Trump’s EPA To Lay Off 8% Of Its Employees In Next 2 Months

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will lay off more than 1,200 employees over the next two months by offering buyouts, documents obtained by E&E News indicate.

E&E News obtained an email from the National Treasury Employees Union to its members at EPA stating EPA plans to buy out 1,227 positions, 655 of which will be from agency headquarters in Washington, D.C. EPA employees could apply for buyouts starting last Thursday and must submit their decisions by July 26. The layoffs will occur over the next two months.

EPA will offer employees up to $25,000 in cash in exchange for them leaving. This is a standard practice for federal employees that allows them to retire early and still qualify for full benefits.

The largest number of buyouts, 183, will come from the Office of Research and Development. EPA will also offer buyouts to 98 employees at the Office of Administration and Resource Management, and make the same offer to 94 workers at the Office of Land and Emergency Management.

EPA will also offer buyouts to eligible employees at regional offices spread through the country. The email indicated EPA is expected to offer more buyouts after the initial 1,200.

“That’s a far cry from the 3,200 positions mentioned by Mr. Pruitt and the White House,” reads the Wednesday email obtained by E&E News. “That means that additional offers are likely in FY 2018, which starts on October 1…Perhaps all hope is not lost for those of you who want to bail.”

President Donald Trump’s “skinny” budget would ultimately reduce EPA’s 15,000-employee workforce by more than 3,000 positions. Trump called for a 25 percent reduction in EPA’s workforce and a 31 percent cut to the agency’s budget.

The union suspects the purpose of the buyouts is to eliminate jobs the Trump administration does not consider necessary.

The EPA’s acting chief financial officer distributed a memo in May outlining plans to buy out employees to reduce the agency’s workforce to comply with an executive order from Trump. EPA began offering buyouts in April after Trump issued an executive order to eliminate waste and redundancies in federal agencies.

Paying EPA employees to leave their jobs isn’t anything new. Under former President Barack Obama, the EPA paid more than $11 million in incentives to compel 436 employees to voluntarily leave their jobs in 2014. This was done to reduce payroll expenses.

EPA employees have been some of the most hostile to the new administration’s policies. An anonymous EPA communications career employee told Pro-Publica in January that “more than a few friends were ‘coming to work in tears’ each morning as they grappled with balancing the practical need to keep their jobs with their concerns for the issues they work on.”

Trump pledged during his campaign to get rid of the agency “in almost every form,” leaving only “little tidbits left.” Many of EPA employees were so scared of Scott Pruitt, Trump’s pick to head the agency, they called their senators to complain.

Read more at Daily Caller

Comments (5)

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    Euthanize them.

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    Talk to anyone that has been in a private sector merger and the EPA
    cut of 8% is chump change . Given the undertow caused to the economy by the EPA and the duplication of effort at the state level
    it is astounding it isn’t triple the amount .
    Why not just give individual states 1/2 the savings and let them look after things themselves ? Centralized government is a lobbyist’s dream and a place to hid pork . It is obvious the distain the fifth estate holds politicians in Washington . For good reason .
    Break it up and reduce the waste and layers of bureaucracy .

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    THERE IS NO duplication at the state level.
    Every state in the Union Uses the EPA labs and scientific Pros which they do not have access to.
    Every state in the Union uses the EPA for cover from the State political assaults which local agencies do not have the Finances to fight.

    Why do we have an EPA, anyway?

    Now that we have a lobotomized Senate & House, and a tottering old demented Don in the White House,
    we can all BREATH more deeply because past Congresses with brains thought about what they were doing…..
    Why do we have an EPA, anyway?
    1. Air
    Before the government began to rein in pollution from smokestacks and tailpipe, dense, dark and even choking smog was a frequent occurrence in American cities and towns.
    In 1948,
    spectators at a football game in Donora, Pennsylvania couldn’t see the players or the ball because of smog from a nearby coal-fired zinc smelter; 20 people died.
    In Los Angeles in the 1960s, smog often hid the mountains.
    The Clean Air Act of 1970 gave EPA the authority to regulate harmful air pollutants.
    One of the most dramatic success stories was lead, which was widely used in paint but also in gasoline to improve engine performance.
    EPA estimated that more than 5,000 Americans were dying every year from heart disease linked to lead poisoning; many children were growing up with diminished IQ.
    ** By 1974, the EPA began a phase out of lead from gasoline. The gradual effort took until 1995 to completely end the practice, but the result has been a measurable 75 percent drop in blood lead levels in the public.
    Thanks to Clean Air Act rules,
    the levels of many other toxic substances in our air, such as mercury, benzene, and arsenic, have also dropped substantially.
    A major update to the law in 1990 allowed EPA to reduce sulfur dioxide emissions from power plants, the main cause of acid rain. Life has begun to come back in acidified lakes in the Adirondacks.

    Complying with EPA’s air pollution rules has been costly
    —they’re the biggest burden the agency imposes on the economy.

    But the federal Office of Management and Budget, analyzing data collected from 2004 to 2014, estimates that the health and other benefits of the rules exceeded the costs
    The Cuyahoga River
    was once one of the most polluted rivers in the United States as represented by the multitude of times it has caught fire, a recorded number of thirteen starting in 1868.
    The most potent blaze occurred in 1952 which caused over $1.3 million in damages however,
    the most fatal fire happened in 1912 with a documented five deaths. The 1969 fire, which did not incur maximum damages or fatally wound any citizen, was the most covered incident occuring on the river.
    This was in part because of the developing precedence that sanitation held over industrial actions; the United States was becoming more eco-aware.
    Also, due to the shift from industry to technology, waste dumping to recycling Time Magazine produced an article about the incident. This brought mass amount of attention to the Cleveland area
    and added pressure for hygienic regulation.

    Inspired by the 1969 river fire,
    Congress was determined to resolve the issue of land pollution, not just in Cleveland, but throughout the United States.
    The legislature passed the National Environment Protection Act (NEPA) which was signed into law on January 1, 1970. This act helped establish the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which would be given the duties to manage environmental risks and regulate various sanitary-specific policies.
    One of the first legislations that the EPA put-forth was the Clean Water Act (1972), which mandated that all rivers throughout the United States be hygienic enough to safely allow mass amounts of swimmers and fish within the water by 1983. Since the 1969 Cuyahoga River fire the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District has invested over $3.5 billion towards the purification of the river and the development of new sewer systems. There is a projection that over the next thirty years the city of Cleveland will further endow over $5 billion to the upkeep of the wastewater system.

    The river is now home to about sixty different species of fish, there has not been another river fire since 1969, and yearly new waste management programs develop to ensure the sanitation of Cleveland’s waterways….”

    The Struggle in the Mountains out west with a leaking Gold mine.
    State Agencies Suggested Action.
    Local Governments Suggested Action.
    BOTH REPUBLICAN CONTROLLED REFUSED TO ACT because of the COST, though they did admit the threat to Animals and Humans.
    THE EPA was called in!

    THEY TOOK BIDS TO PRIVATE ENTERPRISE (good Republican tradition).

    Local Republicans praised the Company they chose.
    When the tiny leak turned into a catastrophic spill into the river….
    and the EPA…claiming incompetence…though it was clearly the private company that was at fault.

    The EPA solved the problem.
    But to no praise from Professional Politicians in the Republican Party

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      Sorry, did you say something?

    • Avatar

      David Lewis


      The function of clean air, water, and similar function are legitimate. The trouble is Obama expanded it to include stopping and regulating fossil fuel production. The EPA power grab for control over water was extreme by any measure. Even the pond on our property, about twice the size of a private swimming pool, would have been subject to their rules. Their rules on ozone where so strict they would have been extremely costly with no benefits.

      When Scott Pruitt took over the EPA he said he was going to get the agency back to the job of a clean environment. He didn’t say this but others have claimed that when implementing Obama’s agenda the EPA didn’t do enough for a clean environment.

      It is true that states do not have duplicate functions with the EPA. But one change we really need is for each state to have the power to reject EPA mandates. This puts the power closer to the people, where it belongs.

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