Here we go again. You can’t make this stuff up. From Caroline May in the Daily Caller:
In a response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request from Americans for Limited Government, the Internal Revenue Service revealed this month that 201 of its employees work full-time on union activities.
“A lot of people are not aware that under federal law, a federal agency is allowed to enter into a collective bargaining agreement with a union that has provisions where employees of the agency, in this case the IRS, are allowed to do union work on the taxpayer’s time and get paid for it,” ALG president and Nathan Mehrens explained in an interview with The Daily Caller.
As Office of Personnel Management documents explain, the performance of union duties instead of official government business is allowed, as it is a part of the government’s collective bargaining system.
“‘Official time,’ authorized by 5 U.S.C. 7131, is a core component of the federal government’s carefully crafted collective bargaining system,” OPM explains in its most recent “Official Time Usage in the Federal Government” report. “Official time is time spent by Federal employees performing representational work for a bargaining unit in lieu of their regularly assigned work. It allows unions to satisfy their duty of fair representation to members and non-members alike.
Seriously? Yes. The article goes on to note that
“in 2011 bargaining employees at all federal agencies spent a total of 3,395,187 hours performing representational work, at a cost of approximately $155 million.”
There are two bills in Congress now to end this outrage. Oh, and one more thing. Guess when this foolishness started? That’s right, during the residency of the King of the Useful Idiots, James Earl Carter.