Ken Zawodny, associate director of retirement services (OPM)
The number of pension claims processed by the Office of Personnel Management plunged last month.
After processing about 11,000 pension cases in October, OPM handled just 5,714 last month, a drop of almost half, according to statistics released Thursday.
But because the approximately 5,700 new claims received last month were also well below projections, the backlog of pending cases remained roughly the same at just over 14,000 and is far below the threshold of a year ago. In a statement, Ken Zawodny, associate director of OPM’s retirement services branch, suggested that the agency is scaling back efforts to cut the backlog further.
Under the strategic plan launched in January 2012, OPM has reduced pending claims from a peak of 60,000 to the current 14,000 “steady state” level, Zawodny said. “Our goal is to process at least as many cases as we receive each month and to use the extra processing capacity for surges.”