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PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE

July 2019

President, Tony Pizza

At the June meeting, we had a demonstration of the Chapter 190 website, created and maintained by our treasurer Carl Bailey. There's a lot of information that you can access if you go to the site at narfe190.org. Just checkout the topics listed on the left side, where there’s information about actions to take when an annuitant or spouse passes, what’s needed to get a base pass, links to many government sites, and much more. Have a look.

Next month we’ll be having the July BBQ with tri-tip and chicken entrees. We're expecting Linda Ingram, Federation President, Yoggi Riley, Federation Executive Vice President, and Stephen Smith, District 8 VP. There is no presentation, except for brief remarks from our guests. Mostly it’s time to socialize.

There’s progress on a pay raise for employees. On June 25, the House of Representatives passed the fiscal year 2020 appropriations bill, H.R. 3351, with a 224-196 vote. The legislation provides federal employees with a modest, but much needed, average pay raise of 3.1 percent, pushing Congress one step closer to blocking the president's FY20 budget recommendation to freeze federal pay.  We can only hope the Senate agrees.

The appropriations legislation also blocks funding for the administration's OPM reorganization plan, including the transfer of any OPM functions to the Office of Management and Budget or General Services Administration. The proposed merger puts these functions at serious risk of not receiving resources necessary to properly serve the federal community. The plan also seeks to transfer OPM's personnel policy functions to the Executive Office of the President, subjecting employee policy decisions to political influence from not only the current administration but also all those to come. NARFE has continually opposed the plan, including in May testimony from NARFE National President Ken Thomas at a hearing before a House Subcommittee, where he noted major concerns with the proposal. Leading lawmakers, both Republican and Democrat, have expressed serious concerns with the plan.

Although my heritage is Italian, I never learned to speak the language. So I bought one of those CDs that teach you Italian in your sleep. During the night, the CD skipped. Now I can only stutter in Italian.