Wednesday, February 01, 2017

Seasonal firefighters exempt from federal civilian hiring freeze, says Trump administration statement

Missoulian photo by Perry Backus
Seasonal firefighters are among the exemptions to President Trump's 90-day hiring freeze of civilian federal workers, Zach Urness reports for the Statesman Journal in Salem, Ore. The Office of Management and Budget released a statement Tuesday that said exemptions include "seasonal employees and short-term temporary employees necessary to meet traditionally recurring seasonal workloads." A second exemption "said the head of any agency can exempt any position deemed necessary to 'meet public safety responsibilities, including essential activities to the extent that they protect life and property.'"

Melissa Baumann, council president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, said the Forest Service "hired 11,000 seasonal workers in 2015, many of them to fight the Western wildfires that break out between June and September," Rob Chaney reports for The Missoulian. "At least 6,200 of those were firefighters or had firefighting-related duties. But many were for positions such as logging sale analysts, trail maintenance workers and forest rangers."

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