Federal workers who now face a $10,000 fine for off-duty writing or speaking assignments could moonlight without fear under legislation that has
attracted strong bipartisan support.
Sens. John Glenn (D-Ohio) and William V. Roth Jr. (R-Del.) and Reps. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) and Constance A. Morella (R-Md.) are backing bills to exempt most U.S. employees from the anti- honoraria provisions of an ethics law that went into effect this month. The law, which was aimed at members of Congress, also bars rank-and-file workers who write, lecture, consult or teach unless they do it on a regular basis as part-time employees. Most federal workers who moonlight as writers or speakers
do not have regular employment agreements, so they fall under the anti-honoraria restrictions.
The Senate approved a Glenn-Roth honoraria exception for employees in the closing days of the last Congress. But the House failed to act, although many members agree the moonlighting ban was not intended to be applied to regular civil servants. Glenn is chairman of the Senate Governmental Affairs Committee and Roth is its ranking Republican. Their interest ensures that
the bill will move quickly through the committee, which handles most civil service matters.
Meanwhile, the Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments Tuesday on a request by the National Treasury Employees Union and the American Federation of Government Employees to allow employees to moonlight until Congress has a chance to overturn that portion of the law. Earlier this month the Supreme Court rejected an appeal by the treasury union to temporarily block the honoraria ban on federal employees.
Some employees say they have stopped all moonlighting pending resolution of the issue. Others say they are continuing outside writing and speaking because they anticipate the ban will be lifted and they don't sense any strong move to enforce the ban.
The Internal Revenue Service has an opening in Newark for a GS 9 through 11 public affairs specialist. Because Newark is covered by the special pay differential for the New York City area, the starting salary for GS 9 is $27,774 and GS 11 is $33,605. (In the Washington area, a GS 9 employee starts at $25,717 and GS 11 starts at $31,116.)
The Smithsonian Institution is looking for GS 9 through 12 personnel staffing specialists. Status not required, and retirees are welcome. Call 202-287-3100.
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission needs a GS 11/12 administrative officer. Call 202-254-3275.
The Transportation Department wants a GS 9/11 librarian. Call John Sutherland at 202-366-9386.
Military District of Washington is looking for clerks, secretaries and clerk-typists at special pay rates. Call 703-325-8840.