Francis Rooney: Time to Stop Federal Employees Working for Unions While on the Clock

Last week, U.S. Rep. Francis Rooney, R-Fla., continued his efforts to ensure government employees can’t perform union tasks while on taxpayers’ dime.

Rooney brought out the “Do Your Job Act” to end official time which his office described as “an abusive practice where government employees use paid time off to perform union duties.” The proposal would also change the Federal Labor Management Relations Act (FLMRA) so federal agencies do not allow official time.

On Tuesday, Rooney weighed in on why he had brought out the proposal.

“Union official time is a taxpayer funded subsidy that cost hard-working Americans at least $162.5 million in 2014. Unions and federal agencies never report exactly how many federal workers are being granted official time, and at least hundreds of federal employees spend 100 percent of their time engaging in union activities while on the clock. This is a clear abuse of taxpayer dollars, and it does nothing to advance the interests of the American people who end up paying for it,” Rooney said.

“The only restriction on official time is that it can’t be granted for internal union business, but it happens anyway. There’s no reason for federal workers to be paid a government salary to perform union work. I introduced this bill to stop this unfair practice and to ensure that federal employees are working for all taxpayers, not for unions,” Rooney added.

So far, Rooney has not reeled in any cosponsors and there is no version of the bill over in the U.S. Senate. Rooney’s bill was sent to the U.S. House Oversight and Reform Committee last week.

Rooney has filed similar bills before but they went nowhere. Last year, he introduced the “Employee Freedom Act” which will “amend the National Labor Relations Act to permit employers to unilaterally cease to deduct from the employee’s paycheck dues owed by the employee to a labor organization when the agreement establishing such a deduction expires and to allow employees to cancel such deductions at any time.”

 

Reach Kevin Derby at kevin.derby@floridadaily.com.

 

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