OPM Rescinds Guidance on Workforce EO Enforcement

OPM Office of Personnel Management

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) today issued a memo rescinding previous guidance it gave to Federal agencies to enforce certain provisions of three executive orders (EO) issued by President Trump regarding the Federal workforce, after those provisions were deemed unlawful by a U.S. District Court Judge last Saturday.

OPM is walking back a July 5 memo it provided to agencies instructing them to implement new policies regarding employee misconduct and poor performance, the use of paid time–including monitoring employees to ensure they “spend at least three-quarters of their paid time, measured each fiscal year, performing agency business”–and new collective bargaining rules.

Those policies–articulated in the three EOs–were struck down by Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson of the Federal district court for the District of Columbia, who found that they “undermine Federal employees’ right to bargain collectively” provided by the 1978 Civil Service Reform Act.

“OPM will fully comply with Judge Jackson’s Order and encourages other agencies to consult with their offices of human resources and general counsel to determine proper compliance measures based on the Order,” OPM Director Jeff Pon said in the Aug. 29 memo. “OPM will work with the U.S. Department of Justice to evaluate next steps in this litigation and will provide additional guidance to agencies as appropriate.”

The memo notes that provisions of the EOs that were not enjoined by Jackson’s decision remain in effect. “OPM guidance relating to the still effective provisions remains in place,” the agency said.

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