FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- About 300 Fort Jackson federal employees can exhale. Their jobs will stay in government hands for now, as a result of the Department of Defense's recent cancellation of various procurement studies.

The Office of the Undersecretary of Defense issued notification in late December of the cancellation of 11 outsourcing competitions throughout DoD.

Two of the competitions, referred to as A-76 studies because they are performed under the Office of Management and Budget Circular A-76, were being conducted at Fort Jackson to solicit bids among private contractors as well as government agencies, to get the best quality logistics and public works services for the best price.

What the cancellation means to civilian workers at Fort Jackson's Directorate of Logistics and the Directorate of Public Works, is that for the time being, they will remain Department of the Army employees, said Mike Munn, post supervisory logistics management specialist.

"It means the civilian employees have all the rights and privileges of a civilian work force," Munn said. "Because they are no longer under the study, their positions are not being scrutinized. The cloud that was over them, about potentially losing their jobs, is out the door."

Most of the positions affected by the study are currently filled by bargaining unit employees. Local union chapters of the National Federation of Federal Employees (General Schedule employees) and the American Federation of Government Employees (Wage Grade employees), were notified of the cancellation Jan 13.

Marie Brize, president of AFGE Local Union Chapter 1909, said the employees were very relieved, joyful, and some even cried when they found out that their jobs were secure.

Col. Lillian Dixon, garrison commander, said she is happy the employees no longer have to compete for their jobs, particularly when they are performing so well.

"It became increasingly difficult to look our great federal employees in the face and tell them to stay motivated and work hard while the A-76 process lingered on," Dixon said.

The government won its bid for the logistics and public work positions in September 2001. In September 2007, the positions were up once again for the A76 study process.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16