure. He added that this decision was not made "with disruption in mind," and that federal employees have many other opportunities within the government should they choose to stay. Employees were to receive their reassignment information on Thursday.

"I'm convinced that once people who choose to move can relocate to Kansas City I think there will be more furor trying to move them back after three or four years than moving them here," Perdue said. "It's not like a company closing in rural America where there are no other jobs there."
Other agencies within the USDA are also experiencing uncertainty.

Last month, USDA announced it will cease operating the Job Corps Civilian Conservation Centers, which help train low-income, rural students to respond to national emergencies, and will transfer them to the Department of Labor. Nine out of the 25 centers are expected to close as part of the move, according to the announcement, and a union spokesperson from the National Federation of Federal Employees told CNN that the move will cut more than 1,000 jobs.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/13/polit...due/index.html
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:00 AM   #2
patteeu patteeu is offline
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They're turning their backs on everyone in flyover country.
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:35 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
They're turning their backs on everyone in flyover country.
Oooooh that’s rich of you to say ^^^
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:42 AM   #4
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If your company moves, you have an option....move with it or look for a new job.

This is no different. Some will find work in a different govt agency, others will be thrilled to live in a lower cost of living place where its great to live and raise kids

This is a great move for the KC area to get this.
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Old 06-14-2019, 08:52 AM   #5
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Saves the government something like 20 million a year and makes sense....but somehow that is a bad thing?

And Congress just opposes it because it is Trump....
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Old 06-14-2019, 09:22 AM   #6
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I’ve been involved in a couple of these agency re-locations. 1 I had sympathy for those being moved, 1 I did not. I understand it’s a major decision point for them and their families. I’ve been at several of these type “town halls“ to listen to federal workers and to explain the specifics of the move.

There is always the press and Congressional bickering over federal workers moving particularly in DC. Very little discussion about what’s best for the mission or to serve the customers (American farmers in this case vice the other agencies in DC where their buddies work that they typically argue to stay in DC for)



Standing up a new agency or incorporating a new merit vice seniority based personnel system (NSPS over GS system. dropped back to GS in 2009 and remains that today) even much more fun.

Homeland Security. Had no people but had billets and large budgets when it was authorized. Then (I was still in uniform so didn't think much of sillyvilians) out of the goodness of our hearts, we at the Pentagon, volunteered to run their budget and help transfer people. I moved every shit bird over to DHS and with a promotion. We payed for that and I was short sighted then with a war on. DHS took 10 years to overcome that.

In DC , they frequently forget they are public servants and are used to being the served. There are likely many incentives to moving early and buy outs if choosing not to move. Or just transfer to another agency or leave. There will be more whailing and nashing of teeth about this “Who moved my cheese?”
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Old 06-14-2019, 09:31 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Prison Bitch View Post
Oooooh that’s rich of you to say ^^^
Why is that?
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Old 06-14-2019, 12:36 PM   #8
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I think the next move should be to start moving government activities out of KKKalifornia. For the good of the nation.
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