VA to require workers to come into the office more this fall

The secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs unveiled a new plan to get workers based in D.C. back in person by this fall. 

In a new memo to staff in the D.C. region Wednesday, Veterans Affairs Secretary Denis McDonough ordered employees with telework agreements to show up in person at least five days a week every pay period.

It still isn't clear how many federal workers are teleworking. This spring, the Office of Personnel Management ordered agencies to start tracking the info. 

In a briefing, McDonough said having VA workers back in the office will mean better service. 

"I see the goodness of the why in this. As well as we’ve performed, we can perform at an even higher level when we’re in workspaces that are here, collaborating working together and with one another," said McDonough. 

D.C.'s Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton says the continued absence of federal workers is hurting D.C.’s economy. 

"If we don’t get them back soon, there will be long-term damage on the economy and people have gotten so used to working remotely I begin to wonder if we’ll ever get them all back," said Holmes.