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IFPTE Mobilizes Members on Senate National Defense Authorization Act

The Senate considered S. 2943 this week, their version of the Fiscal Year 2017 (FY17) National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

This week the Senate considered S. 2943, their version of the Fiscal Year 2017 (FY17) National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). While there are several issues of importance to IFPTE members included in the bill, two specific issues mobilized a response from IFPTE DoD Locals. Members asked their Senators to support the following proposed amendments:

1. JTR Per Diems and Lodging Cuts. Trying to build on the success of Hawaii Representative Mark Takaiís amendment that was added to the House bill and puts in place a full repeal of the damaging per diems/lodging cuts policy unilaterally put in place by the DoD, Senator Mazie Hirono--also from Hawaii--filed an amendment to do the same thing within the Senate bill.

As it stands now, the Senate NDAA will allow for DoD components to seek a waiver from the service they fall under from the new JTR policy, with at least some Navy shipyard workers guaranteed to get the waiver. However, recognizing that IFPTE's legislative goal is still a full and complete repeal, which is in the House bill, Senator Hirono has filed an amendment to the Senate NDAA seeking a full repeal.

While it remains unclear if there will be a vote on this amendment, IFPTE Locals mobilized in support of it to gain as many cosponsors as possible, as it will strengthen our ability to advocate for a full repeal when the House and Senate conference the two bills later this year.

IFPTE Locals Rapid Response: Contact your Senators and ask them to cosponsor Amendment #4393 to S. 2943, the National Defense Authorization Act.

2. Repeal of A-76 Moratorium, Gutting the Contractor Inventory Reporting Requirement. Section 806 of the Senate NDAA (S. 2943) repeals the current prohibition on public-private competitions or the A-76 moratorium for DoD that has been in place since FY10. This moratorium is in place until such time as DoD meets certain criteria, including providing a meaningful contractor inventory of service contractors so that they are accounted for similarly to the way civilian employees and the military are accounted for.

The FY10 NDAA A-76 prohibition was based largely on DoD IG and GAO reports finding fatal flaws on a systemic basis with the A-76 process that disadvantaged the government workforce. In addition, there have also been questions about whether actual savings have been found from A-76 competitions. Here is the Schatz/Brown Amendment, along with an AFGE/Schatz summary of the amendment (many thanks to AFGE for leading on this).

Also, Section 820 of the same bill (S. 2943) essentially guts the contractor inventory to make it only apply to those hired as staff augmentees directly by DoD, which is basically nobody because almost all service contractors are hired through service contractors, even contractors working at the Pentagon.

In response to these provisions, Hawaii Senator Brian Schatz and Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown have drafted an amendment that would strike the A-76 repeal (Section 806) and the contractor inventory roll-back (Section 820) to keep current law in place. This is extremely important to all civilian employees, but we believe it is also especially important to the organic industrial base such as depots and shipyards, as well as arsenals and ammunition plants.

IFPTE DoD Locals Rapid Response: Locals emailed their Senators offices requesting that lawmakers add their names as cosponsors to the Schatz/Brown Amendment #4438 to strip Sections 806 and 820 from S. 2943.

S. 2943 NDAA, JTR Per Diems and Lodging Cuts

S. 2943 NDAA, Gutting the Contractor Inventory Reporting Requirement

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