On January 22, 23, and 24th (2015), Chief Fisher appeared at several musters in the Tucson Sector and informed agents of the imminent de-authorization of AUO. The timing of his announcement caught everyone off guard; however, the announcement about the de-authorization itself should not have caught anyone off guard. Due to the ongoing legal issues of AUO, the agency has been slowly decertifying Border Patrol Agents in phases. The first phase was management at HQ and all academy personnel; the second phase was upper managers at the sector level; the third phase was second line supervisors and above at both the station and sector levels as well as certain details at both the stations and sectors, and the last phase, which apparently will happen soon is the rest of the Border Patrol. The culmination of which, is the total de-authorization of OBP.
UPDATED (2-8-15) The 2015 National Convention for the National Border Patrol Council will be held in April 2015. Advance notice of the Convention was sent to Locals in September 2014, again at the beginning of January 2015, and even more recently. Information about the convention and the process for delegate voting, if necessary (depending on the local's by-laws, entitled number of delegates, and any delegates elected by virtue of office) is available to members in good standing from the member's respective Local.
What is the VRP? On August 26, 2010, the agency and the NBPC entered into the most recent VRP agreement that continued a test program that was approved by Congress and that was intended to provide Federal Agencies and Federal Employees more move opportunities by decreasing the amount of money an agency would have to pay for relocations. The test program expired on April 29, 2014, which also ended the negotiated VRP.
We are pleased to inform you that the Union and Management have agreed to open up two relocation programs. These two programs could start as early as next month. They are the Voluntary Relocation Program (which originally expired on April 29, 2014) and a new program that will be called the Relocation Opportunity Bulletin (ROB).
The main difference is that the VRP is a funded program that pays agents to move, whereas the ROB is non-funded and agents will be required to fund their own moves. The ROB will be in place for two years, after which, the NBPC will be able to evaluate and renegotiate if necessary. The ROB will expire on September 30, 2016. The VRP requires Congressional approval, which the Union and the Agency are currently seeking. We hope to have a quick resolution to the approval issue so that both programs will move forward expeditiously.