POStPlan office evaluations will still take place as originally planned
As announced earlier, encumbered EAS-18 offices that are evaluated under POStPlan in FY 2014, won’t be changed until FY 2016. These offices will be evaluated as originally intended under the POStPlan process in Fiscal Year’s 2014 and 2015, but the results of the evaluations won’t take place until FY-2016. This decision comes as welcome news to Postmasters who were upgraded to EAS-18 under the POStPlan process last year, thus allowing them additional time to remain at their current salary levels.
For the first time in recent history, the NPA Unit and proposed Corporate Indicator targets and thresholds will be available to Postmasters at the beginning of the Fiscal Year (FY-2014.) The files provide the finalized Unit and proposed Corporate Indicators weights and depths for each NPA scorecard, along with a brief description of all Indicator changes. Finalized Corporate Indicators will be provided upon approval by the Board of Governors.
The Performance Evaluation System (PES) for FY 2014 will open on Tuesday, October 1, 2014. Postmasters should confirm their profiles to begin the goal setting process, and evaluators must conduct one-on-one discussions. Information, materials and links pertaining to the PFP process, PES, and NPA can be found on the Blue Page by selecting Human Resources then Pay for Performance.
The above information was announced today by Chief Human Resources Officer and Executive Vice President Jeff Williamson. Mr Williamson led the cooperative effort between USPS groups and management association leaders to establish goals by the beginning of FY 2014. Please see the attachements below.
At the NAPUS convention this week, Postmaster General Pat Donahoe assured Postmasters that despite the downsizing the organization is facing, no one will lose his or her job:
Donahoe assured NAPUS members no one will lose their jobs as a result of downsizing and consolidations. “We will find a job for you somewhere in the organization,” he pledged. “We’ve never had to lay anyone off and we won’t do that. Are there bugs? Yes, there are, as we make these changes; there is a safety net down there.”
He said the Postal Service needs the authority to expand new products and services and get into areas of new opportunity, especially in the digital environment.“We need to continue to move along the way we’re going,” he stressed. “These things have to be addressed and resolved: get the legislation behind us, get the debt down to a reasonable amount and focus on the future going forward. We think there are big opportunities.”
The convention also heard from USPS COO Megan Brennan, who was slightly more conditional in her comments on the subject of job security:
“If we’re flexible and work together, we’ll ensure everyone has a landing spot,” she assured Postmasters. She talked about plans for having mini career conferences in certain geographic areas to identify opportunities for affected Postmasters.
Brennan encouraged everyone who is affected to update their profiles in eCareer and let their managers know what they would like to do in the short term. “There will be landing spots,” she pledged, “but I need you to be flexible and help us with that.”
At its convention this week, tha National Association of Postmasters of the United States (NAPUS) adopted “sweeping changes” to the organization’s structure in preparation for what’s likely to be a difficult future for postmasters:
During Tuesday morning’s business session, the NAPUS membership voted in sweeping changes to help the organization prepare for the future. Among the changes to the NAPUS Constitution approved by the convention body:
* Postmaster relief/replacements hired to operate a remotely managed post office are now designated active members, with the right to vote. Continue reading →
Leaders of the three management associations continue to meet with Postal Headquarters officials concerning the Fiscal Year 2014 Unit Goals. Headquarters has committed to work with the associations in an effort to ensure that the Unit Goals will be finalized by the beginning of Fiscal Year 2014. Postmaster Pay For Performance (PFP) ratings wil be applied to salary determinations for FY 2014 and FY 2015. A decision on PFP ratings applications to salaries for FY 2013 has not yet been determined.
Discussions with postal leaders also included OIC opportunities for POStPlan impacted Postmasters to vacant level 18 postions. These assingments should provide the impacted Postmasters with the needed experience to better qualify for vacant level 18 positions prior to the RIF effective date next year. Additonal discussions on POStPlan impacted Postmasters who will face possible RIF separations will continue between the Postmaster organizations and Postal Headquarters.
House Postal Hearing Update
On July 17, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee conducted a hearing on postal relief legislation, at which NAPUS offered testimony. In addition, the Committee intends to vote on a postal bill next Wednesday, July 24.
Today, National Association of Postmasters of the United States (NAPUS) President Robert Rapoza called for the U.S. Postal Service and the Congress to implement meaningful strategies to generate the revenue necessary to sustain the continuation of a universal postal system. In addition, Rapoza urged Congress to enact meaningful legislation to relieve the agency of an unfair retiree health burden imposed by Congress in 2006. Providing such relief would enable the nation’s Postal Service to continue to provide a universal and affordable postal system. The text entire text of the testimony can be accessed here. The hearing, in its entirety, may be viewed by linking on C-SPAN.
Before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the NAPUS president, who represents the nation’s Postmasters stated: “Revenue generation must be the primary focal point of legislative relief.” Rapoza continued that the Postal Service must “focus on revenue growth in all areas to help it retain its viability.” In his testimony, President Rapoza pointed out that the growing parcel market offers the Postal Service an important opportunity to raise funds: “The Postal Service must not simply ride the wave of the accelerating growth in the parcel market, but must capture a significant share of it.” He went on: “Post offices and their Postmasters must be able to adapt and innovate to meet this growing segment of the mail market. Indeed, post offices are uniquely situated to provide a secure, affordable and accessible point for parcel preparation, acceptance and delivery.” Rapoza concluded his reference to parcels by pointing out: “The physical presence of post offices provides a major competitive advantage” for the Postal Service.
NAPUS also highlighted another area in which the Postal Service may increase revenue. Governmental agencies, such as the Social Security Administration and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, are beginning to use government cash cards as an alternative to paper checks and direct-deposit. Post offices are uniquely positioned to provide a location for the distribution of paper and direct-deposit alternatives for income transfer programs, government annuities and disaster assistance. Postal employees are experienced in residency validation and identity verification. Rapoza stated, “The local post office could easily verify identity and be the location where such cards are reloaded.”
President Rapoza also called for Congress to remedy the unjust retiree health benefits prefunding requirement that is imposed on no other public or private entity in the United States. “One of the most damaging impediments to postal sustainability is the failure to address the unfair statutory requirement that the Postal Service prefund, within a limited 10-year period, 75 years of retiree health benefits.” Rapoza illustrated this fact in stating that “about 70% of the Postal Service’s recent losses are tied to this prefunding requirement.”
President Rapoza reaffirmed that NAPUS “joined with the Chairman and members of this committee in promoting S. 1789, the bipartisan and consensus postal relief bill” from the previous year. He concluded his testimony by pledging that NAPUS will assist the Chairman and the committee to ensure the U.S. Postal Service, the greatest and most efficient postal service in the world, continues to provide the products and services that Americans expect and deserve.
Posting Timeline Released for 2013 PTPO/RMPO Offices
Today, the Postal Service notified NAPUS of plans to post additional vacant offices that are scheduled to become 6-hour POStPlan offices. Offices on the next posting list will include those where POStPlan is implemented, making them 6 –hour offices on February 9, February 23, and March 9, 2013. The effective date for these postings will be May 4, 2013. A list of these offices will be provided as soon as it is available.
The Postal Service also released the timeline for a future posting which will occur between April 24 and June 29, 2013. Included with the timeline is eligibility and pay information that will be included on the vacancy announcements. A list of affected offices will be provided when it becomes available.
Postal Headquarters Responds to Management Association’s Concerns
In response to concerns raised by the three management associations (NAPUS, NAPS and the League,) Postal Headquarters officials announced adjustments to the DUO process, which will be rolled out this Thursday, January 24, 2013. Adjustments will include changes to the DUO Financial Worksheets in CSDC, as well as an approval process through the Area Vice President.
Leaders of the three management associations have been involved in a series of meetings with top Postal officials on issues concerning DUO implementations that were being done without following the proper guidelines and failed to show cost savings. One of the most important adjustments to the DUO process will now require a signoff by the Area Vice President, which should ensure that guidelines are followed and cost savings estimates are valid.
As previously posted on the NAPUS website, on January 11, 2013, the USPS announced a temporary suspension of DUO implementations, pending adjustments to the process. With the roll out of the new process on January 24th, 2013, DUO activities will be resumed; except in offices that have rural routes that will be counted in the national rural count, where the DUO moratorium will be in effect. Updates to the DUO process will be posted on the NAPUS website as it becomes available. DUO Suspension
On Monday, League President Mark Strong and NAPUS President Bob Rapoza sent a joint letter to USPS Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President, Megan Brennan, requesting a meeting to discuss the impact that the Retail Access Optimization Initiative (RAOI) may have on Postmasters whose offices are on the study list. Specifically, the leaders of the two Postmaster organizations are asking to meet with members of the Postal Service senior management team to discuss minimizing or avoiding the impact that RIF may have on Postmasters whose offices may be discontinued.
RIF Avoidance and minimization strategy actions listed in the ELM 354.23 include voluntary early retirements, voluntary early retirement incentives, voluntary reassignments and other actions that can be considered for impacted employees. The two presidents reminded Ms Brennan that Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe said that he would work with the Postmaster organizations as he had worked with other RIF impacted employees. For more information on this and other important news from President Rapoza, click here http://www.napus.org/president-rapozas-updates/.
We have received several inquiries from Exempt status Postmasters who lost employees as a result of Delivery Unit Optimization (DUO) and are re-classified to non-exempt if they manage less than two full-time equivalent employees, but the Form 50 isn’t processed to change them to the correct status for several months. Listed below is the USPS Headquarters response to the FLSA status question and their response on when salary protection begins for Postmasters who are downgraded as a result of DUO.
When staffing conditions in a Post Office do not meet criteria for FLSA-exempt status, the Postmaster’s FLSA status becomes non-exempt. If the FLSA status of the job changes, this should be brought to the attention of the appropriate management authorities promptly so that FLSA status may be adjusted timely, within one or two pay periods of the Postmaster no longer meeting the criteria of an exempt status. We recommend that Postmasters coordinate closely with their supervisors to ensure that work beyond 40 in a pay week is authorized expressly. This will help prevent potential problems. Postmasters should document overtime hours they work since DUO implementation. They should also document the dates such hours are worked, and they should furnish this material to local management for review and determination if there are concerns about pay.
Salary protection for DUO impacted Postmasters begins on the Form 50 effective date of the downgrade.
Next week, members of the two Postmaster organization pay talks teams will resume discussions with Postal Service representatives. The meetings will include discussions on pay, benefits, leave and changes to the ELM that may impact Postmasters. The Postmaster organizations and the Postal Service agreed to extend the October 5, 2011 deadline.
From the National Association of Postmasters of the US:
In yesterday’s monthly meeting with Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe, NAPUS President Bob Rapoza discussed Voluntary Early Retirements (VERs), Incentives and adding years of service as possibilities to help ease the financial burdens of the USPS. While many options are being considered as the Postal Service attempts to reduce the number of on roll employees, President Rapoza suggested that VERs, Incentives and adding years of service should be strongly considered as part of the process.
Postmaster General Donahoe is scheduled to address nearly 1,200 attendees at the NAPUS National Convention in San Juan, Puerto Rico next week. Attendees are hopeful that the PMG may provide a preview of a “major announcement” that is scheduled to be released on September 15.
In a story published in the Washington Post, the White House plans to present a USPS financial rescue plan in coming weeks. The proposed plan would be included in the Obama administrations deficit reduction package. The White House is requesting that Congress provide the USPS with a 90-day extension to pay mandatory annual retirement payments of more than $5 billion.
In a related story, the PMG told Senators that the Postal Service could lose up to $10 billion by the end of the fiscal year.