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A deal is on the table; will it pass?

Govexec is reporting that the Senate deal includes back pay for furloughed federal workers, would fund the government through Jan. 15, and would extend the government's borrowing authority through Feb. 7.
Stay tuned to see whether both the House and Senate pass this bill today. If they do, the President is expected to sign it quickly.
Also a reminder: New Jersey is holding a special election today for Senator. NJ residents, remember to vote!

Update

There's a special Senate election in New Jersey today (Wed. 10/16); all NJ residents should be sure to vote. There's also a picket in Philadelphia today, on People's Plaza (southeast corner of 5th and Market) at noon. Meanwhile, all eyes are on Congress, where a deal is in the works to possibly end the shutdown and avert a government default. Stay tuned throughout the day; if the deal passes, EPA employees could be back to work as early as tomorrow.

AFGE's open letter on behalf of federal workers

AFGE President, J. David Cox, sent an open letter to President Obama on behalf of federal employees:
http://afge.org/?documentID=3741

Rally on Wednesday

A message from AFGE Local 2058:
We will be holding a picket on People's Plaza (southeast corner of 5th and Market) at noon on Wednesday if the government shutdown has not ended. We encourage all members and their families to join the picket. What better way to exercise your freedom of speech and to show your family the power of organized labor! Have no illusions, there are people out there who think this is a vacation for federal

What federal workers have already given

In the running of this government and in budget negotiations, there has been talk of "shared sacrifice" and "compromise." Here is what has already been taken from federal workers in recent years:
Three years, and counting, of pay freezes;
New employees required to contribute more toward their retirement;
Payment into federal retirement funds suspended as part of the "extraordinary measures" used by Treasury Secretary Lew to keep the government operating even after the debt ceiling was hit in May 2013;

Unemployment in Pennsylvania

Furloughed federal workers who apply for unemployment in Pennsylvania, take note:

Pennsylvania has a requirement that you must actively seek employment while collecting unemployment compensation. When I asked whether that applies to us--because we are technically still employed even though we do not have a definite recall date--I was told that yes, it does.

Shutdown Q&A

As the government lockout drags on, people will have more questions about how this affects, leave, retirement, insurance, etc. This is a reminder that many questions and answers appear on the following sites:

http://epa.gov/lapse/faqs/FAQs_9-30-13.pdf

http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/pay-leave/furlough-guidance/gui...

More: federal workers speak up

Locked-out federal workers protest the 2013 shutdown

Federal workers speaking up

Federal workers protest the 2013 government shutdown

Rallying

During this lockout, federal employees have been gathering daily to hold informational pickets and rallies. This YouTube video contains some footage of a local gathering:
http://youtu.be/dV9-yIIDKCw
On Thursday the 10th, buses are leaving at 7 AM from 3rd and Chestnut for Washington, DC; no advance reservations, just show up if interested.
Upcoming gatherings are listed here by state:
https://www.afge.org/Index.cfm?page=StopTheLockoutEvents

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