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REP. ELIJAH CUMMINGS: “WHITE HOUSE MUST RELEASE DETAILS OF PLAN TO SLASH SIZE OF FEDERAL WORKFORCE”

January 3rd 2018

The Trump administration should immediately release the specifics of its plan to make massive cuts in the size of the federal workforce, says Rep. Elijah Cummings (Md.), the lead Democrat on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

“The degradation of the federal workforce–particularly among those who dedicate their lives to protecting our national security, our environmental safety, and our health and wellness–should not occur in darkness,” Cummings said in a December letter to Mick Mulvaney, director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Under an executive order signed by President Trump last January, all federal agencies were required to submit to the White House far-reaching reorganization plans including both short- and long-term workforce cuts.

The White House says that details of the cuts will be made public only in its fiscal 2019 budget.

“The Trump administration is now in the midst of one of the largest reorganizations in decades with virtually no oversight by Congress,” Cummings said.

“As members of this committee, we believe it is our job to analyze the administration’s plans to determine if, and to what extent, these massive reductions in staffing will impact the services the American people rely on every single day.”

The cuts, Cummings said, should take place “in the open and with proper oversight.”

He asked that he be given the specifics of the plan by Jan. 3.

There has, however, been no response from OMB to a Freedom of Information Act request asking whether it plans to meet that deadline.

A panel of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee has held two hearings to examine the reorganization plans but OMB officials declined to testify at both.

Federal employee unions and their advocates in Congress have criticized the White House for developing the plans in secret and without any input from frontline personnel.