The Wall Street Journal on October 1, 2013 released the following:
By JACOB GERSHMAN
“Let’s say you’re an administrative assistant at the Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships of the Department of Labor, and you really want to come into the office. What’s stopping you from working during the federal shutdown? The short answer is the law.
If you’re among the hundreds of thousands of non-essential furloughed federal workers, it’s against the law to ignore the shutdown and volunteer your time.
Under 31 U.S.C. § 1342:
An officer or employee of the United States Government or of the District of Columbia government may not accept voluntary services for either government or employ personal services exceeding that authorized by law except for emergencies involving the safety of human life or the protection of property.
An employee who knowingly and willfully violates the Anti-Deficiency Act faces up to $5,000 in fines or up to two years in prison. They could also lose their jobs. Legal experts said they couldn’t recall if anyone has ever been prosecuted for illegally volunteering during a federal shutdown.
The provision doesn’t apply to “essential” workers who are still coming to work. They may not get their paychecks on time, but the government has guaranteed them back pay, so they’re not considered to be volunteering their services.”
Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
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