Trump Proposes Freezing Federal Worker Salaries

02 September, 2018, 09:44 | Author: Mary Valdez
  • President Donald Trump says federal employees shouldn’t get a raise in 2019

In doing away with the 2.1 percent across-the-board pay increase that was scheduled to take effect in January, Trump said he was working "put our Nation on a fiscally sustainable course".

"Under current law, locality pay increases averaging 25.70 percent, costing $25 billion, would go into effect in January 2019, in addition to a 2.1 percent across-the-board increase for the base General Schedule", Trump wrote in a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan and Vice President Mike Pence (the president of the Senate).

Trump's 2019 budget proposal, released earlier this year, included a pay freeze for civilian federal workers.

Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., said in a statement that Trump "ballooned the deficit by trillions of dollars with a tax giveaway primarily benefiting big business and the wealthiest Americans".

At the same time, Trump planned during a Friday appearance in Charlotte, North Carolina, to direct the Labor and Treasury departments to issue regulations created to make it easier for small businesses to pool resources so they can offer retirement savings plans to their workers, administration officials told reporters.

The Trump administration proposed $143.5 billion in cuts to federal employee compensation in May, including substantial decreases in retirement funding. The Senate already cleared a 1.9 percent pay raise for civilian employees for next year. It is worth noting that the Senate spending plan did receive some opposition from the White House, as Trump has recommended freezing federal salary despite increasing pay by 1.4 percent previous year, according to Washington's Top News.

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Just a few weeks ago, the Senate passed a bill that would increase civilian federal workers' pay by 1.9 percent next year.

Among the factors the president can consider: economic growth, unemployment, various measures of inflation and the budget deficit. Officials did not immediately say whether the pay freeze would also apply to White House staffers.

Federal workers rely on an old government formula to determine what their automatic pay raise will be each year.

The government "cannot balance the budget on the backs of our federal employees", she said. To help offset the pay freeze, the administration has pushed for a $1 billion workforce fund for incentive-based pay, recruiting and retaining employees. Trump also stated the pay increase would amount to over $25 billion, which he called "inappropriate".

"Accordingly, I have determined that it is appropriate to exercise my authority to set alternative across-the-board and locality pay adjustments for 2019".

The federal budget deficit has grown 16 percent this fiscal year, the result of a combination of Trump-supported tax cuts and military spending, as well as increases in mandatory spending programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

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