Mar 31, 2017

Contact Your Representative: Vote NO to H.R. 1364, H.R. 1385, and H.R. 1461.

DO NOT CONTACT MEMBERS OF CONGRESS ON OFFICIAL DUTY TIME, USING A GOVERNMENT PHONE, ON GOVERNMENT PROPERTY OR USING GOVERNMENT EQUIPMENT, INCLUDING GOVERNMENT EMAIL ADDRESSES.

Click HERE to tell your Representaive to VOTE NO to H.R. 1364.

There have been multiple pieces of legislation introduced recently regarding the use of official time. Each piece of legislation either limits the use of official time or penalizes employees who use it. This week the House of Representatives is considering the Official Time Reform Act of 2017 (
H.R. 1364), introduced by Representative Jody Hice (R-GA). This bill requires that any employee on 80 percent or more official time for the year, forfeits their retirement benefits for that year. Representative Virginia Foxx (R-NC) introduced the Civil Service Incentives Integrity Act of 2017 (H.R. 1385), which will limit recruitment and retention bonuses for employees who are on official time. Most recently is the Veterans, Employees and Taxpayer (VET) Protection Act (H.R. 1461), introduced by Representative Jodey Arrington (R-TX), which prohibits employees involved with direct patient care from spending more than 25% of their time on union activities and any VA employee from spending more than 50% of their time on union activities. Each piece of legislation fails to recognize the importance of official time and its role in labor-management relations. 

Federal employee unions are legally required to represent all employees in bargaining units they represent without regard to membership. In exchange for representing all employees, dues paying and non-dues paying, equally, the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 granted official time, or the ability to perform during work hours, for certain activities that are in the joint interest of both the union and the agency.

Click here to Tell Your Representative to Vote NO to H.R. 1364

NAGE/IBPO and your colleagues across the country need your help to defeat this bill.  Contact your representative and tell them to vote NO to H.R. 1364H.R. 1385H.R. 1461, and any legislation that restricts the use of official time or weakens due process rights for federal employees. To call your representative in the House, call the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121, and ask to speak with your congressman. 

Click to read NAGE National President David J. Holway's letter to the House opposing H.R. 1364

What YOU need to know about H.R. 1364H.R. 1385H.R. 1461, and official time.
  • Representative Hice is using this bill punish union members because he is opposed to official time. He has introduced numerous pieces of legislation and offered amendments which would eliminate official time throughout his time in Congress.
  • On March 8, 2016, at the Oversight and Government Reform Committee markup of H.R. 1364, Representative Hice said “If I had it my way there would be no official time.”
  • Enacting legislation that withholds service credit hours is dangerous and precedent setting.
  • Agency leadership has never complained to the Oversight and Government Reform Committee over official time abuse.
  • Official time is negotiated between the Union and the Agency and is only the amount deemed “reasonable, necessary, and in the public interest.”
  • Without local officials on official time, additional funds will be expended paying agency officials to hold meetings with union representatives after hours and for the payment of third party attorneys and arbitrators. 
  • Restricting the use of official time will result in increased costs to the agency, the American taxpayer, and decrease the efficiency of the federal government.


The American Labor Movement has consistently demonstrated its devotion to the public interest. It is, and has been, good for all America. - John F. Kennedy
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