Congress Targets Your Wallet Once Again with New Bills Freezing Step Increases; Reducing Workforce

Monday, February 6, 2012

(National Federation of Federal Employees)

Two new bills targeting your pay and jobs were introduced last week, adding more measures to the litany of anti-federal worker bills already under consideration in this Congress. As you recall, lawmakers voted to extend the federal pay freeze through 2013 on Wednesday, February 1st, sending the bill over to the Senate for their approval. The new measures, however, take an even more draconian approach to slashing federal compensation.


On Tuesday, Rep. Martha Roby (R-AL) introduced a bill to freeze federal workers’ in-grade step increases through 2012. If passed into law, the measure would reduce eligible workers’ pay by hundreds or even thousands of dollars this year.


“Federal workers have already sacrificed enough,” said NFFE National President William R. Dougan. “The current two-year pay freeze will save $60 billion over the next decade, in addition to billions more in agency budget cuts. Federal workers are doing more with less in the workplace and at home. If we are serious about reducing the deficit we need a shared sacrifice, not another pot-shot at federal employees.” 


Just two days later, on Thursday February 2nd, a handful of senior Republican Senators led by Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) introduced a separate bill targeting federal jobs and pay. Co-sponsored by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), John Cornyn (R-TX), Jon Kyl (R-AZ), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), and Marco Rubio (R-FL), the measure seeks to extend the federal pay freeze through 2014 and slash 100,000 federal jobs over the next decade through attrition. At a press conference announcing the legislation, McCain argued it was necessary for federal workers to take an additional two years of frozen pay and job cuts in order to prevent sequestration cuts at the Department of Defense next year. The automatic cuts he references were the result of the Congressional Super Committee’s failure to reach a deficit reduction deal during the debt-ceiling negotiations late last year.


“This is just another example of Congress trying to paper over its own failures by reaching into the pocket of federal employees,” said Dougan. “Federal employees did not cause our deficit problem; they didn’t prevent Congress from reaching a deal to lower the deficit last year; yet federal workers are being put forward as a sacrificial lamb once again. This has to stop now.”


GSC   02/13/12 8:27 am
Vote them all out in Nov.
That's the answer the politicians caused this mess with their deregulating Banking and tax breaks and loop hole for the rich there trickle down economice plan has never matterialized over the lasrt 30 years. The rich get richer these rich politicans are owned and controled by the rich, serveants of the rich and powerful and now we the lowly working class must suffer and pay for there mistakes send these useless politicans home to unemployment. Time for us to fight this is class war faire being waged by the rich n the owrking class and we are being forced to pay for there mistakes with cuts and freezes they are the one who do not work and earn there pay everyday send thises useless politicans home for good and keep sending them home until we get some good ones in office to care about the people and the country. The rich benifit the most let them pay the most for it and not pass the cost of there good life on the working class. There are revolutions occuring all over the world wake up it could happen here we are tottlly feed up and full of this protect the rich at all cost to the poor and working class. I fought in battle the enemys of this country and I did not know them of have a personal problem with them I did what I was ordered to do, but now I know and dislike our own countrys polticans and rich who control and benfit from the tax loop hole and substies politcan give and protect for them. I see and know the real enemy of this country I love and it's the rich riding on the working classes back to get breaks and not pay ther fiar share they have more to loose so pay more a lot more till it hurts. They benifited from useless un called for wars with there stocks, while the working class and poor fought and died for there lies and spin. Get ride of these useless politicans all of the Republican and Democrate. Change them all this group is useless and must good for the good of the people and country. I say next and good ridence don't let the door hit you on your way out!

Michael J. Sheehan   02/09/12 7:48 pm
A very sad commentary on the Republican ultraconservatives.
When they needed us, we stepped forward. After risking life and sacrificing limb on the battlefield, we still stepped forward to accept a life of public service to our nation. When times were very good for most everyone else, federal employees suffered substandard pay and benefits. Now, when the economy is less than great, the federal employee is very often treated as a second class citizen, one who spent a life on the dole, taking handouts and providing nonessential services. Give some deep thought to who will benefit when the federal workforce is too thin to watch the front door -- I'll bet that it won't be the American Public!

T. Phil   02/07/12 11:25 am
If this GOP lead Congress was really interested in "cut, cap and balance", they would start by leading from the front and cut their own pay and benefits. Of course they won't do that, because it's all rhetoric, nothing but wasted words. Do they really think they can convince the American people that they can begin to reduce the deficit by freezing and reducing the federal workforce? Hardly!!! They need to cut and cap their own pay and benefits, increase taxes on the 1% first, which we all know is NOT going to happen.

craig   02/07/12 9:43 am
Are you kidding me?
And yet again, Congress goes after the federal employee, the majority being working class. Whoever thinks the FERS retirement system is wonderful is crazy. If I had it to do over, I would never be a federal employee. I have to postpone my retirment at least 4 years to try and recoup what the congress has done and I have something to live on. You congresspeople couldn't figure it out if your lives depended on it.

D. B.   02/07/12 6:26 am
Never again
As a lifetime Republican and a veteran/retiree of 22 years, I will never vote Republican again. Targeting a group (actually two groups-military and government workers) to take the blame for a Congress that can't do their job is ridiculous. I do my job Congress, why don't you do yours and stop harrassing those that have fought and served this country! How many of you served? How about you vote out your salaries and retirements FIRST. Lead by example instead of harrassment.

D Sims   02/06/12 3:16 pm
We have some really stupid comgressmen
I have no problem with a temporary payfreeze (a couple of years, but not 3-5 as proposed) nor do I have a problem with a cut in civilian employees (where I came from, we could have cut civilian employee positions by at least 20%).. I WAS a died-in-the wool Republican, but no longer. Addtionally, I WILL NOT vote for any incumbent since they obviously do not have the guts or the wherewithall to accomplish diddly squat.

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