Subcommittee on Government Operations to Examine the Administration’s War on a Merit Based Civil Service

May 20, 2019
Press Release

 

Washington, D.C. (May 20, 2019)—On Tuesday, May 21, 2019, the Subcommittee on Government Operations will hold a hearing on “The Administration’s War on a Merit Based Civil Service.”

 

WHERE:  2154 Rayburn House Office Building

 

WHEN:  Tuesday, May 21, 2019

 

TIME:  2:00 p.m.

 

A livestream will be broadcast here

 

PURPOSE & BACKGROUND

 

  • The purpose of this hearing is to examine the Administration’s proposal to eliminate funding from OPM and move its offices and operations into the Department of Defense (DOD), GSA, and the Executive Office of the President.

 

  • OPM serves as the federal government’s chief human resources agency, helps to ensure that merit principles are incorporated in federal hiring practices and government operations, and administers retirement benefits and healthcare and insurance programs for more than 2.7 million active employees and 2.6 million annuitants, survivors, and family members.

 

  • President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget request eliminates funding for OPM, requests $50 million “for costs incurred transitioning Office of Personnel Management functions to the General Services Administration,” and an additional $1 million to merge the OPM Office of the Inspector General (IG) into the GSA IG.  

 

  • The Administration failed to provide many documents requested by the Committee prior to the hearing, including basic legal and quantitative information.  The administration provided no information on the controversial parts of the plan, such as eliminating the statutory independence of civil service policy functions.  On March 22, the Subcommittee sent a letter to Acting Director Weichert to request 13 categories of documents related to the reorganization of OPM.  On April 29, the Subcommittee received only 387 pages total from OPM, most of which related only to the Administration’s move of National Background Investigations Bureau from OPM to DOD. 

 

  • On April 4, 2019, Chairman Connolly and Chairman Elijah E. Cummings led House Democrats in a letter urging the House Committee on Appropriations to deny funds for the implementation of the Administration’s reorganization plan and the proposed merger.

 

WITNESSES

 

Panel One

 

The Honorable Margaret Weichert

Deputy Director of Management

Office of Management and Budget

Acting Director

Office of Personnel Management

 

Triana McNeil

Acting Director of Strategic Issues

Government Accountability Office

 

Norbert E. Vint

Acting Inspector General

Office of Personnel Management Office of Inspector General

 

Panel Two

 

J. David Cox, Sr.

National President

American Federation of Government Employees

 

Ken Thomas

National President

National Active and Retired Federal Employees

 

Linda Springer

Former Director of the Office of Personnel Management

 

116th Congress