Nov 25, 2012

USFWS Alaska Bracing for Large Amount of Retirements

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the Alaska office of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is preparing for the retirement of 40 to 50 senior Alaska employees at the end of the year, just less than 10 percent of its workforce.

That’s the number of workers who can take advantage of a one-time window to boost retirement pay. The window is tied to changes in the federal locality pay system, which provides a wage differential to employees who work in places with a high cost of living…

The Fish and Wildlife Service is part of a significant federal presence in Alaska. It manages 16 wildlife refuges in the state, totaling nearly 120,000 square miles — roughly the size of New Mexico…

The upside to a loss of senior positions is that the departing employees are at relatively high pay levels, Woods said. Their replacements will come in at lower levels and the agency will see cost savings.

But there will be no way to replace the collective wisdom of so many highly experienced and valuable employees.

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