Hiring Freezes??

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andythefir

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby andythefir » Tue Dec 13, 2016 12:19 pm

Am I right to say that a lot of the info on this thread is agency-specific? So maybe when we are asking for/getting info we should be specific to what agency. At least what kind of agency would be helpful in giving context, since trump will likely handle different agencies differently.

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nevdash

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby nevdash » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:14 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:I know this is going to sound super lawyer-y, but I feel like it depends on what the meaning of "hired" is. If it's "has started work," that's very different from "an offer has been extended and accepted and the various background stuff concluded and a start date designated." I honestly don't know what the legal meaning is in this context (or what Trump thinks it is).

At least for my agency, I don't know that it makes a difference. All new hires are "temporary" for the first two years, and they can be fired for the first two years without any reason and without any MSPB protection. I'm not actually involved with hiring, though, so I'm sure zot knows plenty that I don't know (e.g., internal procedures aside from MSPB protection that make it difficult to fire even temporary employees).

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A. Nony Mouse

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:22 pm

It might be easy to fire them, but on its face a freeze would be not hiring any more people, not firing ones who are actually hired. (I realize no one actually has any idea of what's going to happen, including me, but just addressing the language that's been used, at least to my knowledge).

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zot1

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby zot1 » Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:25 pm

nevdash wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:I know this is going to sound super lawyer-y, but I feel like it depends on what the meaning of "hired" is. If it's "has started work," that's very different from "an offer has been extended and accepted and the various background stuff concluded and a start date designated." I honestly don't know what the legal meaning is in this context (or what Trump thinks it is).

At least for my agency, I don't know that it makes a difference. All new hires are "temporary" for the first two years, and they can be fired for the first two years without any reason and without any MSPB protection. I'm not actually involved with hiring, though, so I'm sure zot knows plenty that I don't know (e.g., internal procedures aside from MSPB protection that make it difficult to fire even temporary employees).


You have the right idea though. Employees must serve a probationary period. If fired before that period is completed, the employee cannot appeal the action to MSPB. But they could file with other admin courts if there was something more (EEO, whistleblower, etc.).

But as Nony pointed out, the freezes would occur before you bring an employee on board.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 4:06 pm

Somewhat off-topic (at least as to the most recent flurry of activity), but with presumably 100+ new USAs coming in, does anyone know what that does to hiring, independent of any freeze Trump institutes? My understanding is that either interim or acting USAs will be heading each district for anywhere from 4-12 months while Trump's picks are confirmed. I would presume that no/little hiring occurs during this time?

For background, I'm in the first of two clerkships and hope to go straight to AUSA when I finish in september 2018. I would think that if there is a period of dormancy in hiring (say, january-august 2017) there may then be a surplus of positions becoming available around the time I would be applying. All speculative, but just wondering.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 4:56 pm

Anonymous User wrote:Somewhat off-topic (at least as to the most recent flurry of activity), but with presumably 100+ new USAs coming in, does anyone know what that does to hiring, independent of any freeze Trump institutes? My understanding is that either interim or acting USAs will be heading each district for anywhere from 4-12 months while Trump's picks are confirmed. I would presume that no/little hiring occurs during this time?

For background, I'm in the first of two clerkships and hope to go straight to AUSA when I finish in september 2018. I would think that if there is a period of dormancy in hiring (say, january-august 2017) there may then be a surplus of positions becoming available around the time I would be applying. All speculative, but just wondering.


From the folks I've talked to, it seems likely Trump will ask the USAs to step down, so the chiefs will assume their duties through September/October 2017. Unlike a state election, USAOs can't fire employees and then staff them with their own people because the employees have protections. Usually top AUSAs become management and management goes back to regular AUSA duties. So, unlike a state election, there won't be jobs backfilling heads rolling post regime change.

As far as the timing of the new jobs coming open, September 2018 start date means interviewing March-ish 2018, which means advertising/getting the go-ahead in January-ish 2018. The budget for January 2018 most likely gets appropriated in the next budget, which should get passed in April 2017. That, unfortunately, will be when congressional republicans are unlikely to be lavish in their spending.

I would also bet that both USAOs and DAs offices will need a massive amounts of new bodies if ALL crimes lead to deportation. In state prosecution, if a 1st DUI or battery on a household member meant deportation, offices would need waaay more line DAs. Problem for you is that that knowledge won't trickle down until after the funds you need have already been appropriated.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 5:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:Somewhat off-topic (at least as to the most recent flurry of activity), but with presumably 100+ new USAs coming in, does anyone know what that does to hiring, independent of any freeze Trump institutes? My understanding is that either interim or acting USAs will be heading each district for anywhere from 4-12 months while Trump's picks are confirmed. I would presume that no/little hiring occurs during this time?

For background, I'm in the first of two clerkships and hope to go straight to AUSA when I finish in september 2018. I would think that if there is a period of dormancy in hiring (say, january-august 2017) there may then be a surplus of positions becoming available around the time I would be applying. All speculative, but just wondering.


From the folks I've talked to, it seems likely Trump will ask the USAs to step down, so the chiefs will assume their duties through September/October 2017. Unlike a state election, USAOs can't fire employees and then staff them with their own people because the employees have protections. Usually top AUSAs become management and management goes back to regular AUSA duties. So, unlike a state election, there won't be jobs backfilling heads rolling post regime change.

As far as the timing of the new jobs coming open, September 2018 start date means interviewing March-ish 2018, which means advertising/getting the go-ahead in January-ish 2018. The budget for January 2018 most likely gets appropriated in the next budget, which should get passed in April 2017. That, unfortunately, will be when congressional republicans are unlikely to be lavish in their spending.

I would also bet that both USAOs and DAs offices will need a massive amounts of new bodies if ALL crimes lead to deportation. In state prosecution, if a 1st DUI or battery on a household member meant deportation, offices would need waaay more line DAs. Problem for you is that that knowledge won't trickle down until after the funds you need have already been appropriated.


Extremely informative, thanks. FWIW, I've been told that almost all USAs have already received the letter asking for resignation in january as you said. As far as AUSAs, I didn't mean to imply that the USAs would come in and clean house thereby creating an opportunity for those of us that want to get in (lack of such procedures are undoubtedly one factor of what makes the office so desirable). Instead (and obviously in addition to the border districts that will have to hire a ton more AUSAs if they are going to trial over everything), I figured there would be a complete hiring dormancy in districts other than SDNY and anywhere else where the USA remains and the attrition that occurs during those 9-10 months would inherently create a need for new AUSAs once confirmed. But I understand that funds may be very tight, particularly for a Sep 18 start time frame.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:04 pm

If we've interviewed for AUSA spots but haven't heard back, is it safe to assume that we're either rejected at this point or that the office is not going to move forward with applicants before the new administration takes over?

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:07 pm

How long ago did you interview? But I think it's going to depend and can't be clearly predicted.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 8:10 pm

Anonymous User wrote:How long ago did you interview? But I think it's going to depend and can't be clearly predicted.


One was about a month ago, another was a few weeks before that.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 9:33 pm

I got an offer from a fedgov honors program. They want me to start ASAP to avoid the position being eliminated due to being open for too long. They specified ideally next month, but preferably by April/May.

Unfortunately, I am currently clerking (not an elbow clerk). While my office is fairly lenient on departure dates (someone last year left in May when they were supposed to leave in August, and this year one of the new hires who started in Sept is leaving next month to take an elbow clerk position), it would be very difficult for me to leave early for the following reasons:

  • Lease ends in August/early September (miiight be possible to get out of this)
  • More importantly, my SO has a job here in this city. It is transferrable, but he just started in August/September and can't transfer until he's been working for a full year. He came to this city so that I could do my clerkship, so he doesn't have many people here as a support network. He's already not super excited but supportive/being a good sport about moving to where my new fedgov job is (it wasn't on either of our radars, and it's far away from both of our families and friends...just like this current job), so I feel a lot of guilt about making this transition any harder on him than it has to be.
  • Financially, it would not be feasible for us to pay for 2 apartments from May-September based on our incomes.

They're hiring 1 other person and I just found out he's starting 1/9/2017. Given the hiring freeze, would I be supremely stupid to not start early, especially since my job would probably allow me to leave by the Spring?

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:34 pm

Is your agency executive?

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 14, 2016 12:01 am

Anonymous User wrote:Is your agency executive?

Yes, it is a part of the Executive branch.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Wed Dec 14, 2016 8:59 am

The concern I've seen regarding the two year probationary period for honors programs is whether a hiring freeze would impact conversion after the two years. That being said, no one in my agency is particularly worried. Our concerns focus on new policy directions and changes in leadership affecting our work and office dynamics.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:16 pm

Anonymous User wrote:I got an offer from a fedgov honors program. They want me to start ASAP to avoid the position being eliminated due to being open for too long. They specified ideally next month, but preferably by April/May.

Unfortunately, I am currently clerking (not an elbow clerk). While my office is fairly lenient on departure dates (someone last year left in May when they were supposed to leave in August, and this year one of the new hires who started in Sept is leaving next month to take an elbow clerk position), it would be very difficult for me to leave early for the following reasons:

  • Lease ends in August/early September (miiight be possible to get out of this)
  • More importantly, my SO has a job here in this city. It is transferrable, but he just started in August/September and can't transfer until he's been working for a full year. He came to this city so that I could do my clerkship, so he doesn't have many people here as a support network. He's already not super excited but supportive/being a good sport about moving to where my new fedgov job is (it wasn't on either of our radars, and it's far away from both of our families and friends...just like this current job), so I feel a lot of guilt about making this transition any harder on him than it has to be.
  • Financially, it would not be feasible for us to pay for 2 apartments from May-September based on our incomes.

They're hiring 1 other person and I just found out he's starting 1/9/2017. Given the hiring freeze, would I be supremely stupid to not start early, especially since my job would probably allow me to leave by the Spring?


I was in a very similar situation (I rather not specify which agency). I decided to start prior to inauguration given the uncertainty. In trying to find an answer to this question, I realized there are no good answers. The only answer is that no one really knows. It is totally possible that you'll be fine and that nothing will change. However, it is possible that your offer will be rescinded. At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself if that is something you are willing to live with. If you are willing to live with that and willing to go back and search for a job, then that may help make your decision easier. I will note that I did not have the same difficulties you have with your SO, but I did have to quit my clerkship several months early, which was certainly not an easy decision and put my judge in a tough position. I wish you the best of luck in making this decision; it is not an easy one. If it provides any insight, I have absolutely zero regrets about starting early. Good luck!

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zot1

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby zot1 » Thu Dec 15, 2016 9:18 pm

Anonymous User wrote:The concern I've seen regarding the two year probationary period for honors programs is whether a hiring freeze would impact conversion after the two years. That being said, no one in my agency is particularly worried. Our concerns focus on new policy directions and changes in leadership affecting our work and office dynamics.


FWIW in some agencies, HPs don't have to compete for a regular staff attorney position.


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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby andythefir » Tue Jan 03, 2017 12:39 pm

Anonymous User wrote:https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/federal-agencies-rush-to-fill-job-openings-before-trump-takes-office-jan-20/2016/12/30/de0c1030-cdd8-11e6-a747-d03044780a02_story.html?utm_term=.dd54486652c2


This is going to get politically ugly for trump. Some agency somewhere won't be able to keep the lights on because it's desperately under-staffed, and it's going to be obvious where to put the blame.

It seems to me, especially in the DOJ, there's going to have to be an epic spin up in personnel. This article mentions how the NM USA has capped the number of re-entry prosecutions. https://www.abqjournal.com/916079/immig ... ystem.html. That's one of the few kinds of cases trump can prosecute to look like he's deporting more people. I very much doubt those folks will plea, and it's virtually certain that the Holder Memo will go away, which means there will be at least some more trials.

If I'm right about the two paragraphs above, then there will be a huge uptick in DOJ hiring roughly a year from now, to start 18-24 months from now.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby forumsleuth » Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:50 pm

Pretty sure the article is talking about senior executive service ("ses") hiring. It seems unlikely Obama would have agreed to freeze all federal hiring. Trump wants to stop ses hiring so obama's political appointees don't get appointed civil service jobs--or "burrow" in. Same thing happened in the bush to obama transition.

Plus, what's the point of doing a hiring freeze by executive order when you have starry eyed Paul Ryan in the house who can simply cut appropriations and force attrition that way? Bear in mind, Reagan (in 1981) was dealing with a Democrat house.

It would be a lot cleaner to reduce (punish) the government through legislation, rather than through executive fiat. But it can certainly be both. In the end, who knows?

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Mon Jan 09, 2017 9:29 am

http://www.fredericknewspost.com/public ... 3fb3e.html

New article. So, our list is:

1. Trump hiring freeze
2. Congress trying to cut staff (Holman Rule + good luck in appropriations), salaries, and civil service protections
3. Potential targeting of specific employees (climate change, etc.)

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby FSK » Mon Jan 09, 2017 10:20 am

A general freeze by executive order for more than few months isn't realistic. I can entry duty as late as 12/1/17 for my honors program. I'm not worried
Last edited by FSK on Sat Jan 27, 2018 1:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby ConfusedL1 » Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:43 pm

FSK wrote:A general freeze by executive order for more than few months isn't realistic. I can entry duty as late as 12/1/17 for my honors program. I'm not worried


Are you under appropriations?

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zot1

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby zot1 » Mon Jan 09, 2017 12:55 pm

Can confirm at least my agency sped up hiring not just for SES but anyone (yep, including GS5s and below, and attorneys). There was a direction to confirm all offers even if employee was to start after Jan 2017.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:20 am

It sounds like most USAs have received a letter informing them that their resignation is expected next week. Looking at the past transfers of power it looks like most or all replacements have been nominated in the following fall (i.e. Sept - dec 2017, here). Total speculation but if this timeline holds, can we expect a total or moderate freeze through most of 2017 and then a large amount of openings (either only to fill attrition or possibly to facilitate the prosecutions trumps rhetoric suggests, if funding is appropriated) in late 2017/early2018?

As with other posters, coming off clerkship in 8/18 or so and am hoping to slide straight to AUSA but want to do ample planning if possible.

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Re: Hiring Freezes??

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:43 am

Apologies for rambling, but: I'm not sure hiring is so directly connected to getting a new USA on board; I think the transfer to new USAs and the potential hiring freezes are kind of two separate prongs of the new administration, so I don't see the end of a hiring freeze being predicated on getting a new USA on board. That is, if you get an USA on board that doesn't mean they're going to have authorization to hire any sooner than in the rest of the government. Or you might have the hiring freeze end quickly and USAs will still be coming on board, and an office might start filling positions so as not to lose them.

Also from my experience, if a USAO gets funding to hire at the end of 2017/early 2018, I don't know if they're going hire that far out (to the end of your clerkship) rather than hire someone who can start sooner, to be honest. Most of that experience is pretty recent so shadowed by the pending administration change, but my sense is that if an office is hiring it's because they have an opening they want to fill quickly. (The last 2 USAO hirings I know of were complete in under 2 months, and both were looking for people to start as soon as possible.)

You may be completely right, though, that may be what happens, so I don't mean to be a downer. I just think there are way too many variables to predict at this point. (Also, did you practice before your clerkship?)



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