Workforce

Senate panel advances third MSPB nominee

by Andrey_Popov shutterstock ID 248796937 Office Chair With A Vacant Sign At Work Place 

The Merit System Protection Board is one step closer to getting a quorum to clear its backlog of more than 2,000 appeals.

The agency has been operating without a quorum for more than two years and without any Senate-confirmed leadership at all since March.

The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee advanced the nomination of B. Chad Bungard to serve as an MSPB member June 19. With that approval, the Senate now has three candidates for the MSPB awaiting confirmation votes. Dennis Dean Kirk was tapped to lead the board and Julia Akins Clark was nominated to serve as a member.

MSPB's three-member board reviews federal workforce merit principles and adjudicates appeals. Its mission is to protect civil servants from political interference, cronyism and discrimination. The board has lacked a quorum since Jan. 7, 2017, leaving it unable to issue decisions that require a vote.

While MSPB's cadre of administrative judges can issue rulings, these only take effect if there is no appeal from either side. As of the end of May, there is a backlog of 2,151 appeals facing the agency.

About the Author

Adam Mazmanian is executive editor of FCW.

Before joining the editing team, Mazmanian was an FCW staff writer covering Congress, government-wide technology policy and the Department of Veterans Affairs. Prior to joining FCW, Mazmanian was technology correspondent for National Journal and served in a variety of editorial roles at B2B news service SmartBrief. Mazmanian has contributed reviews and articles to the Washington Post, the Washington City Paper, Newsday, New York Press, Architect Magazine and other publications.

Click here for previous articles by Mazmanian. Connect with him on Twitter at @thisismaz.


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