Federal agencies caught spending millions to support unions with taxpayers’ money

The Internal Revenue Service isn’t the only federal agency where hundreds of employees do union business full-time on the public’s dime.

“Taxpayers spent around $156 million on federal employees who did no federal work at all,” said Nathan Mehrens, president of Americans for Limited Government.

Watchdog.org reported last week that union business — oxymoronically classified as “official time” — is subsidized by the IRS. Mehrens uncovered similar behavior at other agencies.

At the IRS, 286 full-time staffers worked exclusively for the National Treasury Employees Union while receiving government paychecks in 2012 (the latest year for which statistics were available).

Mehrens’ group exposed several other agencies that fully fund union business with public money. These include:

Veterans Affairs. The scandal-scarred VA has more than 250 employees working full-time for the American Federation of Government Employees, the National Association of Government Employees, the National Federation of Federal Employees and the Service Employees International Union.

“At least one of these 250 doesn’t even report to work at a department facility, but rather ‘teleworks’ from a private AFGE office in D.C.,” Mehrens noted.

Department of Transportation. Some 35 DOT employees exclusively on “official time” receive average annual salaries of $138,000. Some receive more than $170,000.

Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA pays more than $1.6 million per year to employees who work for their union full-time.

National Labor Relations Board. The NLRB has two employees working for their union full-time. Each makes more than $100,000 per year.

“Under collective bargaining agreements between the agencies and the unions, the work that these employees do on ‘official time’ is controlled by the union, not the agency,” Mehrens explained.

Read more from Watchdog.org.

 

Kenric Ward GET AUTHOR RSS FEED

Kenric Ward is a seasoned journalist with experience as a daily newspaper reporter, newsroom editor and online political writer. Kenric has worked at two Pulitzer Prize-winning newspapers and numerous state and national awards for investigative articles ranging from business to education to politics.

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