WASHINGTON – American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr. today applauded legislation introduced by Sens. Brian Schatz of Hawaii and Ben Cardin of Maryland to provide federal employees with a 3.3 percent pay raise in 2015.
“Federal employees have seen their standard of living deteriorate in recent years due to a three-year pay freeze, unpaid furloughs, and higher retirement contributions for newer workers,” Cox said. “This legislation by Sens. Schatz and Cardin would help federal employees recoup some of that lost income and ensure the government is able to recruit and retain the high caliber workers that taxpayers expect.”
The Senate legislation is a companion to a House bill introduced in March by Reps. Gerry Connolly and Jim Moran of Virginia.
The Obama administration has proposed a 1 percent pay raise for federal employees in 2015, a pitiful increase in light of how much federal employees have sacrificed these past few years. Federal employee wages were frozen for three straight years. New federal employees are paying between four and six times as much for their retirement without getting anything in return. Roughly 750,000 federal employees lost up to a week of pay last year due to sequestration-related furloughs, costing them $1 billion in lost salary.
“Federal employees are on the hook for $138 billion in lost earnings thanks to years of policies that put slashing the deficit ahead of creating new jobs,” Cox said. “A 3.3 percent increase would provide employees with a fair and meaningful raise for the first time this decade.”
The bill would apply the 3.3 percent raise both to General Schedule employees and hourly workers under the prevailing wage system.