Traffic limps forward on Interstate 395 in Washington, D.C. Plans to charge GSA employees for parking at offices in the Washington area have been delayed. (Mark Wilson / Getty Images)
The General Services Administration has delayed plans to charge employees at its Washington-area offices thousands of dollars a year for parking.
The charges — ranging from $1,800 to $6,240 a year, depending on the office locations — were set to kick in for all of GSA's offices in the Washington area Aug. 1.
But the new policy was put on hold, according to John Hanley, the president of the Council of GSA Locals, part of the National Federal of Federal Employees, which represents GSA employees.
He said the agency avoided talking to his union about the parking issue, and efforts to negotiate have failed.
He said paying for parking would hurt lower grade employees the most. It also would come at a time when employees are enduring a two-year pay freeze.
"Federal employees are taking a beating in this administration and this is just another example," Hanley said.
GSA declined to provide any details on the parking plan or its delay, saying it is still finalizing details of the plan and won't comment until new rules are final.
Cathleen Kronopolus, the regional commissioner for GSA's Public Buildings Service for the National Capital Region, said in an email that GSA had a responsibility to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions and make the government more sustainable.
"One way we can do that is by reducing incentives such as free parking," Kronopolus said in an email.