• GSA Issues Final Rule on Payments in Kind

    GSA Issues Final Rule on Payments in Kind

    The General Services Administration has issued a final rule creating a new definition for “payment in kind” to account for waived or discounted registration fees provided by non-federal sponsors of meetings or functions in which an agency employee speaks, participates in a panel, or presents information. The rule notes that these are not payments in kind.

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conor dirks - FEDmanager - News for feds

Board Grants Jurisdiction but Dismisses Appeal of 2009 Removal

shaw bransford & roth case law update

A former federal employee’s confusion over what he was contesting in a disability retirement appeal did not entitle him to a finding of good cause for the lengthy delay in filing an appeal of his removal.

Claims Court Dismisses Secret Service Scheduling Complaint

shaw bransford & roth case law update

On March 17, 2016, the United States Court of Federal Claims dismissed, in part, a complaint brought by current and former Physical Security Specialists employed by the United States Secret Service, who claimed that the agency engaged in unlawful scheduling and recordkeeping practices in order to deny overtime pay.

Marijuana Still a Firing Offense for Feds

shaw bransford & roth case law update

The full Merit Systems Protection Board disagreed with an MSPB administrative judge regarding the reasonableness of the penalty of removal after an employee admitted to using marijuana.

MSPB Clarifies Constructive Suspension Jurisdiction

shaw bransford & roth case law update

The Merit Systems Protection Board vacated an administrative judge’s dismissal of a constructive suspension case after finding that the employee nonfrivolously alleged that she lacked a meaningful choice of whether to go to work against her doctor’s orders.

MSPB Clarifies Lack of Candor Charges

shaw bransford & roth case law update

A Veterans Affairs police officer was charged with lack of candor, among other charges and specifications, and although the Board sustained the employee’s removal, it reversed the charge of Lack of Candor, clarifying the law in the process.

MSPB Clarifies Law on Preappointment Reason for Termination

shaw bransford & roth case law update

The Merit Systems Protection Board reversed the termination of a Department of Veterans Affairs employee who was terminated after the Agency discovered that a current probation agreement bound the employee to inform prospective employers of his status and prohibited the use of computers with online services and the use of data encryption.

MSPB Overrules Three Prior Decisions

shaw bransford & roth case law update

A former employee’s second Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (“USERRA”) appeal regarding an alleged hostile work environment was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction by the Merit Systems Protection Board as it found that re-litigating the issues on appeal was barred by the doctrine of collateral estoppel.

MSPB: “Convincing Mosaic” Not a Legal Requirement for Proof of Discrimination

shaw bransford & roth case law update

The Merit Systems Protection Board (“MSPB”) clarified the legal requirements for proving an affirmative defense of EEO discrimination after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed that its use of the phrase “convincing mosaic,” considered a type of circumstantial evidence, was meant to be a metaphor, rather than a legal test.

OSC File Amicus Brief Against Elevated Burden of Proof in VA Whistleblower Case

shaw bransford & roth case law update

Attesting that it has a substantial interest in a legal issue presented by Salazar v. Department of Veterans Affairs, the Office of Special Counsel filed a “friend of the court,” or amicus curiae, brief on August 3, 2016, with the Merit Systems Protection Board arguing that an employee who makes a disclosure in his normal course of duties should not be subject to an elevated standard when attempting to prove a prima facie case of whistleblower retaliation.

OSC Files Amicus Briefs in Cases Regarding Heightened Evidentiary Burden

shaw bransford & roth case law update

On April 7, 2016, and April 12, 2016, the United States Office of Special Counsel filed an amicus curiae (“friend of the court”) brief in two separate cases: Acha v. Department of Agriculture, and Benton-Flores v. Department of Defense, respectively. The Acha case is currently pending before the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, while the Benton-Flores case is on remand to an MSPB administrative judge.

Supreme Court Stalemate in Public Sector Union Case

shaw bransford & roth case law update

The United States Supreme Court reached a 4-4 split in deciding whether non-union members could be charged compulsory fees via an agency shop agreement in public sector unions.

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