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News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, February 01, 2006
Contact: Michael Orenstein
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM Director Supports Pension Forfeiture Legislation for Members of Congress, Their Staffs and Political Appointees

Washington, D.C. -- The Bush Administration today told Congress it supports a bill expanding the list of federal offenses that would bar Members of Congress and Executive Branch political appointees from receiving a civil service pension. Members also were assured that OPM is prepared to appropriately administer the changes.

OPM Director Linda M. Springer said the Federal Pension Forfeiture Act would apply to individuals whose crimes and offenses, such accepting bribes or willfully falsifying information, are committed while in office and for which convictions could lead to a minimum prison term in excess of one year.

The bill would apply to all levels of political appointees, in addition to Members of Congress, and congressional staff, and expands the types of violations that would result in forfeiture of annuity. "The Administration is supportive of the concepts outlined in the bill," Springer said. "We look forward to working with Congress on the details of the legislation."

Benefits to surviving spouses and children are barred in the bill, as they are in current law. The bill before Congress would permit payment of a spousal benefit if the Attorney General determines the spouse cooperated with federal authorities during the criminal investigation and subsequent prosecution of the individual.

Under the Federal Pension Forfeiture Act, OPM would be administratively responsible for applying the law in accordance with its provisions as the agency is doing under current statutory authority.

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Our mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People. OPM supports U.S. agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations and programs to improve work force performance.


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