memorandum of agreement fy 2012 voluntary early retirement

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memorandum of agreement fy 2012 voluntary early retirement
MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT
FY 2012 VOLUNTARY EARLY RETIREMENT AUTHORITY (VERA) AND
VOLUNTARY SEPARATION INCENTIVE PAYMENT (VSIP) OPPORTUNITIES
This Agreement is entered into this j(Hfl day of August, 2011, among the Library of Congress (the
"Library"); and the Congressional Research Employees Association, IFPTE Local 75 ("CREA"); the
Library of Congress Employees' Union, AFSCME Local 2477; and the Library of Congress Professional
Guild, AFSCME Local 2910 (collectively, the "Unions").
Whereas the Library has notified the Unions that it intends to make available a Voluntary Early
Retirement Authority ("VERA") opportunity and a Voluntary Separation Incentive Payment (VSIP)
opportunity to employees who are in positions listed on Attachment A and who meet the eligibility
requirements on Attachment B, the parties agree to the following:
1. Lists of Eligible Bargaining Unit Employees: Within two (2) weeks of the signing of this agreement,
the Library will furnish each Union with a list of the names, organizational units, and Library of Congress
Entry on Duty (EOD) dates of its bargaining unit employees who occupy eligible positions under these
opportunities.
2. Notification to Bargaining Unit Employees: The Library will issue a Special Announcement describing
these VERA and VSIP opportunities. The Library will notify bargaining unit employees, in writing,
which may be via high priority email, of these opportunities. The Unions will have an opportunity to
review the announcement in advance. Such notification will include statements:
(a) that participation in the VERA and/or VSIP opportunity is strictly voluntary;
(b) that an employee who is eligible for VSIP: (i) does not need to be eligible for immediate
retirement or early retirement (i.e. VERA ) (see attachment B, Section 2); (ii) may be eligible for
immediate retirement; or (iii) may be eligible for early retirement (i.e., VERA);
(c) that the gross (pretax) amount of the payment under the VSIP opportunity shall be the lesser of
the employee's severance pay computed pursuant to 5 CFR 550.707, or Twenty-Five Thousand Dollars
($25,000); and
(d) providing contact information for employees who have questions about the VERA and/or VSIP
opportunities, including whether their positions are among the positions listed on Attachment A.
3. Briefing Sessions: Between August 22, 2011 and September 23, 2011, the Library will offer at least
four briefing sessions on these VERA and VSIP opportunities to all eligible employees. The Library will
make a good faith effort to ensure that employees are given time to attend at least one of these sessions.
In addition to these sessions, at least one session will be held at NLS, at least one session will be held at
NAVCC, and at least one session will be held at Landover.
4. Retirement Counseling: The Library and the Unions agree that the decision to retire is personal and
can be complex. All eligible employees contemplating these VERA and/or VSIP opportunities will be
strongly encouraged to attend one of the briefing sessions described in paragraph 3 above, and/or to use an
on-line retirement calculator at http://www.csrsfers.com/loc/ (using loc as login ID and as password) to
estimate their pensions. Employees who are considering applying for immediate retirement or for early
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retirement (i.e., VERA) will be encouraged to set up one-on-one retirement counseling which the Library
will offer to eligible employees upon request. A good faith effort will be made to schedule appointments
within two (2) work days from the request and to conduct the counseling within ten (10) work days. The
counseling will be conducted on Library-paid time between August 19, 2011 and October 3, 2011.
Eligible NLS, NAVCC, and Landover bargaining unit employees, upon request, shall be able to have their
counseling sessions via telephone, or to travel to the Madison Building during work time for their
counseling sessions.
5. Applications for VERA and/or VSIP: Applications for the VERA opportunity and for the VSIP
opportunity may be submitted from 8:00 a.m. on September 2, 2011, through 4:30 p.m. on October 3,
2011. Applications shall indicate a date of separation which must be no earlier than October 24, 2011, nor
later than November 3, 2011. Completed forms should be returned to the HRS Customer Service Center,
LM-107. Eligible NLS, NAVCC, and Landover bargaining unit employees, upon request, shall be able to
travel to the Madison Building during work time to submit their applications. The Unions will be given
the opportunity to review and comment on the application form(s) in advance. The Library will neither
encourage any employee to apply for VERA and/or VSIP, nor discourage any employee from applying for
VERA and/or VSIP.
6. Approval of VERA and VSIP applications: The maximum number of applications that will be
approved from each position or group of positions is listed on Attachment A. If more eligible employees
in a position or group of positions apply for VERA and/or VSIP than the maximum listed for that position
or group of positions on Attachment A, the Library will approve applications within that position or group
of positions in the order of the greatest length of service with the Library. The Library reserves the right to
further limit the number of approvals to prevent an adverse impact on the mission of the respective service
unit. In the event of such a limitation, length of service with the Library will be the sole criterion for
determining which eligible employees' applications will be approved within that position or group of
positions.
7. Notification to Applicants of Approval or Disapproval of Applications: Applicants will be advised by
October 11, 2011 whether their VERA and/or VSIP applications are approved or disapproved. Those
applicants whose applications are disapproved may have an interview by October 17, 2011 with the
Assistant or Associate Director/Division Chief or a designated management official of similar status, for
an explanation of the reason(s) for disapproval. On a non-precedential basis, the Library agrees that the
employee may be accompanied by his or her Union representative or by another person of the employee's
choosing. When the Library disapproves an application from a bargaining unit employee for a reason
other than ineligibility or relative seniority, the Library will inform the applicable Union that the
disapproval occurred, the organizational unit, the position, and the reason for the disapproval.
8. Withdrawal of Application: As this VERA opportunity and this VSIP opportunity are voluntary, an
employee who submits an application for either or both opportunities may, at any time prior to actual
separation, withdraw the application(s) without prejudice. In the event an employee withdraws an
application that has already been approved, the Library will normally approve the application of another
employee that was previously disapproved. If the Library approves such an application, the Library will
notify the employee as soon as practicable, which may be after October 11, 2011. The employee may then
modify his or her date of separation as long as it remains no earlier than October 24, 2011, nor later than
November 3, 2011.
9. Information Missing From Electronic Personnel Folder: If in the course of processing/separating an
employee who took advantage of this VERA opportunity and/or this VSIP opportunity, the Library
discovers that insufficient or incomplete information is in the employee's electronic Official Personnel
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Folder through no fault of the employee, the Library will make all reasonable efforts to obtain the missing
information from other sources, including NFC.
10. Reports to Unions: The Library will provide each Union with a weekly report beginning October 31,
2011, of the names and organizational units of those members of its bargaining unit who have retired
under this VERA opportunity and those who have retired or otherwise separated under this VSIP
opportunity.
11. Modifications Based Upon Library FY 2012 Budget: The Library has based its VERA-VSIP plan on
the funding level contained in the House Legislative Branch Appropriations FY 2012 mark. The Library
may make minor adjustments to the positions in this plan. The Library may also make more substantive
adjustments as the FY 2012 budget outlook becomes clearer. The Library will keep the Unions informed
of these adjustments and negotiate any impact and implementation issues to the extent required by
applicable law and/or collective bargaining agreement provisions.
12. Reopening Negotiations: Any Party may seek to reopen negotiations concerning implementation of
this VERA opportunity and/or this VSIP opportunity through January 31, 2012, should any unforeseen
adverse impact arise.
13. Frequently Asked Questions and Copies of this Agreement: The Library will post a .pdf version of this
Agreement on the same website to which the Library posts Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding
thesefopportunities. The Unions will be given the opportunity to review and comment on the FAQs in
advance.
For the Library of Congress
For AFSCME 2477
For AFSCME 2910

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