Ohio National Guard federal technicians back at work
Tuesday, October 08, 2013 11:18 AM
COLUMBUS, Ohio - Nearly all of the 1,060 Ohio Air National Guard federal technicians and 759 Ohio Army National Guard technicians furloughed Oct. 1 as a result of the federal government shutdown were recalled Monday and Tuesday to resume their jobs.Current Defense Department guidance does not allow for a blanket recall of all technicians under the Pay Our Military Act (POMA), signed into law on Sept. 30, but allows the recall of civilians who provide direct morale, well-being and readiness support to members of the armed forces. Using that guidance, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel determined that employees who met certain criteria could return to work.
The recalled employees include those who perform health care, behavioral health and suicide prevention activities; Family readiness; maintenance and repair; human resources, payroll and some administration; acquisition program oversight; contract logistics; financial management; intelligence functions; and supply chain management.
All but six furloughed Ohio National Guard technicians were determined to meet the current recall criteria. Job categories of the small number who were not recalled include auditing and internal review functions.
Defense Department officials said an act approving retroactive pay for furloughed employees could be approved soon, pending a Senate vote. However, those who remain on furlough will not be paid until there is a Fiscal Year 2014 budget appropriation.
"Many important activities remain curtailed while the shutdown goes on," Hagel said in a statement released Oct. 5. "Civilians under furlough face the uncertainty of not knowing when they will next receive a paycheck. I strongly support efforts in Congress to enact legislation to retroactively compensate all furloughed employees. And I will continue to urge Congress to fulfill its basic responsibilities to pass a budget and restore full funding for the Department of Defense and the rest of the government."
According to National Guard Bureau officials, there is no change to previously published guidance on military duty statuses, but that guidance from the Defense Department is anticipated within the next week for the conduct of Non-Excepted annual training, Non-Excepted U.S. Code Title 32 Full-Time National Guard Duty and inactive duty training, also known as monthly drills or unit training assemblies. Most Ohio National Guard units that were scheduled to conduct IDT last weekend were required to postpone the training until November or later.