It’s snowing in DC … “non-essentials” need not report.

From the HomaFiles archives…

Imagine that it’s snowing in DC today … err, kinda.

Not much on the ground … temp is 34 degrees … roads are clear … but those AccuWeather folks are saying more snow is coming.

Good enough for the Feds … to shut the government down.

Archive photo … not from today!

* * * * *
Invariably, my absolute favorite public service message gets blasted on TV, radio and social media:

Due the inclement weather, non-essential Federal government workers do not have to report for work today.

The snow closure announcement always raises a fundamental question: Why do non-essential Federal government workers ever have to report for work?

My predictable advice: On the next snow day, why not change the locks and pass out new badges to people who self-selected as “essential” and trudged through the threatened-snow to come  to work.

Which raises another question: How many “non-essential” employees does the Federal government carry on its rolls?

How many non-essentials?

During the 2011 budget showdown, there were prospects of a government shut-down.

At the time, CNN-Money reported:

There are two kinds of federal workers right now: the essential and the non-essential.

Most don’t know which group they’re in.

The budget stalemate between Congress and President Obama has raised the specter of a shutdown.

If they don’t reach a deal, the government will shift to performing only “essential operations.”

It’s likely that more than 1 million essential employees will be asked to come to work.

But workers deemed non-essential won’t be allowed to come to work or work from home.

They won’t even be allowed to turn on their BlackBerries.

The official estimate from the White House is that 800,000 non-essential workers would be asked to stay home.

There you have it: 800,000 non-essentials.

Let’s price that out.

The Cato Institute estimates that an average Federal employee hauls in $126,141 in pay and benefits.


800,000 times $126,141 is more that $100 billion.


Just pray for snow … and then change the locks.

Problem fixed.



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