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Committee Approves Paid Leave for Federal Employees

On May 6, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee passed, by voice vote, the Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act (H.R. 626). The House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on the Federal Workforce, Postal Service, and the District of Columbia approved the measure on March 25 (see The Source3/27/09). 

Sponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), H.R. 626 would allow federal employees to substitute up to four weeks of paid leave and any accumulated sick leave for unpaid leave in the event of the birth or adoption of a child, or placement with the employee of a child in foster care. 

The measure would authorize the director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) to issue rules that could increase from four weeks to eight weeks the amount of paid parental leave available to federal employees. In making such a change, the director would have to consider the benefits to the federal government (e.g., recruitment and retention of employees); the costs to the government; trends in the private sector and state and local governments; and the federal government’s role as a “model employer.” 

The legislation also would amend the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (P.L. 104-1) and the Family and Medical Leave Act (P.L. 103-3) to provide these benefits to employees of the Government Accountability Office (GAO) and the Library of Congress. 

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