Fed Hiring Freeze Lifted, Agencies Directed to Make Deep Cuts
On April 12, the federal government lifted a hiring freeze that had been implemented through an executive order signed by President Donald Trump on January 23. The freeze impacted federal civilian employees, and directed that no vacant positions be filled and no new positions be created, with the exception of military personnel and certain other essential personnel. White House Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said that lifting the freeze “does not mean agencies will be free to hire willy-nilly” and that it is being replaced with a “smarter plan, a more strategic plan, a more surgical plan.”
Mulvaney said that agency heads would receive a 14-page memorandum outlining changes. The memo directs agencies to start taking actions to achieve near-term workforce reductions. It also instructs agencies to develop a plan to retain effective workers while dismissing weak performed by June 30. By September, agencies are required to submit a long term plan to shrink personnel in order to accommodate long term budget reductions called for by the President’s budget plan released earlier this year.