Affiliated with the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), we are comprised of 40 HUD Locals throughout the U.S. Members elect delegates and the Council Executive Board meets monthly to set our direction/priorities.

FIGHT BACK!

UPDATE: September 25, DOJ files notice to appeal (see article below)
UPDATE: August 25, Judge strikes down Executive Orders!

July 7 - AFGE.org is providing information on how you can FIGHT BACK (in below link).

DO NOT contact congress on duty time or use agency equipment!

FIGHT BACK HERE

Legislation Tracker

This news tracker holds legislation that affects all of us as HUD employees and as Federal employees.
- Find your Senator
- Find your House Representative
- Find, review and easily sign up for e:alerts on bills at Congress.gov
DO NOT contact congress on duty time or use agency equipment!

Fed Employee Buyout Boost

S-1888 - Senate bill increases standard buyout to $40,000 government-wide. $25,000 was set in 1990s. Bipartisan measure approved without objection, no counterpart bill offered.

10/2017 congress.govRead More
Official Union Time

H.R. 1293 - Would amend Title 5, United States Code, to require that the office of Personnel Management submit an annual report to Congress relating to the use of official time by Federal employees. Click "Read More" and sign up for alerts on this bill.
Update: 10/05/2017 Placed on Senate Legislative Calendar

05/2017 congress.govRead More
Stop Wasteful Federal Bonuses Act

S.742 - Prohibits a fed agency from awarding a bonus to employee for 5 years after adverse finding, would also require employee to repay any bonuses awarded for any year in which the adverse finding made. Update:Still on legislative calendar

03/2017 congress.govRead More
HUD Inspection Process Enforcement Reform Act of 2017

S.160 Bill to reform inspection process and gives HUD Sec authority TO REMOVE HUD employee if misconduct or performance warrants such action.
Latest action: None

01/17/2017 congress.govRead More
MERIT ACT

H.R. 559 (Modern Employment Reform Improvement and Transformation Act) Empowers agency heads to fire federal employees for misconduct or performance-related reasons. Employees must be given written notice 1-3 weeks in advance of being terminated.
Latest action: None

01/13/2017 congress.govRead More
Promote Accountability and Government Efficiency Act

H.R. 6278 Changes to fed pay system, prohibits pay raises, makes all feds "at will", allows immediate suspension, eliminates official time so union reps can no longer work to protect your pay/benefits/job during work day. Latest action: None

09/28/2016 congress.comRead More
PRESERVING HUD MF FIELD OFFICES ACT OF 2016

H.R.5202 - Waters (D-CA)
Prohibits HUD from relocating to any core office of MFHSG any asset mgmt position that, as of this bill's enactment, is located at a non-core office of that Office. "Core office" is a regional hub office in ATL, CHI, FtWorth, NYC, or SanFran Latest action: None

05/11/2016 congress.govRead More
FIGHT BACK!

3 Executive Orders to fight

LEGISLATION TRACKER

Issues affecting us are in this tracker

Fed Employee Buyout Boost

increase standard to $40,000

Official Union Time

Your Right For Representation Gone?

Stop Wasteful Fed Bonuses Act

Prohibits bonuses for 5 years

S.160 HUD Bill by Rubio (R-FL)

Inspection Process & Enforcement

H.R. 559 Merit Act

Empowers heads on employee firing

H.R. 6278 Page Act

Cut fed salaries to $1?

H.R. 5202 HUD MF Field Offices Act

MF Staff Relocation



Lawmaker Proposes Parity for Federal Pension COLAs

Govexec.com, November 20 - One northern Virginia lawmaker wants federal employees' pension programs to have parity in how annual cost of living adjustments are applied, ending more than 30 years of what he described as an "unfair system.". On Tuesday, Rep. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., introduced the Equal COLA Act, a bill that would ensure that enrollees in the Civil Service Retirement System and the Federal Employees Retirement System receive equal cost of living adjustments to their annuities each year. read article

Federal Pay Raise Rests in the Balance as Parties Float Riders to Spending Package

Govexec.com, November 19 - As federal employees wait to see whether they will receive a pay raise next year, Republicans and Democrats both appear to be standing firm on proposals they want attached to a spending package needed to avert a partial government shutdown early next month. Since February, the Trump administration has called for a pay freeze for all federal civilian employees in 2019, a plan the president cemented in August with the release of his 2019 alternative pay plan. Congress has begun to take steps to override Trump's proposal—the Senate approved an appropriations bill that would include a 1.9 percent across-the-board raise for civilian federal workers, and last month House negotiators suggested they would not fight against its inclusion in a final deal—but unrelated issues could jeopardize the provision, at least temporarily. read article

Court Denies Trump Administration Request to Expedite Appeal of Workforce EO Decision

Govexec.com, October 19 - A three-judge panel in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on Thursday mostly denied a request by the Trump administration to expedite its appeal of a U.S. District Court ruling overturning the key provisions of three controversial workforce executive orders. read article

Trump Administration Appeals Court Ruling On Workforce EOs

Govexec.com, Sept 25 - The Justice Department on Tuesday filed a notice that it would appeal a recent court decision that struck down three controversial workforce executive orders President Trump signed earlier this year to make it easier to fire federal workers and reduce the influence of federal employee unions.

The case will go to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.

In a notice filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Assistant Attorney General Joseph Hunt said the administration will seek to overturn the August decision by U.S. District Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, which found that the key provisions of the executive orders were unlawful. read article

Judge Strikes Down Trump Executive Orders Limiting Federal Employee Union Bargaining

Govexec.com - August 25 - U.S. District Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson late Friday night struck down most provisions of the Trump administration´s controversial workforce executive orders, concluding that they conflicted with the 1978 Civil Service Reform Act.

Jackson found that the three executive orders, which seek to make it easier to fire federal workers and significantly reduce how unions can collectively bargain and represent employees, disregard Congress´ conclusion that good-faith labor-management negotiations are "in the public interest." read article

Federal district judge invalidates 9 provisions of Trump executive orders

federalnewsradio.com - August 25 - In a highly-anticipated decision, a federal district judge invalidated nine provisions of the president's executive orders on official time, collective bargaining and employee removals, in response to a series of legal challenges from a coalition of federal unions. The decision, which came late Friday night, prevents agencies from implementing or enacting the following provisions of the president's EOs:

1) The imposition of a 25 percent cap on the use of official time,
2) The prohibition against employees' right to petition and communicate with Congress,
3) The ban on the use of official time by union representatives to prepare and present grievances,
4) The one-hour per bargaining unit employee formula to be applied to set an aggregate cap on the use of official time,
5) The limitations placed on unions' use of agency facilities, such as office space and computers,
6) The exclusion of challenges to performance ratings and incentive pay from the scope of the negotiated grievance procedure,
7) The limitation of performance improvement periods (PIPs) to 30 days, with agencies alone having the discretion to apply longer periods,
8) The direction to agencies to press for the exclusion of removals from the scope of the negotiated grievance procedure, and,
9) The prohibition against bargaining over the "permissive" subjects. read article

In 4-Hour Hearing, Judge Suggests Executive Orders Ignore Half of Labor Statute

Government Exec, July 26 - After months of posturing by the Trump administration and federal employee unions, both sides had their day in court Wednesday, as a federal judge spent four hours challenging both sides over the president's recent workforce executive orders.

More than a dozen federal employee unions have sued in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to block implementation of the executive orders, challenging their legality on a number of fronts. They have asserted that the orders conflict with the Civil Service Reform Act and that the act precludes the president from weighing in on collective bargaining altogether.

Jackson said she would take the arguments raised under advisement and issue a written ruling in the coming days. But she had one broader critique for how the Trump administration analyzed the Civil Service Reform Act in crafting its executive orders.

"You were very careful in citing the ´effective operation of government´ aspect of the law, but that´s only one aspect Congress was concerned about when they wrote it," she said. "Congress makes it very clear that it believes effective unions—and collective bargaining—are in the public interest. But these EOs are about half of that balance and not the other." read article

White House Dismisses Unions´ Complaints Against Workforce Executive Orders as Premature

Government Exec, July 24 - Attorneys for the government plan to argue Wednesday that a federal court lacks jurisdiction to hear a legal challenge against President Trump´s recent workforce executive orders, and that unions were premature in filing the challenge. But a cursory look at the actions taken by the Trump administration and federal agencies since the orders´ enactment in May calls those claims into question. read article

AFGE Recounts Evictions, 'Union Busting' at Federal Agencies

Government Exec, July 12 - In a call with reporters, American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox said that union access to office space is integral to labor groups being able to meet with and represent front-line employees as required by the 1978 Civil Service Reform Act. Union leaders representing employees at the Social Security Administration, the Veterans Affairs Department and the Bureau of Prisons said management is moving to evict unions from office space, preventing them from taking documents off-site and blocking them from using official time or unpaid leave to represent workers.

"Union officials at the Social Security Administration are being stripped of access to vital tools that help us represent working people as we are required to do by law, including telephones, computers, Internet access, and even bulletin boards," Cox said. "And as of yesterday, management has removed union access to all meeting rooms on agency property."

John Kostelnik, president of AFGE Local 3969, which represents Bureau of Prisons employees in Victorville, Calif., said the administration´s implementation of the executive order has hamstrung the agency's ability to respond to the massive influx of detainees from the White House's zero tolerance policy for undocumented immigrants and asylum seekers. read article

Federal Judge Consolidates Lawsuits on Workforce Executive Orders, Schedules Hearing

Government Exec, June 19 - A federal judge announced Monday that she is consolidating three different legal challenges brought against President Trump's recent workforce executive orders, and has scheduled a hearing date of July 25.

Since the enactment of three controversial executive orders aimed at making it easier to fire federal employees and reducing the influence of federal employee unions, the American Federation of Government Employees; the National Treasury Employees Union; and the Federal Workers Alliance, a coalition of 13 smaller unions, all have sued the Trump administration challenging the edicts. AFGE and NTEU both have filed injunctions to prevent the orders from being implemented until after their court challenges have been resolved.

In an order issued June 18, U.S. District Court Judge for the District of Columbia Ketanji Brown Jackson consolidated all three cases, citing their similarity in facts and legal questions. She also agreed to "expedited briefing" of the case, meaning the court will skip traditional preliminary phases of the case and proceed directly to discussion of the merits, with a motion hearing scheduled for July 25. read article

HUD tells union to vacate federal office space, citing executive orders

Federalnewsradio.com, June 18 - The Department of Housing and Urban Development is moving quickly to implement President Donald Trump's recent executive order on official time by telling federal employee unions they can no longer use federal facilities or resources to do the organizations´ work. And the Social Security Administration and Department of Health and Human Services may be following in their footsteps.

HUD told the American Federation of Government Employees and the National Federation of Federal Employees that it wants to engage in midterm negotiations to implement the requirements under the EO. But one key proposal submitted by the agency would be for the unions to vacate federal office space by July 15.

"No union representative, when acting on behalf of the union, may be permitted the use of government property or any other agency resources. Such property and resources include office or meeting space, reserved parking spaces, phones, computers, computer systems, copy machines, paper, filing cabinets, keys, scanners, external drives, fax machines, use of printing services, subscriptions to information services (cyberdfeds, etc.) and all other government property or resources," HUD told AFGE on June 14. "The union shall have until July 15, 2018, to vacate all offices they currently occupy, return all government property they currently possess and cease using government resources. This applies to field and HQ." read article.

Read the June 15 Washington Post article "Social Security, HUD act on Trump's orders in move to emasculate unions"
Read the Gov Exec article "HUD Moves to Evict Union From Federal Office Space"
Read the Federal Times article "Why HUD is evicting an employee union from its offices"

FIGHT BACK Against the Executive Orders!

NOW - AFGE.org and Council 222 ask you to FIGHT BACK against the three Executive Orders by clicking on the link at the end of this paragraph. When you click the link you will see the following notice, please comply - IMPORTANT: This information should not be downloaded using government equipment, read during duty time or sent to others using government equipment, because it suggests action to be taken in support of or against legislation. Do not use your government email address or government phone in contacting your Member of Congress.

AFGE.org is providing information on how you can FIGHT BACK.

House Democrats Join Fight Against Workforce Executive Orders

Government Exec, June 14 A group of 23 House Democrats, including Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Whip Steny Hoyer, demanded Thursday that President Trump rescind three controversial executive orders that seek to make it easier for agencies to fire federal workers and significantly curb the influence of federal employee unions. In a letter to Trump, the lawmakers said the executive orders erode statutorily required protections for whistleblowers, and make it easier to politicize hiring and firing decisions in the federal workplace. read article

Republican Lawmakers Ask Trump to Repeal Workforce Executive Orders

Government Exec, June 13 A group of 21 House Republicans sent a letter to President Trump Sunday asking him to reverse course on three controversial executive orders aimed at making it easier to fire federal workers and curbing the influence of federal employee unions. In the letter, the GOP members of Congress touted the work of federal employees and asked the White House to rescind the executive orders and uphold the current law. read article

AFGE Sues to Block Official Time Executive Order

Government Exec, May 31 - The largest union representing federal employees sued the Trump administration Wednesday over President Trump´s executive order significantly curbing the use of official time by union representatives, arguing the edict violates the First Amendment and exceeds the president's constitutional authority.

In a lawsuit filed at the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the American Federation of Government Employees said the White House's Executive Order Ensuring Transparency, Accountability and Efficiency in Taxpayer Funded Union Time Use violates the First Amendment-guaranteed freedom of association and effectively rewrites portions of the 1978 Civil Service Reform Act without the assent of Congress. read article

Trump goes after Feds in latest executive orders

Federal Times, May 27 - In three executive orders signed May 25, 2018, President Donald Trump took aim at making federal employees easier to fire while cutting back on union time.

Merit System Principles
Official Time
Collective Bargaining

The first order fulfils a longstanding goal of the Trump administration in making it easier for the government to fire poor performers from federal positions. The order would limit the amount of time an employee under investigation for misconduct could spend on probation and encourage firings.

The second order specifically targets the use of official time, which allows federal employees to conduct union activities such as representing employees in disputes and negotiating contracts with the agency, by stating that federal employees must spend at least 75 percent of their time doing government work.

Official time use has recently come under fire by both OPM and members of Congress, who say that the rising amount of time spent per employee is a waste of taxpayer money. However, many experts have said that current methods for measuring official time use are likely wildly inaccurate.

The use of official time is protected under the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, and the amount of official time used by employees within an agency is usually up to the negotiations between unions and the agency.

The third of the executive orders calls for the renegotiation of such contracts, placing the responsibility for the negotiating strategy with the Office of Management and Budget within the White House and requiring that union contracts are posted online. read article

Unintended Tax Reform Fallout Creating ´Potentially Ruinous´ Bills for Thousands of Feds

Govexec.com, April 5 - About 25,000 federal employees per year could face a massive new tax liability under a provision of the overhaul of the U.S. Tax Code President Trump signed into law this year, thanks to the removal of a deduction that helped employees forced to relocate by their agency. The issue particularly impacts senior executives whose mobility is required as part of the job, as well as certain occupations—such as air traffic controllers—who are frequently asked to move around. As part of the relocation services it offers, the federal government pays for employees' moving costs related to household goods. That benefit was previously tax deductible and handled by the employee's agency. The tax reform shepherded through Congress by Republicans last year removed that deduction, and now, with guidance unclear, agencies are passing the full burden on to the employees. read article

HUD Attempts to Limit Bargaining with Union

October 16 - HUD has refused to pay the travel expenses of Union negotiators in an effort to avoid bargaining with AFGE Council 222 over what the Department has characterized as "union-initiated changes."

When the Council requested data related to HUD’s expenditures on bargaining-related travel, HUD refused to provide the information. HUD said that it could not respond to the Council’s FOIA request because it was "very broad," and that it "would be quite costly to produce" the information requested because of the many hours of professional search time that would be required.

In spite of the difficulties imagined by the FOIA office, the labor relations office was able to provide some of the information the Council requested under federal labor-management statutes: Data related to travel expenses for Union negotiators for the past two years was provided (the Union had requested data for the past three years).

The Employee and Labor Relations Division, however, refused to provide data on travel expenses incurred by management negotiators. The Union has to wonder what HUD is hiding related to managers´ travel.

Given the current political animus against public sector unions, HUD’s recent actions seem to be part of a concerted effort to marginalize the Union and remove employee protections. In recent months, HUD has:

    •   Refused to negotiate with the Union over the Department’s recognition of a group representing other employees in the bargaining unit in what appeared to be a violation of the Union’s right to exclusive representation.
    •   Claimed the Department did not have to negotiate what it called "union-initiated bargaining." The Federal Labor Relations Authority upheld the Union´s unfair labor practice complaint, and ordered HUD to the bargaining table.
    •   Refused to pay for Union negotiators’ travel expenses in cases of so-called union-initiated bargaining.
    •   Refused to provide current versions of proposed handbooks before negotiations in an effort to keep Union negotiators ignorant of the issues before they reach the bargaining table.

HUD says it wants to work with the Union, but these actions don’t support that claim.

Our Main Contract

After four years of negotiations, the Council signed a new term contract (in 2016). A working copy is available here in pdf.

The new Main Contract reflects the work of many talented union negotiators. It contains new provisions allowing employees to both telework and maxiflex (see Article 16) as well as a shortened two step grievance process (Article 51). Previous contracts can be found within the Library link.

New Employees PowerPoint Presentation and Information

As a Council, we primarily bargain (at the national level) issues that impact your working conditions. Past negotiations have resulted in flextime, credit hours, telework, and other workplace benefits. We also work with HUD constituents to advocate for HUD programs, and fight wasteful contracting out of federal work. Please keep in mind that we are a volunteer organization; we elect our leadership from our membership. So it's very important that the best employees become union members and activists. As a bargaining unit employee, you are eligible for membership. If you have not already done so, we encourage you to talk with your Local President. Locals are the key to enforcing the benefits we negotiate at a national level. Without strong and active Locals, the contract is just paper. Also, we encourage you to explore our website. Our new employee power point presentation can answer many of your questions about what the union does at HUD. And our bargaining page incudes information on the latest bargaining issues. Again, welcome to HUD. We care deeply about HUD and its mission. We believe that respect in the workplace results in productive and creative employees. We hope you do, too. Download our Welcome To HUD powerpoint presentation and contact your Local President (listed on our About Us page) if you have any questions! To join, fill out an SF-1187 and hand it to your Local President!



The Department of Labor June 2, 2006 Final Rule requires labor organizations subject to the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, the Foreign Service Act of 1980 and the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 to periodically inform their members of their rights as union members. The Final Rule will help ensure that federal union members are given basic understanding of: 1) rights as union members; 2) responsibilities of union officers.

Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 (CSRA) - The standards of conduct provisions in this Act, among other statutes, guarantee certain rights to members of unions representing Federal employees and impose certain responsibilities on officers of these unions.
read about the CSRA > | DOL 06/02/06 Federal Register Final Rule | DOL Fact Sheet | Council 222 Constitution/ByLaws | Foreign Service Act of 1980 | Congressional Accountability Act of 1995