Passport Services & NFFE Local 1998 Documents


Below are various documents (MOU's, settlement agreements, etc.) relevant to labor-management relations generated by NFFE Local 1998 and Passport Services.  Included in the documents below are the certifications of unit from the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) that officially designated NFFE Local 1998 as the exclusive representative of the bargaining unit employees of Passport Services.  Chief among the documents linked on this webpage is the collective bargaining agreement (aka "contract", or "CBA") between Passport Services and NFFE Local 1998. 

Collective Bargaining Agreements between NFFE Local 1998 and Passport Services


CBS 2019

The current collective bargaining agreement (CBA), called the "Master Agreement," went into effect on
January 18, 2019. 

An electronic version became available on the Passport Services Intranet in February, 2019

January 18, 2019 CBA


The prior CBA went into effect on July 20, 2009.  It was revised on August 25, 2009. 
The Union and Management signed a Memorandum of Agreement on June 11, 2009 regarding issues related to the Union's concerns about the integrity of the passport issuance process: MOA.
The Union and Management signed a Memorandum of Understanding on November 7, 2007 to permit all bargaining unit employees 4 hours of official time to review the CBA upon completion: MOU

In 2015, the Parties negotiated a grievance settlement that superseded some arbitration procedures in the Master Agreement: Settlement
July 20, 2009 CBA


Previous CBA's:





July 3, 2001 CBA September 23, 1991 June 4, 1986 March 11, 1985
Signature page
February 8, 2005 Amendment
February 10, 2005 Amendment
February 11, 2005 Amendment
May 22, 2008 Amendment
Signature page  Signature page  Signature page


The June 8, 1983 CBA (the original CBA) is not pictured. 



Locally Negotiated Agreements


While the Master Agreement covers a great many topics, there are still a number of issues and details that must be negotiated in each Passport Agency/Office/Center.  Many of these topics are listed in Article 12, Section 16 of the Master Agreement (including work schedules, dress code, desk assignments, etc.).  To view these agreements, click on this link: Locally Negotiated Agreements.



Memorandums of Understanding/Joint Memos


FURLOUGH AGREEEMENT:   Procedures used to determine which employees are allowed to work during furloughs periods : MOU 4-08-2011 

ERGONOMIC EQUIPMENT: MOA negotiated by Union and Management regarding ergonomic equipment: MOA 2-25-2010


PIERS SEARCH LOG: MOU negotiated by Union and Management regarding auditing of passport files (PIERS): MOU 8-14-2008 

ADJUDICATOR JOB ELEMENTS: New Passport Specialists performance elements: Joint Memo 5-23-2008 

PASSPORT ACCEPTANCE/CONTRACTORS: MOU signed by Union and Management to resolve Unfair Labor Practice charge regarding Management's decision to contract out the passport application execution/acceptance function: MOU 1-29-2008  

 7 FAM 1340 #1: An MOU prompted by revisions to the Foreign Affair Manual.  This MOU gets into allowable variations on notations.  A new agreeent was negotiated in 2018.

7 FAM 1340 #2MOU covering revisions to 7 FAM 1340 implemented in 2014 and 2015

7 FAM 1350 Agreement regarding details of adjudicating applications for children, as well as translations 6-11-15

Appendix C: Mid-2015 MOU regarding the name change section of the Foreign Affairs Manual

Appendix AAAgreement that attempts to protect employees from performance harm caused by computer system failures 5-27-16

Acquisition Review Panel: The parties negotiated an  Agreement pertaining to derivative citizenship cases 5-10-18.

Settlement Agreements


COMP TIME: Terms for earning comp time for overtime worked resolved a grievance Settlement Agreement 3-19-2018

OFFICE LAYOUT: Break room and Union office at new site of insufficient size: Settlement Agreement 7-24-2012

PIP MEETINGS: Denial of Union representation grievance settlement: Settlement Agreement 1-20-2012

OFFICIAL TIME: Denial of time for representational activities grievance settlement: Settlement Agreement 8-5-2011

PRODUCTION STANDARDS: The 16-per hour production standard used in 2010 and 2011: Settlement Agreement 6-10-2011

UNOFFICIAL PROD. STDS. GRIEVANCE: Locally-imposed standards grievance settlement: Settlement Agreement 11-12--2010

AWS GRIEVANCE: Termination of 4/10 CWS on night shift (Chicago) grievance settlement: Settlement Agreement 5-7-2010




OUTREACH PROGRAM: Outreach Program at CPC - settlement of ULP: Settlement Agreement 4-21-2010


OFFICIAL TIME (MSPB): Settlement of grievance filed by Union over official time for MSPB representation: Settlement Agreement 4-12-2010


OPERATIONS OFFICERS: Clarification of Unit (Operations Officers) settlement: Settlement Agreement 2-27-2009


NIGHT SHIFT GRIEVANCE: Second shift/night shift grievance settlement (Washington, DC and nationwide): Settlement Agreement 5-22-2008


FLSA OT GRIEVANCE: Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime pay grievance settlement: Settlement Agreement 2-11-2005 

AWS ARBITRATION: Work schedules arbitration settlement agreement (Seattle): Arbitration Settlement Agreement 11-29-2004


FLRA Documents relating to NFFE Local 1998 and/or Passport Services


Negotiability Appeal Decision:  Decision and Order on Negotiability Issues:  66 FLRA No. 26.  The FLRA ruled that the overwhelming majority of the Union's proposals regarding a move to new office space were negotiable.  (September 20, 2011)

Negotiability Appeal Decision:  Decision and Order on Negotiability Issues: 60 FLRA No. 34.  The FLRA issued a decision in this negotiability appeal, ruling that the Union's proposals - including the proposal to "maintain the status quo" - were negotiable, in response to Management's attempt to terminate three compressed work schedules.  Management was ordered to substantively bargain with the Union prior to terminating the compressed work schedules.  (August 17, 2004)
Order Dismissing Exceptions: This decision by the FLRA came in an "exception" (an appeal) of an arbitrator's decision.  The FLRA denied the exception on the basis that the Union had withdrawn the grievance: 48 FLRA No. 117. (December 8, 1993)
Unfair Labor Practice Charge: The FLRA upheld an Unfair Labor Practice Charge filed by NFFE Local 1998 regarding Passport Services' refusal to provide the addresses of bargaining unit employees: 43 FLRA No. 36. (November 27, 1991)  
Order Denying Application for Review: This decision by the FLRA ended Management's attempt to decertify NFFE Local 1998 as the exclusive representative of Passport Services bargaining unit employees: 35 FLRA No. 129. (May 30, 1990)
Certification of Consolidation of Units: Consolidation of Union: FLRA Case No. 3-UC-50003.  The FLRA certified NFFE Local 1998 as the exclusive representative of all Passport Services bargaining unit employees nationwide.  (September 10, 1985)
Certification of Representative: Following the original certification issued in 1981, NFFE Local 1998 is certified as the exclusive Union representative for all Passport Services employees at the Washington, DC Headquarters: FLRA Case No. 3-RO-20016. (April 22, 1983)
Revoked Certification: The FLRA revoked the Certification of Representation issued to AFGE Local 3671 for a bargaining unit composed only of the Chicago Passport Agency. The Department of State filed a Petition for Review of the prior decision by the Assistant Secretary of Labor for Labor-Management Relations that had granted AFGE Local 3671 the Certification of Representation, and the FLRA ruled for the Department of State. FLRA Case No. 50-13100(RO) (May 1, 1979) 


MSPB Documents relating to NFFE Local 1998 and/or Passport Services


MSPB Report: "The Department of State received a suggestion for formatting the agency's open announcements for job bids.  By using the suggested format, the agency was able to transmit the information in less time.  Another employee suggested a way to paste passport pictures.  The machine readable passport is also the result of an employee suggestion."  Appendix G: Examples of Suggestions Adopted by the Agencies Surveyed, from the MSPB publication, "GETTING INVOLVED: Improving Federal Management with Employee Participation" - page 101 (May 1986)


Whistleblower Reprisal: The MSPB ruled against the OSC regarding the charge that the Passport Office had retaliated against an employee of the New York Passport Office when it had reassigned him.  While the MSPB agreed that the "whistleblowing was a significant factor in the agency's action, the agency had shown that it would have taken the same action regardless....": Special Counsel v. Department of State (Rohrmann) - page 22 (1982 Calendar Year Report) 


Whistleblower Reprisal: The Office of Special Counsel (OSC) obtained a stay for a passport examiner who alleged mismanagement: U.S. Department of State [Rohrmann] - page 28 (1980 Calendar Year Report) 


OSC Documents relating to NFFE Local 1998 and/or Passport Services


Hatch Act Advisory Legal Opinion: The United States Office of Special Counsel (OSC) issued an advisory legal opinion regarding whether employees of Passport Services are allowed under the Hatch Act to write letters to Congress expressing concerns about the integrity of the passport issuance process.  The advisory opinion was requested by NFFE Local 1998.  The OSC summed up the request as follows: "Department of State employees would like to consider writing letters or personally visiting members of Congress to express your concerns about the passport issuance process".  In the opinion, the OSC stated that the "Hatch Act does not prohibit you or other Department of State employees from contacting members of Congress".   The OSC also noted that "the Hatch Act does not prohibit you from using official time to contact members of Congress about your concerns with the passport issuance process". Click here for the OSC's letter posted on the official OSC website (with the word "passport" and all names redacted): advisory legal opinion.  Click here for the OSC's letter posted on the NFFE Local 1998 website (this is the complete letter, nothing is redacted): complete advisory legal opinion.  (January 24, 2007)



Union/Management Council (Committee) Meeting Minutes


August 6, 2003 NUMC Official (Joint) Meeting Minutes


December 3-4, 2002 NUMC Official (Joint) Meeting Minutes


September 25, 2001 NUMC Official (Joint) Meeting Minutes



Congress/GAO Documents Relating to NFFE Local 1998 & Passport Services







May 5, 2009 June 29, 2005
U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Terrorism & Homeland Security hearing titled "The Passport Issuance Process: Closing the Door to Fraud" U.S. Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee hearing titled "Vulnerabilities in the U.S. Passport System Can Be Exploited by Criminals and Terrorists"
The statement submitted by NFFE Local 1998 starts on page 44 of the report (page 48 of the PDF).  The statement submitted by NFFE Local 1998 starts on page 75 of the report (page 79 of the PDF).   







March 16, 2009 June 29, 2005
GAO report (# 09-447), titled "Undercover Tests Reveal Significant Vulnerabilities in State's Passport Issuance Process" GAO report (# 05-477) titled "Improvements Needed to Strengthen U.S. Passport Fraud Detection Efforts"