Category Archives: Legislative – Federal Blog

PRESS RELEASE: 005-2019

CONTACT: EDWARD HOLLAND, Public Relations Officer
hollandnmd@aol.com / #301.848.3476

“BREAKING NEW”

AFGE President Jeffrey David Cox Sr will be joining us at the 2019 Biennial Conference. Come and here from a fellow fighter!

“…The American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal employee union with more than 700,000 members, has also taken issue with [the President’s] claim. ‘They are eager to get back to work,’ AFGE President Jeffrey David Cox Sr. said in a statement earlier on in the shutdown … AFGE has also sued the government over the shutdown, saying it’s illegal to make people work without pay. Employees who are considered ‘essential’ to the functioning of the government ― such as air traffic controllers and people who work in law enforcement ― continue to work during the shutdown but will not get paid until after it’s over…”

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/trump-shutdown-furloughed-workers_us_5c2fc50ce4b0bcb4c25bab28

The National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) was founded in 1921 with the mission of protecting the earned rights and benefits of America’s active and retired federal workers. One of the largest federal employee/retiree organizations, NARFE represents the interests of 5 million current and future federal and postal annuitants, spouses and survivors.

Summary of Highlights from NARFE/MD Board Meeting – Feb. 5, 2019, Bowie Comfort Inn

Maryland Federation of NARFE – Patricia Farmer, Secretary, NARFE/MD

  • Opening: President Dr. Gary Roundtree Sr. called the meeting to order at 9:34 a.m.
  • Bowie-Crofton President Frank Lee introduced new member Charles Smith who was affected by the recent partial shutdown. His shutdown story was featured in the Washington Post. As a result of the affect the shutdown had on him, Charles decided to retire and is waiting for his papers to go through.
  • President Dr. Gary Roundtree Sr. went over the Federation’s reimbursement policy for those attending the National Legislative Training Conference (NLTC), March 10-13, at the Hilton Mark Center in Virginia.
  • First Vice President and Legislative Director Dr. Sudha Haley talked about the Crusade to Capitol Hill on March 13. This is the day the NLTC attendees from NARFE/MD will visit Senators and Representatives on Capitol Hill.
  • Guest Speaker John Koskinen, former IRS Commissioner, spoke to attendees and gave insights into his management style during his career. He made sure employees at all levels knew him and had the opportunity to ask questions and let him know about problems at any level. He stressed that the ethos in an organization is very important. As the lead for Y2K in the United States, and he subsequently became the lead in the world. As a result of his management and the people he worked closely with in government and the private sector, there was no disaster when we rolled over to the year 2000. He mentioned a few glitches, one in Japan and the other in the United States.
  • William Guthrie, President Chapter 1260, Southern Prince George’s, was inducted as a Board member by President Dr. Roundtree.
  • Luncheon Speaker was Colonel William Pallozzi, Maryland Secretary of State Police. As such, he is a member of Governor Hogan’s cabinet. He is responsible for the 23 Barracks of State Troopers within Maryland. His purview also includes an aviation section and the largest crime laboratory in the state. Maryland State Police began in 1921 and is now 98 years old. In keeping with its three missions, there is a Traffic Bureau, a Criminal Investigation Bureau and a Support Services Bureau. Colonel Pallozzi stressed that it is a dangerous, noble profession. The Polar Bear Plunge, sponsored by the State Police, is the largest single day fundraiser in the world. There are 152 Police Departments in the state of Maryland.
  • New Region II Vice President Kathy Adams gave her report. Region II includes Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. RVP Adams reported items from the National Executive Board (NEB) meeting, including the existence of four new committees at the National level: Membership Committee; Non-Dues Revenue Committee; Building Committee (all reasonable options, even sale of the HQ building, which is large, with only 50 employees currently); and 2021 – 100th Anniversary Centennial Committee (Kathy Adams is Chair; Dr. Sudha Haley is one of committee volunteers).
  • Dr. Bruce Fowler, Chair of the Federal Legislative Committee, said that the 2019 Profiles in Civil Service, Golden Edition, should be out in March and the NARFE/MD delegation from the NLTC will be taking copies to Capitol Hill to keep reminding Congress what federal employees do every day for this country.
  • Paul Schwartz, Chair of the State Legislative Committee stressed the importance of NARFE/MD having a large contingent going to Annapolis on Feb. 13 for the hearing on HB 327, which would decouple Maryland from Federal taxes and allow taxpayers to itemize at the state level. He also urged members to give to MD-PAC because it allows us to meet/greet our state legislators and share with them our legislative interests. Toll free phone number for General Assembly: 1-800-492-7122. Tell the operator who you are and your organization and that you support HB 327 and why. Also, you can go to LWV.org to get a phone number and email address for a specific lawmaker. (LWV is the League of Women Voters.)
  • Second Vice President and Membership Director Ed Reed handed out a Membership packet and exercise to each Chapter President. The exercise is an effort to recruit US Postal Employees; packets include 20 F135 applications, 18 M2 prospective member forms, the new membership manual, and three packets for US Post Offices.
  • The Board voted to accept the proposal to amend the National Bylaws to ensure fairness in the NARFE ballot used in voting.
  • Scholarship Chair Eleanor Kaul said that FEEA/NARFE Scholarships have been reduced to $700. There is a new Memorandum of Understanding between FEEA and NARFE due March 25.
  • Alzheimer’s Chair Eleanor Kaul reported that Maryland NARFE is Region II’s second largest donor to NARFE Alzheimer’s Research. The three top donor chapters are: 969 St. Mary’s County/$5,500; 2274 Ocean Area/$1,577; and 1127 Rockville/$1,500.
  • Co-Chair Larry Walton gave an update on the 2019 Biennial Conference, May 5-7, 2019 in at Dunes Manor, Ocean City, Md. Dunes Manor is located at 28th Street, in the heart of Ocean City. Oceanfront rooms are available all week for $98.35. Vendor Chair for the Conference Eleanor Kaul has sent letters to 16 vendors, inviting them to rent tables at the conference. Several vendors have taken ads in the conference program and are sponsoring meals. Registration fee is $50, which includes two breakfasts and two lunches. The Installation Banquet is separate at $45. For details, contact your Chapter President who received the Call Letter to the 2019 Biennial Conference. Also, on Feb. 8, the Maryland Federation Secretary Pat Farmer sent information on the May Conference to each member of the Maryland Federation from the NARFE Email System.
  • Programs Chair Edward Holland has been busy securing speakers for the May conference; among them are Barbara Sido, NARFE Executive Director; James Marshall, NARFE Federal Benefits Institute; John Wobensmith, Maryland Secretary of State; and many other speakers from State and Federal government and beyond.
  • Public Relations Chair Edward Holland stated that his goal is to tell the story of NARFE and get us in the fight.
  • Adjournment: 2:54 p.m.

SHUTDOWN: SETTING THE RECORD STRAIGHT

February 8, 2019

At the Maryland Federation Board Meeting on February 5, there were several members who asked what NARFE did during the partial government shutdown. Our Maryland President Dr. Gary Roundtree Sr. made National President (NatPres) Ken Thomas aware of these concerns through our Region II Vice President KathyAdams. In response, National President Thomas has provided a list of what he and NARFE did during that time.  See below.  There is also email following from the Region II Vice President and from a member expressing his concerns.

Setting the Record Straight

During the partial government shutdown:

NARFE’s natpres’ partial government shutdown statements were quoted in more than fifty media pieces distributed by national media outlets and carried by the Washington Post, NPR, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, UnionTrack, Federal News Network, Federal Times, Huffington Post, Government Matters, and others;

The natpres participated in a live thirty minute round table shutdown discussion with Maryland’s two U.S. senators carried by several media outlets including WBAL;

The natpres was interviewed and participated in a live fifty minute Mike Causey government shutdown radio show carried by WTOP and the Federal News Network;

The natpres was interviewed and filmed about the government shutdown for forty-five minutes by reporters from local CBS affiliate WUSA-TV9 and was the lead in story for the 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. news hours, and for two additional TV stories on the government shutdown;

The natpres was interviewed about the government shutdown during a live broadcast by WMAU;

The natpres with Jessica Klement conducted the forty minute “NARFE Shutdown: Get Answers-Take Action” webinar broadcast to all NARFE members;

The natpres issued/tweeted eleven government shutdown related messages;

The natpres was instrumental in the NARFE/FEEA shutdown emergency grant program which distributed more than $41,000 to over four hundred furloughed or excepted service government employees/NARFE members;

The natpres contacted the District of Columbia and Maryland federations’ presidents to ask their members’ assistance during the shutdown with distributing NARFE related material at Metro stations and government facilities in their area; and, unlike my good friend Mr. Cox at AFGE,

The NARFE national president was not arrested, dragged out of the Hart Senate Office Building in handcuffs, taken to D.C. Jail, and bonded out for failure to comply with a lawful order to vacate a federal building. Guess I missed an opportunity.

Ken Thomas

From: Kathleen Adams
Sent: Wednesday, February 6, 2019 7:11 PM
To: Kenneth Thomas
Cc: Barbara Sido; Kathryn Hensley
Subject: Fwd: Clarification

Hi Ken:  I spent Monday and Tuesday with the Maryland Federation and some felt NARFE missed a great opportunity.  Please see attached.

Kathy Adams

RVP Region II

Sent from my iPhone

Begin forwarded message from NARFE/MD member:

Date: February 6, 2019 at 5:47:16 PM EST

Subject: Clarification

Gary,

After yesterday’s session, I thought it important to clarify something with you. When I raised the issue of the rally to support the feds subjected to the government shutdown, I was not in any way referring to you.. It was not your responsibility and it is important to me that you understand that I was not talking about you in any way.

I was talking specifically about the national president and for good reason. The attendees at the rally were not identified as Democrats or Republicans; they were all impacted federal employees. They were all also active feds, the very group of people we want to recruit for membership and about whom we continually complain we can’t reach because we can’t get access within the federal agency.

We missed a golden opportunity to have NARFE join in as a partner with AFGE, NTEU, NFFE and other participating federal organizations who support the shutdown victims and who had their presidents address the massive turnout. We were not there and, regardless of whatever we have done as on organization in support of these feds, nothing would have provided NARFE with the notoriety that participation by our president would have.

It was an opportunity to get our name the exposure needed to attract new members and our national president was likely in Alexandria instead of joining with the other organization presidents to make us known among all of those current federal employees participating in the rally or watching the coverage by the news media..

 I find any missed opportunity to be disturbing.

 Kathy – I have no problem if this is shared with the national president and I hope, if you do, he finds it constructive.

Paul

Updated: 2019-02-09

Profiles in Civil Service Flip Book

Profiles in Civil Service Flip Book has been updated to the 2018 version.  Please take a look on the right column!

Federal Legislative Blog

National Legislative Training and MD Federation’s Crusade to Capitol Hill:  March, 2017

The following photos were taken at the National Legislative Training and MD Federation’s Crusade to Capitol Hill in March, 2017.  The documents include a summary of events; agenda; and listing of FLC members assigned to MD Congressional Districts.

NARFE HQ Form re MD Federations' Crusade to Capitol Hill
MD Fed. Crusade to Cap. Hill 3-15-17 Agenda
MD Fed. Crusade to Cap. Hill 3-15-17 Delegates