U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has said that it will be able to temporarily delay widespread employee furloughs that had been set to start next Monday (August 3) although stressing that it still needs a budget supplement longer-run.
USCIS has already sent notices to about three-fourths of its 19,000 employees stating that they would be furloughed at least a month and possibly longer due to a decline in applications for citizenship and other related services—the agency is almost exclusively funded through those fees, which it said have dropped steeply in recent months.
Late last week, though, the agency said that the financial picture had improved somewhat in recent weeks and that it will be able to avoid furloughs for the short run, especially given that Congress continues to actively consider the request for the supplement.
That supplement most likely would be included in a further virus relief bill, which Congress continues to struggle to finalize. Other issues have become entangled with the funding supplement, as well, including the administration’s proposal to raise the fees to pay for it and proposals from Congress to make changes in immigration policy.