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Museum Plan in Event of Federal Government Closure

The following summarizes the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's lapse plan as required by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-11.

Major activities impacted during shutdown

  • The Museum will be closed to the public, including public programs.
  • All onsite and offsite public programs funded with appropriated funds will be cancelled.
  • The Museum will conform to normal shutdown procedures.

Shutdown Highlights

  • The Museum will be closed to the public.  Operations funded by federal appropriations will cease except for those deemed necessary to protect lives and the Museum's property (buildings and collections).
  • Non-appropriated fund staff will continue working.
  • The Museum’s website will continue operating. Non-appropriated funds will be used to pay for website operational costs during a shutdown.
  • The Museum will need one-half day to complete orderly shutdown operations.
  • Employees on board before implementation of this plan:
    • Non-appropriated = 256
    • Federal = 174
  • Employees retained under this plan:
    • All non-appropriated fund employees.
    • Federal employees who are deemed necessary because of responsibilities related to the safety of human life and the protection of property.
    • The following federal management personnel will be on-call during the furlough for the purpose of furlough related decisions affecting the safety of human life and the protection of property, for discussions and decisions related to the government’s management of the furlough process, the end of the furlough and orderly restart of agency operations, or emergencies, and for other lawful purposes:
      • Chief Museum Operations Officer
      • General Counsel
      • Director, Human Resources
      • Director, Operations
      • Director, Protection Services
  • The determination of using non-appropriated staff and designating necessary personnel may change depending on the duration of the shutdown.

Staff Status

Federal staff may not perform any services other than those involved in the orderly suspension of non-excepted activities; excepted activities that may be continued are generally those that are authorized by law, or those that protect life and property in accordance with OMB guidance.
In accordance with guidance provided by OPM, federal benefits will continue as usual. Federal employees who are furloughed will not be paid during shutdown and should not expect to be paid retroactively. Retained federal employees, who work during the shutdown, will receive pay for their services once the shutdown expires.

Non-Appropriated Funds
Non-appropriated fund staff will report for work as usual.
Non-appropriated fund pay and benefits will continue as usual.
The Museum Director (agency head) will remain on duty (Director’s contract 100% funded with non-appropriated funds).
There will be a non-appropriated fund staff person (and a back-up) designated as Senior Staff on Duty during the shutdown. This position will report to the Museum Director and will be responsible for all day-to-day operational decisions during the shutdown.

Buildings Status

Museum – Closed to the public. Open to all non-appropriated fund staff, retained federal staff, and designated contractors.

Ross Administrative Center – Open to non-appropriated fund staff, retained federal staff, and designated contractors.

Offsite Leased Space – Open to non-appropriated fund staff, retained federal staff, and designated contractors.

Regional Offices – Open. These are entirely non-appropriated fund operations.

Operational Status by Unit

Museum Services 
Non-appropriated positions will work.Retained federal staff and contractors:  None

Operations / Facilities Management
There will be minimum operational support for items/services such as supplies, mailroom, housekeeping, loading dock, phones, and copy/fax machines.

General Counsel
There will be one non-appropriated fund staff attorney working part-time during the furlough to address routine legal matters that arise through the ongoing work of non-appropriated fund staff.

Human Resources
There will only be emergency support.
Non-appropriated human resources specialists will work.
Retained federal staff and contractors:  None

Information Technology
There will be minimal staffing and contractor support paid with non-appropriated funds unless required by the excepted activities related to safety of human life or the protection of property including safeguarding systems.  
The Museum’s website will continue operations, as it includes capabilities related to Congressionally authorized non-appropriated fund activities, including fundraising.  
Non-appropriated funds will pay for operational costs. 
Retained federal staff:  None
Retained federal contractors:  The Museum’s Chief Information Security Officer function is fulfilled by a contractor paid with Federal Funds. This function is essential to protect the electronic property of the Museum and assure the ongoing integrity of the security protections for the Museum’s IT functions.

Security staff consisting of retained federal employees and contractors deemed necessary to ensure the safety of the non-appropriated fund staff and necessary to safeguard Museum property will remain on site. 

Non-appropriated fund staff will continue to work and are adequate to properly safeguard the collection.
Retained federal staff and contractors:  None.

Financial Management
Depending on the length of a shutdown, Museum management will revisit the issue of activating key federal staff in order to process non-appropriated fund payments. NOTE: Non-appropriated funded staff cannot perform all necessary functions due to required separation of duties and security authorizations in the financial systems.
Retained federal staff and contractors:  None

Additional Operational Items

Federal staff on travel will be recalled where reasonable and practicable. 

Non-appropriated staff travel is subject to recall but will be reviewed on a case by case basis. During a shutdown, donated staff can use the travel arranger contractor to make arrangements (charged to non-appropriated funds). Travel expenses are subject to normal government travel regulations.

Signs will be posted at the Museum building entrances. 
All inquiries and official media relations will be handled by non-appropriated staff in Communications.

Subject to the listed exceptions, contactors paid with federal funds will not be allowed to work, even if the work is funded by no-year funds. The only contractors that will be allowed to work are those whose responsibilities include the safety of human life and the protection of property. Those contractors have already been identified by the appropriate units (Operations, Protection Services, and Finance [Chief Information Security Officer contractor]). Contracts paid with non-appropriated funds can continue.

Volunteers (includes unpaid interns)
Museum volunteers (and non-paid interns) will not be utilized.  

Paid Interns (all paid with non-appropriated funds)
The status of paid interns will be determined by each Division or Office where they are assigned based on the unit’s needs.  

Fellows / Researchers / Visiting Scholars
These guests will be allowed to continue their work within the constraints of shutdown operations including limited access to Museum resources and understanding that Finance might not be able to issue stipends. Final working status/conditions will be determined by each Division or Office to whom they report.

All federal staff will be informed that they are prohibited by law from continuing work during the shutdown (no telework, work at home, or use of Museum resources or equipment). This does not apply to retained employees and on-call management officials.

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