Published: Mon, September 03, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

President Trump Cancels Pay Raise Due Federal Workers in January

President Trump Cancels Pay Raise Due Federal Workers in January

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), who represents a fed-heavy district, called the decision an attempt "to balance the budget on the backs of federal workers" and "mismanagement".

In his letter, Trump said federal pay would have automatically risen by 2.1 percent next year.

30 that to save taxpayers money pay increases for federal employees will not go into effect as they were slated to in January 2019.

Trump also canceled "locality" pay increases - adjustments based on where an employee lives and separate from the across-the-board increase scheduled for 2019- that he said would average 25.7 percent and cost $25 billion. The Senate has already voted for a 1.9 percent pay raise for civilian federal employees in 2019, but the House version of the spending bill does not include that increase.

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Congress can override the president's pay freeze through legislation. That measure was part of a four-bill, $154 billion package that passed the Senate 92-6 earlier this month. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office predicts that the budget deficit will surpass $1 trillion for the 2019 fiscal year.

In ordering the raises canceled, Trump cited his statutory authority to adjust pay because of "national emergency or serious economic conditions affecting the general welfare". The 2.1 per cent across-the-board pay increase that was set to happen in January will no longer be happening as a way to maintain budget, CNBC reports.

In the letter, Trump said the pay freeze "will not materially affect our ability to attract and retain a well-qualified federal workforce".

Trump is not anxious about the effect of freezing federal pay on the government's ability to be successful in "recruiting, retaining and rewarding high-performing Federal employees and those with critical skill sets".

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Cox said federal worker pay and benefits have been cut by more than $200 billion since 2011. 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 past year, according to Washington's Top News.

The politics of the pay freeze could be dicey. It also issued a series of executive orders that would have made it all but impossible for federal employee unions to operate in federal buildings and to ease rules on firing employees. The administration appeared to be dragging its feet this week on complying with the judge's orders, with some agencies telling managers and union officials that the new policies remained in effect until further notice.

The Democratic National Committee described Trump's letter as "yet another slap in the face to American workers" by the president, while Sen. "I can think of nothing more hypocritical or disingenuous than to turn around and throw hardworking federal employees under the bus on the pretext of fiscal responsibility".

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