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Federal employees earn 2% pay raise

By Ed O'Keefe

Congressional appropriators agreed Tuesday night to give civilian federal employees a 2 percent pay increase -- which includes a locality pay increase President Obama didn't want.

Government workers will get a 1.5 percent nationwide increase in base pay and a 0.5 percent average increase in locality pay. The final agreement goes against the wishes of Obama, who called for a flat 2 percent jump and no locality increase.

Locality pay helps address the gaps between federal pay and private sector wages in high-cost areas of the country. The Federal Salary Council estimates the current private-public gap is about 26 percent, on average. Locality increases mean a federal worker in Cincinnati might get a smaller increase than a worker in Washington, D.C., because of local costs of living.

“I am pleased the final bill will provide for locality pay to reflect variable costs for federal employees working in various job markets,” Rep. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said in a statement Tuesday night. “This provision is critical to bringing federal pay in line with the private sector and enabling the federal government to compete for high quality talent.” Hoyer's Congressional district is home to thousands of federal employees.

The pay increase will take effect once the House and Senate pass the FY'10 omnibus appropriations bill. Lawmakers hope to pass a host of key bills before year's end.

Though supporters won a locality increase, civilian federal workers will still earn a smaller pay increase than military service members. Hoyer assured federal workers, their unions and supportive lawmakers that the Obama administration will include pay parity in its FY '11 budget requests.

“Like their military counterparts, civilian federal employees have made significant contributions to help our country respond to the challenges we face both domestically and abroad, and I believe their pay adjustments should reflect that," Hoyer said.

“Military-civilian parity in pay raises has been a tenet of federal pay policy for most of the past 20 years, and reflects the continuing contributions of both groups of federal employees to the well-being and security of our nation” said Colleen M. Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union. NTEU will fight for pay parity in next year's budget, she said.

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By Ed O'Keefe  | December 8, 2009; 8:19 PM ET
Categories:  Congress, Workplace Issues  
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even for those weary of obamanations, this is outrageous

social security recipients got no raise

10% mass unemployment

this is going to bite the dems in 2010

and fed employees need to realize they can be fired too

this raise says to americas unemployed let them eat cake"

fed employees can lose their job too, not just dems in 2010

Posted by: ProCounsel | December 8, 2009 9:23 PM | Report abuse

nothing would make a politician more popular now than to fire fed employees..........

lots of them

Posted by: ProCounsel | December 8, 2009 9:24 PM | Report abuse

Why do federal employees, mostly highly paid, get a 2% pay increase and persons receiving Social Security, most of whom receive less than $20,000 annually from all sources, get zero cents? This inequity, the lower tax reduction in the "stimulus" bill for non-workers, and the Obama/Democratic plan to largely finance their limited health care bill on the backs of seniors, shows what little regard they have for older people in this country. They seem to forfeiting most of the sixty and older vote in the next few elections.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | December 8, 2009 9:56 PM | Report abuse

federal employees would have gotten a much larger raise if there were less of those overpaid contractors working with them.

if the federal government would clean house of all the useless overpaid contractors.. get rid of most of them.. and scale down the size of the federal government to a reasonable level... the federal employees would get more.

hopefully the federal agencies will dump the useless service contracts.

Posted by: FranknErnest | December 8, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

The article says "Though supporters won a locality increase, civilian federal workers will still earn a smaller pay increase than military service members. Hoyer assured federal workers, their unions and supportive lawmakers that the Obama administration will include pay parity in its FY '11 budget requests."

“Like their military counterparts, civilian federal employees have made significant contributions to help our country respond to the challenges we face both domestically and abroad, and I believe their pay adjustments should reflect that," Hoyer said. "


I guess you don't believe it is the case for FY 2010 though right? You sold Feds out Hoyer! To your buddy Obama. You would never have allowed George W. Bush to get away with this.

Feds wake up. Smell the coffee. Change is what you get now with Nobama

Posted by: WmJLePetomane | December 8, 2009 10:49 PM | Report abuse

It looks like some of the posters are under the illusion that the GOP didn't cooperate in this. Silly.

So you want to get rid of gummit employees? How much higher would you like unemployment to go? How many more foreclosures would you like to see? Of course these people would be on unemployment benefits. Then they won't be shopping as much. How much lower do you want retail sales to go down?

Remember what happened when Newt shut down government figuring the public wouldn't care?

Posted by: James10 | December 8, 2009 11:32 PM | Report abuse

I have been a federal employee for almost 30 years, and I too am unhappy about pay raises for feds. I have written the president and requested that we receive no pay raise this year.

I am grateful everyday for the opportunity to serve the American people, and that's how I view my position, serving the people of the greatest nation on earth. I feel fortunate to have the income that I do, and I don't want Americans to confuse what we, federal workers, think should happen, and what congress does.

To the American people, I'm sorry if you think this is wrong. Thank you for the posiion and the opportunity I have been given to be a federal worker. I work my give a good days work for a good days pay. I enjoy serving and I believe that most of us are trying our best to give all we have to give.

Posted by: JSteven57 | December 9, 2009 2:10 AM | Report abuse

I think its disgraceful that Federal employees are getting a cost of living increase while at the same time Social Security recipients are not. As a Federal retiree, I don't know if we also are getting the same raise, but I would forgo the cost of living increase if the active workforce also had their pay frozen.

Posted by: ripvanwinkleincollege | December 9, 2009 3:18 AM | Report abuse

It's easy to give out raises with other peoples money.

Posted by: cautious | December 9, 2009 4:10 AM | Report abuse

I am a federal worker. Perhaps people might want a little realitiy check. This happens EVERY year. It is a basic part of the federal budget. Is it truly that outrageous that workers would get a typical raise of a measly 2%? Why all the hate for federal workers? I truly don't care if anyone gets a small raise for doing their job. 2% will probably mean an extra 100 dollars a paycheck for me. Wow, I am really screwing the public.

This seems like a wicked case of schadenfreude. If I don't get something, then nobody else should. Well, life is not always fair. I wish all of you the best too. I will spend my one hundred dollars wisely on beer and lottery tickets.

Posted by: russellcrowe | December 9, 2009 4:32 AM | Report abuse

FranknErnest - The government uses contractors because most government workers are not competent enough to perform the work themselves.

Posted by: ahashburn | December 9, 2009 5:39 AM | Report abuse

God I'm mad, mad mad mad mad mad. I'm 72 on fixed income, prices of everything up up up and no increase in cost of living Social Sec. this year and yet Gov workers, congress and sen get big increases. Dam, dam dam dam dam. Anyone want to take to the streets and march? ARE WE SHEEP OR WHAT? Oh don't bodder me wit dat stuff, da pakers are winnin and dats all dats important. Dah, oh SCHIET.

Posted by: eaglehawkaroundsince1937 | December 9, 2009 6:26 AM | Report abuse

There is no need to trash anybody about a raise they received. My opinion regarding federal, state, or local government employee compensation is that they receive fair or better salaries for less work than other non government employees, have better benefits and earlier retirement options, and better job security,i.e. it's difficult to be fired or laid off. Public service employees formerly earned less than the normal worker and were offered better retirements at younger ages. This is no longer true because their salaries are much higher now. It's time to revamp the system. Locality differentials are justified and used by many corporations..I have no problem in that regard

Posted by: johna4 | December 9, 2009 6:31 AM | Report abuse

Hey RussellCrow, how about you give that $100.00 to some poor soul who had a job but lost it instead of spending it on beer and lottery tickets, you poor excuse of a worker. Why not try to get a better job out there now Fo-l.

Posted by: eaglehawkaroundsince1937 | December 9, 2009 6:32 AM | Report abuse

Isn't that sweet? This is the most out of touch bunch of fools ever to foul the landscape. No wonder the country is going to hell in a handbasket.

Posted by: Lilycat11 | December 9, 2009 6:55 AM | Report abuse

Unbelievable! Most of us are happy to have jobs. We haven't gotten pay raises in 2 years. How nice it is to work for the Fed. Government - your raise comes out of the pockets of the already hurting American people.

Posted by: mdflorals | December 9, 2009 6:59 AM | Report abuse

Let me repeat RussellCrowe.
Most of us aren't getting a thing!
Certainly you shouldn't either since it is coming out of OUR pockets.

Posted by: mdflorals | December 9, 2009 7:01 AM | Report abuse

If the FED goof-offs get 2% raise in 2010,- then Social Security should get at minimum a 40% COLA, just to get caught up from the BUSH/CHENEY Economic Terrorist years! - Why would Fed-employees deserve more than the Most Suffering of U.S. Citizens? - The Citizens, like the DISABLED & ELDERLY Living in "POVERTY"!!?? - Especially these Hurting Citizens need a STIMULUS! - But actually,- they need just what should be coming to them,- a decent Real "COLA", that they $Paid For for so many years of WORK! - WORKERS $Paid into SS without any Choice! - Then when the SSDI - Social Security Disability Insurance is needed,- they expect an Honest Just return!! - But, CONGRESS has stolen the so-called Trust Fund (criminal)! - That $Money invested SINCE JSUT 1970 at a lousy 6-7% would mean $4-5-TRILLION Extra today!! WOW! - SSDI could get a Real "COLA" OF AT LEAST DOUBLE, or 100%!!

Posted by: jward52 | December 9, 2009 7:13 AM | Report abuse

How the "pay gap" was arrived at is questionable. How come this magic 26% pay gap number is used to justify a pay increase for federal employees instead of the cost of living index (CLI)? A corollary question is why aren't social security cost of living increases based on the Federal Salary Council recommendations?

Let me tell you about a pay gap in my neighborhood.

The last time I was paid for work, which I am seeking, was in April 2008. Since then, the hourly rate offered for the kind of work I do has dropped by 30%.

Does that mean Federal Employees should be subjected to a 4% pay cut? Probably not, but it is a good indication of how out of tune those inside the beltway are with the real world out here Outside-The-Beltway.

The current debate on health insurance reform has a similar issue: Why not put the Congress and Federal Employees on the Medicare scheme? Guarantee Medicare would get "fixed" in short order.

Posted by: Huffman214 | December 9, 2009 7:28 AM | Report abuse

What formula was used to give this pay raise; and why wasn't it used for Social Security also? And, to give the military more, Is totally unacceptable. Gives me another reason to NOT support any united states military members, no matter what they are doing.

Posted by: linda_521 | December 9, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Dear God, How much more do they need from us? They've already taxed us into oblivion. This just shows the caliber of yahoos we have working in the Government. When will this ever stop? I'm so dam mad right now I could spit!

Posted by: sheilahowison | December 9, 2009 7:50 AM | Report abuse

russellcrowe's remark was pathetic, and ugly. Yes, I do resent the heck out of your extra $100.00 a month when plenty of hard working Americans have not received even a cost of living increase. How selfish can one imposter be?

Posted by: sheilahowison | December 9, 2009 7:54 AM | Report abuse

A pay increase when Social Security recepients got nothing? They do get paid less, but have incredible work, security and retirement benefits. I suppose no government employees have heard that we are in the middle of a recession.

Posted by: DGSPAMMAIL | December 9, 2009 7:55 AM | Report abuse

President Obama's job approval rating has fallen to 47 percent in the latest Gallup poll, the lowest ever recorded for any president at this point in his term.

Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford and even Richard Nixon all had higher approval ratings 10-and-a-half months into their presidencies. Obama's immediate predecessor, President George W. Bush, had an approval rating of 86 percent, or 39 points higher than Obama at this stage. Bush's support came shortly after he launched the war in Afghanistan in response to the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Posted by: lucygirl1 | December 9, 2009 7:59 AM | Report abuse

Hey, I think Federal employees do an incredible job, but russellcrowes need to go. He shows absolutely no empathy for those who are struggling. We do need to stand up and fight to get people like him off our taxpayer payrolls. We are their customers!!!

Posted by: DGSPAMMAIL | December 9, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

I always said..give a fool enough rope and they eventually hang theirself.....seems thats what has happened to politicians of both parties

Posted by: lucygirl1 | December 9, 2009 8:05 AM | Report abuse

Isn't it wonderful that we take such good care of Federal employees and our Congressmen while they stick it to the rest of us.

Our Congressmen do not need automatic raises. They are all taken care of by the Lobbyists in Washington. I just don't understand why they keep referring to Federal Employees as "talent". Most of them are political appointees given patronage jobs! In government, one hand feeds the other.

It gets so disgusting. The only way to show our disgust is at the polls. Do it, do it at local, state and Federal levels!

Posted by: cashmere1 | December 9, 2009 8:11 AM | Report abuse

And Hoyer is representing my State !!!! Shame on you As we seniors who have worked our selves to death continue to have cost of drugs and lose out on the Medicare we paid for all our working lives-------WELL STENY DON'T LOOK FOR MY VOTE IN THE FUTURE

Posted by: peep1935 | December 9, 2009 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Come on, very few of these federal employees "EARNED" the salary increase. This is just another attempt for the imperial federal government to buy the favor of its union employees to keep the elected class in power.

Posted by: RogerDodger1 | December 9, 2009 9:04 AM | Report abuse


Spoken like a true Kool Aid drinker. I think that it might be accurate to say in most instances that contractors in the private sector get the job done for a more competitive price than would unionized federal employees.

Posted by: sombreropoint38 | December 9, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

It's OK folks. As long as we are out hear to raises taxes on, they can continue to get pay increases.

Posted by: sombreropoint38 | December 9, 2009 9:08 AM | Report abuse

I read these comments bashing federal workers and just shake my head. I am a federal worker for the Department of Defense and have stood side by side with members of our military in areas of danger. Everyone loves the military and supports their raises but let us be given a 2% increase and the budget deficit rests on our shoulders. To readers who state that this money is coming out of "their" pockets, here's a news flash for you...we are all taxpayers too with the same concerns as you.

Posted by: still_serving | December 9, 2009 9:11 AM | Report abuse

My husband's company has had rolling lay-offs for salary employees in 2009 and this is expected into 2010. This is a 18% REDUCTION in his salary this year. On top of that, I lost my salary engineering job.

Many of our friends have also taken pay cuts of around 20% to keep their salary positions. These are people with college degrees, some with master degrees.

The Federal Gov't need a reality check. 10% unemployment and the rest of us taking cuts to pay and benefits and they get an increase!

Posted by: FormerAuto | December 9, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

What did anyone really expect from a government that is no longer representatives of the people?

I am a disabled veteran and on social security, no increase in either area. Oh, wait... I think I heard something about getting $250 as a one time payment... Gee, think about it, $4.81 a week. My electric company just raised its rates 30%. Now they are also going to cut medicare? I seriously have to think if I can afford to take care of my dog.. all the while millions are being spent by this moron-in-chief on State dinners and congressman funding puppet shows in Minnesota.

As to that idiot Linda, that says she doesn't want to support Military members because they got a raise all I have to say to her is; "When was the last time you wrote a blank check payable to the American people for an amount up to and including your life?" The reason you could write that crap is that there are people that fought and died to give you that right. Freedom is not free. The military has historically been paid very little for literally being on the job 24/7

I am madder than hell. I already wrote the 3 idiots that represent me in Washington that I will do everything I can to see that they are fired. I hate it when someone takes me for being stupid.

Posted by: justavet | December 9, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

Medicare recipients will have to unionize if they want to gain the attention of Mr. Obama, Ms. Pelosi and Mr. Reid.

If you are not registered to vote, do so now. AND REMEMBER TO VOTE NEXT NOVEMBER. VOTE THEM ALL OUT.

Posted by: hansen2 | December 9, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Another slap in the face to the American people by Obama and the socialist Democrats. With Millions of Americans unemployed and untold numbers of small businesses destroyed by this Congress and this administration, the last thing we need is to raise the pay of the ever increasing contingent of govt workers.

Posted by: ricardo4max | December 9, 2009 9:30 AM | Report abuse

I don't understand why people keep comparing govt workers and people receiving social security. The govt doesn't need to have competitive social security rates to stop people from moving to canada or mexico... but it does need competitive salary to attract people that are smart enough to fix these messes. And thanks Hoyer, I'm sure that 0.5% will go a long way in closing that 26% gap with the private sector...

Posted by: TrustMe2 | December 9, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

To all the federal employees trying to defend their 2% increase: the fact that you cannot understand why the private sector employees are outraged shows how out of touch and ignorant your can be. You people are a COST center, you produce NO PROFITS. When things go bad in business you cut costs, not increase them as government seems to do. Yes, you do pay taxes, but your salary comes from taxes! Our taxes!!!! The fact that politicians want to keep feeding the unproductive government sector is that they can count on votes the same way other social programs get bought: free or easy money. I don't expect you to understand this because after all, you are government employees. The reason you can get a raise is that the government takes taxes by force and under penalty of prosecution or jail, but private business cannot coerce the marketplace to buy their products or services. So, surprise! will always have a budget, specially with the friendly democrats that never saw a tax they didn't like. So please...go back to shuffling some paper...and take your time, as usual.

Posted by: vraban | December 9, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

the appropriate raise is 0%. this year and next year.

For those who are partisans and of limited intelligence, do remember that george bush gave the fed employees a 4.9% pay hike.

Posted by: tru-indy | December 9, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

to all you angry posters out there: Do you really think that we can wait until 2010 to fix this socialist / Democrat problem we have?
Will ACORN SEIU and the New Black Panthers allow a fair and honest vote to take place?
Impeachment and recall start now.

Posted by: ricardo4max | December 9, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Does Steny Hoyer have a clue about the state of the economy? This is so friggin typical of how our government works.Pay themselves a raise while the rest of the country goes looking for a job. Rich

Posted by: flobelly | December 9, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

"Hoyer assured federal workers, their unions and supportive lawmakers that the Obama administration will include pay parity in its FY '11 budget requests." This is just a card trick to vote congress another pay raise.

Those complaining about social security, what did you do that is so great for the nation that the federal government needs to take care of you? Quit whining and suck it up.

As for the federal employees, fire the lot of them. It is nothing more than a work plan for losers.

People, take care of yourselves first. The tax and spend congress nor the president cares anything about you other than your vote.

Posted by: buzn | December 9, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

tru indy: I'm not a huge GWB fan BUT what year was it that the federal employees received this 4.9% pay raise? What was the economy like then? And btw, you are not a true independent but just another bush bashing liberal (or Ron Paul wacko).

Posted by: ricardo4max | December 9, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Just for historical perspective, indulge me.

Year Federal raise Wash area

95 2.00% 3.22%
96 2.00% 2.54%
97 2.30% 3.33%
98 2.30% 2.45%
99 3.10% 3.68%
00 3.80% 4.94%
01 2.70% 3.81%
02 3.60% 4.77%
03 3.1% 4.27%
04 2.7% 4.42%
05 2.5% 3.71%
06 2.1% 3.44%
07 1.7% 2.64%
08 2.5% 4.49%

Rightly or wrongly, that's how it was apportioned. I just don't see any tremendously large increases overall. Not even in some years where the economy (okay, the stock market and the TSP) did very well. I see that in 1995, the C fund had a return of 37.41%, a return of 33.17% in 1997, -9.14% in 2000, but no obscenely large raises. Well, relative to Enron, AIG, GM and their like.

Anyway, I'm certainly happy to have a job that I love and am good at, particularly these days. I just wish that the pay tables were out BEFORE the open season was underway, and the CFC drive (I increased my donation by 30% already), etc. It would make sense to have that bit of business done and announced first, rather than later in the year. I guess we're lucky that we know this early in the process. At least once the new pay raises didn't show up until March, or later.

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 9:40 AM | Report abuse

Earned? How about "received a gift of a 2% raise" or "will steal an additional 2% of their salary from working Americans"

Maybe one of the high paid government workers can determine the best day for the coming new American holiday "La Fête Nationale" (or Bastille Day) because it will soon be here.

Posted by: DeweyDecimal | December 9, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

An employee in the federal sector makes significantly less than what an employee in the private sector would make with the same skill set. To accuse such workers of getting a pay increase he/she doesn't deserve ignores the fact that many such workers are gladly earning less money than their peers in the private sector because they value giving something back to their country. I doubt these are the people you really intend to direct your anger and spite towards.

Keep in mind that many federal workers in the capital area (the overwhelmingly vast majority of whom do not work for any political figures) in fact live nowhere near the beltway. Those lovely beltway homes are only in the price range of the private sector lawyers, lobbyists, and contractors making the real money. Rather, the average federal worker has had to move many dozens of miles into Virginia or Maryland because cost of living increases for federal workers have simply not kept up in what is one of the most expensive cities in the country.

Granted, everyone is hurting, but your average federal worker is not trying to screw the everyday American . . . if they were, they wouldn't have signed up for the federal sector in the first place.

Posted by: grlb | December 9, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

I wouldn't spend that FY '11 pay raise just yet. This absurdity- pay raises to combat private sector competition- is such a farce it's insulting that DC would think they could continue to perpetuate this lie. I believe that DC knows that this chicken-and-egg argument of raises to keep up with cost of living (vs. the reality is that it's the other way around. Guaranteed fixed pay in abundance creates this disparity) but chooses to propogate this falacy vs. the alternative, that they're ignorant and dellusional. The truth is that the presence of this type of legislation in this day and time virtually guarantees that FY '11 won't even exist. That means exactly what you think it means. This country has had it with Washington DC- every pay raise, every generational theft legislated as economic stimulus, every wasted dollar of this left agenda, just pushes us closer and closer to an ultimate and unavoidable fate that promises that government will have other things to worry about than their cost of living, in I predict less than 2 years. Enjoy your 2%, my friends.

Posted by: Hank_Rearden | December 9, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

While I don't think that Social Security recipients shouldn't receive an increase next year, there were plenty of people who were really, really angry that they received an increase this year.

Social Security Announces 5.8 Percent Benefit Increase for 2009.

Oh, here's a link to a table with the year and the COLA adjustment to social security. The "best" year (thanks to horrible inflation the year before) was in 1980. That was the year that the COLA was 14.3%. In 1986 and 1998 the COLA was 1.3%. Ouch.

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

"The government uses contractors because most government workers are not competent enough to perform the work themselves."

Whatever! The govt uses contractors because they line their congressman/woman's pockets every year. It's dreadfully obvious that a lot of $$$ is wasted on overhead and much more for extremely mediocre work, by contractors. USA... a lot of $$$ to be saved there if we clean that mess up (but trust me we never will... corruption galore).

The rest of you bashing on federal govt for pay increase and citing your poor old situations need to get a life... losers! There are pay disparities across the board for everyone in the USA and it's a larger issue that must be dealt with, somehow. Get your heads out of your you know what and stop electing the same two parties in mass every election. Maybe then we can change something, because unless prices come down or pay goes up for everyone (including Federal employees) we're all going to continue to suffer in this ridiculous 8 - 5 routine.

Posted by: icolbowca | December 9, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

I'm a fed employee with a husband who has been out of work for almost a year. This 2% I am getting may mean the difference between keeping my home or being on the street. I too was puzzled as to why SSA benefits were not going up - but there isn't much I can do about it. I wish things were different all around. Flame me if you must but we are struggling too.

Posted by: mango12 | December 9, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

to grlb: if I understand you correctly, you are saying that the tens of thousands of federal workers that keep multiplying as programs get invented are working because of a sense of patriotic duty and willingness to give back to their country. You may be right, but I submit that it is an infinitesimal number of them that may be driven by that desire. It is convenient to push altruistic motives when people in effect are driven by self-interest. Humans irrevocably either seek pleasure and avoid pain. The choice to work in the government sector is exactly that, a choice. If they are so altruistic, maybe they should refuse the raise. An another thing, the government sector is not so far off in the compensation scale when you throw in all the benefits that come with it. Just check how fast your out-of-pocket expenses for health insurance have been climbing year over year. Oh, and before you use that to make a case for "government health reform" check how government regulation has played into those increases.

Posted by: vraban | December 9, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

This is unbelievable. The taxpayers have to fund raises for deadbeat federal hacks!
They deserve 10% paycuts, not raises.
The phoney studies that show they are underpaid are a joke. When you include all benefits most are way overpaid.

Posted by: bnichols6 | December 9, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

Where on earth is the justice in this pay increase for public employees? How far would one have to go to show one government employee that is having trouble paying his bills each month. In turn, how difficult would it be to find a senior citizen that is not suffering the effects of not working and being forced to live on Social Security that does not receive a cost of living adjustment this year? This raise smells a lot like current politics! It is my sincere hope that every Grey Panther in this country makes the decision to wipe this government clean of current politicians that voted for this bill--including Mr Obama if he signs the legislation.

Posted by: riccardo1 | December 9, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Infuriating - the Federal government is one of the few places hiring, Stimulus money is sent to save public sector jobs, the DC area has the lowest rate of unemployment (or one of the lowest), the government is way overstaffed, the group of people least concerned about their jobs are - you guessed it Federal employees......This should be front page news. This is wrong wrong wrong.

Posted by: peru1 | December 9, 2009 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Hey agressive independent jerk and all you other jerks READ the ARTICLE it says pay imbalace is what locality pay is to address and the public sector is 26% below the private sector CAN YOU READ or do you blithly go about your day lost in redicluous thought about non existant problems like aggressive jerk? Federal workers mostly lower grade barely get buy try raising a family on a GS 5 to 7 pay grade

Posted by: NSODC | December 9, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

To all that are complaining about the raise, it boils down to the tortoise and the hare. You all decide the fast track of the private sector to get payed and now complain about the federal employee who diligently has pursued a career with more stability of employment.

We have endured the constant belittling jokes of the US populace, but in fact, federal agencies hire the most educated and articulate people around. I would compare my background and education to any of you. Some of us enjoy the public services we provide to all of you. Also let it be known I pay almost 20% of my own salary in taxes as well.

Everyone in the US has had the same opportunity to become a federal employee

Posted by: kennyp80 | December 9, 2009 10:08 AM | Report abuse

As a current student (MBA/MPA), the only way that the government would ever compete for talent with the private sector is by destroying the private sector.

Posted by: kyleanewell | December 9, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Washington DC is recession proof. Sadly, the rest of the country is not. How the hell do we stop this run-a-way train?

Posted by: jefflocke | December 9, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

Well, you can sit there in your plumbing-free Idaho log cabin and shake your fist at it, or you can come to DC and get yourself some of it. Who's smart?

Posted by: TheLeaver | December 9, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I don't see why some people on here are outraged at a 2% raise. First off, inflation is probably going to be around 2%, so it's not like they are making more money.
Second, most government workers are taking a paycut to work for the gov. This article points out that gov workers make 26% less than private sector workers.
Lastly, very few gov workers are rich, far far from it. Yeah its a steady job, and right or wrong, hard to get fired from, but starting pay is mostly around $12 an hour. I started with Dept of Agriculture and made $9/hr in 2004. Living in LA thats not a living wage by any means. None of my co-workers lived closer than an hour from work. So before you bash the 'rich fed worker' look at the facts

Posted by: erikszpyra | December 9, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget many federal workers have unions and are a powerful voting block in elections. I work for a local government that implemented a wage freeze in '09 and I doubt we get an increase in '10 either. A local city has just announced probable layoffs in '10. State and local government can't turn on the printing presses!

Posted by: irtnog2001 | December 9, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

As a veteran and current federal worker, I think the pay raise is fair for now. I spent 11 years in private industry and still haven't achieved the same salary I had then as I do now as a fed. The decision to go fed was mine and mine alone. I gave up private sector growth for fed gov't stability during a massive growth period and it has paid off.

DHS has a mandate to hire thousands of folks over the next couple of years. Why don't some of you complaining get of your rumps, get educated and apply for one of those fed jobs? Then when the economy turns around and the private sector is screaming for folks you can sit back and enjoy your minimal 2% raise year after year as the pay gap widens again.

Nobody was complaining about the 3-4 % fed raises a couple of years ago. Why now? the same way I did it.

Posted by: Tigersgirlfriend20 | December 9, 2009 10:26 AM | Report abuse


Posted by: DagnyT | December 9, 2009 10:27 AM | Report abuse

to TheLeaver:

If we all left our homes (plumbing free or other) and came to Washington to get ourselves "some" the Federal Government revenue stream would dry up. You really don't get it, do you? If everyone is sucking off the pigs tit, who feeds the pig.

Posted by: jefflocke | December 9, 2009 10:29 AM | Report abuse

I see where several Feds said they would have been happy with no raise. I commend them and am confident they will all return their increase. They can return it to: Bureau of the Public Debt
Attn Dept G
P. O. Box 2188
Parkersburg, WV 26106-2188

I think the Post should publish a list of name of federal employees that return their increase.

Posted by: Revenooer | December 9, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Private sector employees are getting pay cuts. Social Security recipients got a freeze. But thank goodness our hard working federal employees got more money. It all hard work for those union employees that we borrow and pay for.

Ever been to a government office after 4:00 in the afternoon? You can fire off an entire clip out of a machine pistol and have absolutely NO fear of hitting a federal employee.


Posted by: jukin3 | December 9, 2009 10:31 AM | Report abuse

Once again federal employees feel they should get the same pay raise as the military. Denny Stoyer, you are wrong. Like their military counterparts, most civilian federal employees work hard but, the challenges they face both domestically and abroad don't even come close to the challenges our military faces. FranknErnest, your comments are way off base. Get rid of all the overpaid contractors? I retired from the Navy after 25 years and had one of the overpaid contractor jobs for a year working with Federal employees. Doing the same job, they were paid more than me, whined all the time (complaining about work hours or god forbid, having to stay five minutes past quitting time), and one guy took off half a day almost every Friday using annual leave or from carry over of an unlimited amount of sick leave from year to year. The federal government has no choice but to hire contractors because in the long run it is cheaper and the work standard is better. If I don't perform, I don't get a raise, and certainly not automatically ever year. Up until the NSPS pay system, there was no incentive for federal employees to work harder because pay raises within the GS or WG pay bands are automatic because of a 10 steps in each pay grade and not performance based. In most cases, promotions to the next higher GS pay grades are done without competition. Plus, I can get fired. From my experience a lot of federal employees feel they are untouchable. It is very difficult to fire a federal employee. Managers describe it as among their worst professional experiences: a time-consuming, emotional and potentially litigious confrontation. Some avoid firing all but the most problematic employees; they weigh their options and decide to retain marginal workers rather than tackle the obstacles to removing them. Hopefully the federal agencies will make it easier to dump or eliminate more federal employee positions and hire more contractors which will improve efficiency and lower cost to taxpayers. Most people will NOT see a pay increase this year, including social security recipients, retired military and federal employees. Yet once again the AUTOMATIC annual pay raise our federal employees receive somehow is not enough. Don't misunderstand me, I think that most federal employees are good and honest workers (so are contractors), I just don't feel they deserve a rasie this year.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Don't forget that SS raises are a COLA, which means (for some of you cretins out there) Cost Of Living Allowance. That means that if the cost of living goes up, the benefits go up. Because of the downturn in the economy the cost of living actually shrunk, mostly because of the price of oil. The large raise they got in 2009 was based on the COL which included the price of oil in 2008. Do you remember what that was?
I might not agree of the political correctness of the 2% raises for the fed employees but tying it to the COLA's of the SS recipients is stupid.

Posted by: mikex2e7n5 | December 9, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: buzn | December 9, 2009 9:37 AM
"Those complaining about social security, what did you do that is so great for the nation that the federal government needs to take care of you? Quit whining and suck it up."

That is the most ignorant and nonsensical comment I think I've ever read.

Social Security recipients should be offended by this. Afterall, they have been mandated to pay into this program while federal (and state for that matter) employees DO NOT PAY SOCIAL SECURITY TAXES.

Does everybody understand that? All federal and state workers (includes teachers, police, fire, etc.) do not pay any social security tax. They have their own 401K programs. All thanks to unions.

So yeah, buzn, people receiving Social Security should be offended, as well as the rest of us who pay taxes and are forced to "contribute" to federally mandated programs that federal and state employees are exempt from participating in.

And this applies to the health care program being pushed by this administration and congress. Federal and state employees will be exempt from being taxed to pay for this monstrosity - they all get to keep their health care plan, paid for by the American taxpayer.

Posted by: NoraONeilDAR | December 9, 2009 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Ever been to a government office after 4:00 in the afternoon? You can fire off an entire clip out of a machine pistol and have absolutely NO fear of hitting a federal employee.



Ever been at NIH at 1 a.m. any day of the week? There's always people working. Yes, even on the federal holidays.

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 10:35 AM | Report abuse

It's interesting how so many folks seem to think the private sector can do no wrong, while the government provides no real benefit to our society. Let's not forget that this recession was caused largely by a private sector run amok, motivated by naked greed untempered by ethics or common sense... a private sector that immediately ran to the government for assistance rather than face the consequences of countless short sighted decisions.

Where do people turn when they want their civil rights enforced? The government. Sure they can file civil suits with their own attorneys, but try filing a suit with no courts (government employees), or enforcing a judgment with no executive branch enforcement mechanism.

When people complain that their jobs are threatened by illegal immigration, who do they turn to? The government.

Go back and read Upton Sinclair's "The Jungle" for a good description of the horrific practices of the beef industry before federal standards and the USDA came into play.

When people want to "lock up" career criminals, who do they think is going to do that? The government.

In the Justice Department alone their are 110,000 employees doing jobs that really have no equivalent in the private sector (FBI, DEA, ATF, U.S. Marshals, Bureau of Prisons, federal prosecutors, etc). Before you call them leeches, consider that without enforcement, the laws of this nation would be meaningless. What would our quality of life and the economy look like then?

Posted by: sbarden | December 9, 2009 10:42 AM | Report abuse


Get your facts straight....Federal employees do pay into the social security system

Posted by: mikex2e7n5 | December 9, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

mikex2e7n5, you are right that SS recipient pay is COLA based and unfortunately tied to the cost of oil which this year is way down from last year. So is military and federal employee retirement pay. But it illustrates the point that if our seasoned citizens can make do with the same amount of money in 2010 as 2009 so can federal employees.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Based on table 1 at the end of this website

who could possibly say that the fed workers have made out better than SS recipients and private sector workers?

Posted by: mikex2e7n5 | December 9, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

The Federal Govt MUST be brought under control. The SIZE MUST be cut and this type of payoff must end. You could cut the size of the Fed Govt by 1/3 with no noticable issues in my opinion. This is totally insane, and just when you hear of one thing that insane, another comes up right behind it. ENOUGH!

I worked in the Pentagon and DC for a number of years, and the people that work there, (civillians only) though some are good, are essentially worthless. Their attitudes are that the Govt exists to employ them, not that they're supposed to do anything. Now they get a raise when we're Trillions in debt, for what their excellence. Not to mention 30 paid vacation days per year, countless sick days and essentially free healthcare, AND GET PENSIONS! NO MORE! They're in a union, which should be outlawed, and vote for Demoncraps. This is a payoff and MUST end. As a taxpayer that is 100% commission, I provide my families healthcare and pay an insane amount of taxes and am attempting to pay off my house and save for my own retirement. These arrogant jerks continue to steal my income and are trashing MY LIBERTY! This Fed Govt is a violation of LIBERTY. I am FED UP WITH THIS! NO MORE! THROW THESE B@$tards out NOW!

Posted by: xjug1987 | December 9, 2009 10:51 AM | Report abuse

NoraONeilDAR...What? I do not know where you got the mistaken idea that federal employees do not pay social security taxes, and I will not speak for every government employee but I DO KNOW for a fact that in the DoD ALL of us pay the exact same taxes as anyone else in the private sector. I keep reading about all of the fantastic benefits in the government sector and while I am not complaining, people should be advised that we PAY for every benefit we get. Whether it be retirement, or health insurance, or any other benefit you can address, it ALL comes out of our pocket. FACT!

Posted by: still_serving | December 9, 2009 10:54 AM | Report abuse

I love all you open mouthed closed minded blogging fools who think you know everything when in fact you know NOTHING! I'm a federal contractor. I'm 41 years old and I make 11.56 and hour. Any of you oh so wise people care to explain to me how I'm overpaid? Can any of you claim to make less? I challenge any of you to live on what I make. I have house payments, utility bills, and all the other cost of living expenses and I barely make it paycheck to paycheck. This is the biggest problem with the internet. It is over- populated with opinionated fools with the intelligence quotients of a rock. I'm sorry but I am HIGHLY offended by you open mouthed idiots who talk out of your rear ends. Of course my rant doesn't apply to everyone on here, just the idiots who think all federal employees are over paid when we make less than the private sector employees who do the same job. Fools! And these people are allowed to vote. I think that needs fixing with our system. Maybe we should be given IQ tests before we're allowed to vote because obviously there are some intellectually handicapped people out there who need to be medicated and monitored instead of casting a vote that could end up affecting everyone in the nation. FranknErnest and Aprogressiveindependent I'm pointing my finger at you in particular. You should be ashamed at your lack of intelligence and never leave your home. By the way, how much does the person that waters you twice a week to keep you around make? I'm sure they're making more than I am.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Ka-Ching. Could you make it a little more next time?

Posted by: DrinkingAtWork | December 9, 2009 11:01 AM | Report abuse

The arrogant russellcrowe thinks the raise is OK. He will only get $100 per paycheck to spend on lottery tickets and beer? That means the "so deserving" Mr. Crowe makes over $170,000 a year if he gets paid bi-weekly. Gee Whiz my heart breaks for the slob. Wouldn't we all like a measly extra $100 a paycheck to squander?

Posted by: hisako1 | December 9, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Crowe makes over $170,000 a year if he gets paid bi-weekly.
How do you come up with that figure? In 2009, a GS-15 step 10 is capped at $153,200 throughout the U.S., just for perspective.

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

My goodness, I see a lot of hostility here. Guess what? I'm not surprised what many think of federal employees. I would like to say there are many good employees though, whether you care to believe it or not. Any job sector has their share of "dead wood" (yes, even in private industry).

Posted by: Berthabutz03 | December 9, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

What a bunch of ignorant people, not all but a few gems on here. I gave up a job making DOUBLE what I get in the Federal gov for a job I really enjoy and makes a difference. You dolts that think we get this from you, duh we all pay taxes and SS So I pay for MY pay raise. Pay is not that good make a lot more as contractor. Why dont your crybabbies FranknErnest and Aprogressiveindependent give back the welfare and the unemployment that you get for doing NOTHING, oh that way you would have to work and not sit here and pontificate on stuff you do not know!

Posted by: jplant2 | December 9, 2009 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I don`t begrudge federal workers periodic increases in line with cost of living etc.
Yet,I am angry that both the Congress AND federal employees get pay pops while we struggle to regain economic stability and suffer 10% unemployment.Neither the Congress nor the Federal employees should have gotten any raise at this time.Our Administartion has added more to the deficit in one year than Bush and his crew built in 8 years.We`re being betrayed by all of our representatives!

Posted by: bowspray | December 9, 2009 11:20 AM | Report abuse

Notice that all the comments posted in defense of a federal employee pay raise or how federal employees are paid less than their private sector counterparts are being made during what are considered working hours. Get back to work, after all you are getting a 2% raise.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 11:21 AM | Report abuse

If our government was operated like a business, these federal employees would have layoffs and paycuts.....not raises. It just shows you the mentality of people who are governing us. In October and November, the Treasury Department reported it spent $291.4 billion more than it took in. Why in hell's name would you give employees a raise when you have a negative bottom line. It is time to either demand resignations from our Congress and this president or take matters in a new direction in 2010 and 2012. This is tryranny. Our forefathers would never allow this kind of behaviour.

Posted by: WeMadeAmistake | December 9, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

"federal (and state for that matter) employees DO NOT PAY SOCIAL SECURITY TAXES.

Does everybody understand that? All federal and state workers (includes teachers, police, fire, etc.) do not pay any social security tax."

I have to correct you here:
State and Federal workers DO pay into Social Security. There was a time years ago that Federal workers did not because of a separate retirement system called the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS).

Posted by: bnhaus | December 9, 2009 11:22 AM | Report abuse

hey some of us get lunch breaks so pay attention to detail that is why I am getting a 2% raise:)

Posted by: jplant2 | December 9, 2009 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Why should government employees be penalized for the blunders of the private sector? My federal pay raises were modest and consistent through the years when private sector employees in comparable positions were earning outrageous bonuses and salary increases. I'm by no means rich and my benefits are very similar to my peers' in the private sector. The unemployed should focus their outrage on the fact that billions of bailout funds went the line the pockets of CEO's rather than focusing on an economic recovery.

Posted by: dmk_250 | December 9, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Skowronek. $100 after tax of 25% is $133. $133 is 2% of $6650. Bi-weekly pay is 26 pay periods. 26 X $6650=$172900. That's how. I don't know from GS squat. I work my butt off in the private sector.

Posted by: hisako1 | December 9, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

Earn? Are they working 2% longer?

Because if not, then they are just being HANDED a raise, not earning it.

Posted by: TheMSMControlsUs | December 9, 2009 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Had enough? Boycott the 16th Amendment. Just say NO to the federal income tax.

Posted by: devan95 | December 9, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

As a federal employee, I'm fine to go with no pay raise this year, if you will give me the 15-20% bonuses my private sector counterparts get during the fat economic years

Posted by: giantsfan | December 9, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

Skowronek. $100 after tax of 25% is $133. $133 is 2% of $6650. Bi-weekly pay is 26 pay periods. 26 X $6650=$172900. That's how. I don't know from GS squat. I work my butt off in the private sector.
1) Unless he's SES, he doesn't earn more than $153,200.

2) I could net an additional $100/pay period or more, in any number of ways. Here's several:

If I decreased my retirement contribution, didn't contribute to the CFC, didn't participate in the FSA program, dropped family health insurance, fiddled with my withholdings.

So, it can be done without a huge salary.

As I'm ill, I'm staying home and using my sick leave. No one wants me to share this particular gift of the season. I hope none of you get it, either.

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 11:40 AM | Report abuse

This accross-the-board raise is outrageous. A person retired today, who has worked his entire life without government support (actually fearing the government more than his competitors), with no retirement plan other than what he has put together himself, can get less than 2% return on really safe CDs or Treasuries on the few hundred thousand he may have saved. Meanwhile, our governments at all levels have actually devised plans to punish the prudent and reward the impetuous, the unwise, the greedy, and their own incompetence and lack of humility. This is now and has always been about power and control by people who believe that because they are smart, prestigiously educated, privileged, wealthy, or politically cunning whatever they do must be better than what anyone else would do. They seem to think this even when they admit that they don't actually know what happened or what to do. I urge everyone to read everything written by Nassim Taleb, author of The Black Swan. We must "robustify" our personal lives (at least, seeing that we are helpless to influence the benighted) against the actions of these idiots.

Posted by: edave | December 9, 2009 11:41 AM | Report abuse

We need a revolution, a taxpayers revolt. This is absurd. In our manufacturing business, we have cut hours and pay by 25%. We have laid off 35% of our workforce. People in Washington, DC do not have a clue!

Posted by: agoodmcq | December 9, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

jplant2, while you may be at lunch right now maybe you should pay more attention to detail and note the times some of these comments are posted, i.e. 9:51 AM, 9:56 AM, 10:15 AM, 10:16 AM and on and on. Get back to work.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

agoodmcq I am doing a job you nor most people can not that is not slamming you but I am doing a job that I have been trained for for over 20 years in the military, if I do not do it who will do it? To get outraged over a 2% raise for people who risk their lives doing their jobs is a outrage. Now for Congress to give themselves a raise makes me angry if they were private sector they would be fired for incompantance that is who you need to be mad at.

Posted by: jplant2 | December 9, 2009 11:53 AM | Report abuse

Folks, some facts to remember:

SS Increaes since 2005
2005 4.1
2006 3.3
2007 2.3
2008 5.8
2009 0.0
5yr total 15.4

Fed Employee Increases
2006 3.1
2007 2.7
2008 3.5
2009 3.9
2010 2.0
5 yr total 15.2

Keep in mind the Federal is an average and in my area of Rest of the US we get about 10% less than average.
So SS has historically been a little better in increases than FW.
As compared to industry, we receive comparable salaries and annual bonuses of less than 2%. I know of persons working in industry who get bonuses in good years as high as 100% of salary and maybe nothing in the bad years. So the comparison is hard to do but in reality the market forces have industry slightly higher than gov. but gov. has security.

Posted by: DaveFL | December 9, 2009 11:54 AM | Report abuse

Remember we will be sharing in the governments socialist program soon, so hope we get all these raises now. You all voted for him.

Posted by: kennyp80 | December 9, 2009 11:57 AM | Report abuse

naneville yes there all kinds of people are on different shifts so we do not all take breaks at same time and how do you know they might be at home today? Bad weather in area last night. Or they might just be doing nothing that is a problem with Fed but it exists in the private sector also.

Posted by: jplant2 | December 9, 2009 11:58 AM | Report abuse



Posted by: jplant2 | December 9, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Dems know they are going to lose alot of votes with ObamaCare. Hoyer knows he has to take care of the many Govt employees in his district if he wants to get reelected.

Posted by: dcharlson | December 9, 2009 12:02 PM | Report abuse

jplant2, I applaud your military service (I too served 25 years) and appreciate your hard work. Perhaps you deserve your raise and I'm not outraged over that. What I'm outraged over is the fact that a lot of federal employees this year feel like every year as if it is not enough. Check this out:

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 12:16 PM | Report abuse

Thank god we're getting SOMETHING for the Civilian employees. Living and working in the Northeast, it's expensive.

I don't know where a lot of you get off talking about how federal employees are lay-abouts, but those CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES that I know that work in the military agencies work hard and long hours to be sure OUR sons and daughters are as safe as they can be when they fly their fighters and go for their cruises with the US fleet.

For decades, engineers have been receiving close to $30,000 LESS a year than private industry, and still do. It's a travesty that federal employees don't get anywhere near what they're worth.

Posted by: jstlols | December 9, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

naneville, the current time in Afghanistan is 9:50 p.m, c'mon down, we have room for you in the connex that the federal employees share as an abode.

Posted by: still_serving | December 9, 2009 12:22 PM | Report abuse

The first paragraph of this article is somewhat confusing. Was Obama against the raise or just the locality pay? Or did Obama, in true form, push the responsibility of the unpopular act on his underlings yet again?

Posted by: thebink | December 9, 2009 12:24 PM | Report abuse

To every fed worker justifying the pay raise.
Here's a history of mine. And I am just a fraction of those paying your salary through my taxes.
2001-5% pay cut
2002-100% pay cut (Company out of business)
2003-found job at $8 an hour.
2004-found job at $10 an hour.
2005-2009 worked my way up to $15 an hour.
2009-100% pay cut (Laid off because government taxes hit my company too hard)

Unemployed with no job in site. No company will hire me because of the possibility of even more taxes laid upon them to pay for health care and 'Tax & Trade', etc.

It is outrageous that the government spends trillions of tax dollars that are not there.

'We The People' need to kick every single Marxist Democrat out of office NOW!

Posted by: iamzbacku | December 9, 2009 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Feds get a 2% cola while those on social security get nothing? Obama doesn't like seniors, does he?

And I love this nonsense about a federal/private pay gap. No pension and no health insurance until medicare kicks in are HUGE benefits that most private sector employees do not get.

Posted by: 0460 | December 9, 2009 12:28 PM | Report abuse

So retirees and Social security get "0" but fed employees need a raise!

This administration is going a long way to guarantee that once power returns to the people they will be very tempted to take it out on the inhabitants of the "Federal" city and all of the other employees who live in a separate protected universe.

I suppose we should be happy that they didn't get 5 or 10%!

Posted by: peteinny | December 9, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

This is an outrage. How in the hell do they get that "26% pay gap" from the private sector?
I have worked for the Federal government and the private sector. Although there are many fine people working for the govn't, large numbers couldn't get jobs or keep them in the private sector, much less get the salaries and benefits they receive from Federal employment.
Further, when has there ever been a RIF from the government? Huh? Even when Clinton "shut down the government" he paid them to stay home.
The job security is worth a bundle!!! Especially now when almost everyone in the US is fearing the pink slip.

Posted by: parkbench | December 9, 2009 12:29 PM | Report abuse

naneville, you should be one of the first in line for the mandatory IQ test. But opinions are like rear ends. Everyone has one but the intelligent people don't use theirs for talking. I posted my salary above, which btw is really noone's business. I earn every penny I make. I do four seperate jobs and get paid (barely) to do 1 of them. Fortunately people like you show how much you know with every keystroke you make. Am I hostile? Yes. Am I insulted by you and your ilk? Very much so. I CHALLENGE YOU TO LIVE ON MY SALARY FOR 1 YEAR. Accept the challenge or accept the fact that you are totally clueless.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 12:31 PM | Report abuse

So is everyone enjoying the change yet? The Social Security Administration announced that there would be no cost-of-living adjustment for Social Security payments in 2010. SSA's announcement was based on a report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is the first time since the cost-of-living adjustment was implemented in 1975 that there has been no adjusted increase for Social Security benefits. They got theirs though.

Posted by: enigmaforever | December 9, 2009 12:35 PM | Report abuse

still_serving, no need to. I did my fair share, almost 25 years of military service. Besides, you are free to go at any time, but all the tax free pay and allowances you receive must be incentive enough for you to stay. In all honesty, I appreciate your service though. In fact, I feel if you are are deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan as a federal employee you deserve the same pay raise as our military. Otherwise, you should take your 2% and be happy with it.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Btw, before you show your all-encompassing intelligence again and say something hyper-intelligent like get back to work (as if I care a bit about what you want) I am on my hard earned vacation. I don't make enough money to go anywhere, even to a movie, so I'm sitting at home replying to non-informed yet overly-opinionated posts like yours.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 12:46 PM | Report abuse

Its funny that most private sector folks slam the govies and now they are pissed at us for making a good decision and choosing to work for the government when thing are going bad for them.

I remember when I got out of the military and everyone was telling me to go to the private sector cause I could make a killing pay wise with my IT background, but I chose the Government. And I make an middle income salary. If i get a raise I will take it, if I don't then so be it. I know my contractor counterparts will be getting around a 5% increase, but hey thats what the Government is paying the contract.

like some one else posted do what we did.

Don't be hating us.

Posted by: kennyp80 | December 9, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm glad that the government still has enough (of our) money to give itself a raise. In the mean time, many of us are struggling without work or with salary cuts in the private sector.

I'm down 40% in my income this year, and many of my friends and neighbors are worse off than me.

I've taken on side work and am trying to launch a business to make ends meet. Many of us are working harder for less. Anti-Obama Stickers

Posted by: RightWingInc_com | December 9, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

They get two percent raise while military retirees and veterans on disability get none.

Posted by: ereilad | December 9, 2009 1:01 PM | Report abuse

the non-institutionalized disabled depend on the support of others to live quasi-independently. If the ssa cost of living increase is not available, other subsidy or savings should be in place to support this 1st choice alternative thereby decreasing the level of need for the 2nd choice of comparably much more expensive and less attractive facility living which requires government funding in order to exist.
For example, a disabled SSI reciepient may recieve $450 per month with medicaid and no food stamp eligibility or other income. Another person must contribute all other expenses and support in order for the disable individual to remain in the home.
Compare this to approximately $3K or more per month in federal support to a facility for that same individual if family support is unavailable.

The cost of living may not have increased but inflation and the cost of enabling the disabled to remain in the home suffers and will increase.

Posted by: sharonawingate | December 9, 2009 1:05 PM | Report abuse

What formula was used to give this pay raise; and why wasn't it used for Social Security also? And, to give the military more, Is totally unacceptable. Gives me another reason to NOT support any united states military members, no matter what they are doing.
I don't even know what to say. Love the war/hate the war, but to have such apathy for the men and women who voluteer, answering a call of duty so many of us ignore, to fight and die protecting your right to turn a blind's sickening. May God Bless the men and women who serve, selflessy, and may God Bless the families they leave behind, and even those thave choose not to support them.

Posted by: bdries | December 9, 2009 1:06 PM | Report abuse

The truth is every year our health insurance raises and this 2% raise might cover that if I'm lucky. Quit your crying people. I wont see an extra penny on my check.

Posted by: sixpackokc | December 9, 2009 1:09 PM | Report abuse

"george bush gave the fed employees a 4.9% pay hike."

If you are talking about the year 2000, please note that the federal raise was 3.80% (4.94% is what those in the DC area received--some areas got more than 4.94%, others less), and that this was legislation that was passed in 1999. Or was supposed to be passed in 1999, it may have carried over into 2000. I don't know and I'm not inclined to look it up.

Oh, hey, neat. Trivia:

Presidential pay history
Date established Salary Salary in 2009

September 24, 1789 $25,000 $566,000
March 3, 1873 $50,000 $865,000
March 4, 1909 $75,000 $1,714,000
January 19, 1949 $100,000 $906,000
January 20, 1969 $200,000 $1,175,000
January 20, 2001 $400,000 $487,000

Posted by: Skowronek | December 9, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

The "raise" should be 2 oz. lead.

Posted by: alisonhynes | December 9, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

Hey, for all who don't like it, let's downsize government. First, we'll get rid of the folks working in the unemployment section! Then, we'll get rid of the folks working in the Social Security section. Then, we'll get rid of the folks working in the Medicare/Medicaid section(s). Once those sections are all gone, we'll see if the money saved in employee costs and not handing out checks from those sections doesn't help a bit.

Oh, and "eaglehawkaroundsince1937", you rock!

Posted by: board_post1 | December 9, 2009 1:13 PM | Report abuse

AlphaWolf68, what are you talking about. Am I offended by your comments, no. As far as being clueless, you have no idea what experiences I have been through. I know what it is like to live in poverty. I just didn't choose to stay there.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 1:14 PM | Report abuse

Name the last year Federal workers failed to receive a pay raise. Sounds of crickets chirping.

Posted by: slim2 | December 9, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Name the last year a Wal-Mart employee didn't get one.

Posted by: kennyp80 | December 9, 2009 1:25 PM | Report abuse

How many of you federal employees are aware that Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, scaled back a proposal that would have required all federal employees to move from FEHBP (the federal health insurance program) to state-based health exchanges so it applied only to members of Congress and their staffers. The Senate Finance Committee passed a narrower version of the amendment in Sept. by unanimous consent. This vote occurred without objection from either side of the aisle, moving all or some of FEHBP participants into a newly reformed health care system will be ongoing as the Congress moves to finish the bill this year. The above info was included in a NARFE email I received in October 2009. You had ALL better open your eyes to what Congress is attempting to do with this so-called health care plan they say everyone wants. No matter what type of health plan they end of approving I can almost assure you that they are going to see that THEY are taken care of and be damned to the rest of the people in this country! Whether or not I get a pay raise or not is the least of my worries when I read about some of the stunts Congress is trying to get away with. I'm a retired federal employee and I assure you I did not vote for the community organizer we now know as the president of this country. He states (just in the last day or so) that "we have to spend our way out of this recession." My question is: how does anyone spend their way out of anything? We're all in deep trouble in this country; it's just that most people don't realize it yet.

Posted by: GeorgiaFed | December 9, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

How many of you federal employees are aware that Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, scaled back a proposal that would have required all federal employees to move from FEHBP (the federal health insurance program) to state-based health exchanges so it applied only to members of Congress and their staffers. The Senate Finance Committee passed a narrower version of the amendment in Sept. by unanimous consent. This vote occurred without objection from either side of the aisle, moving all or some of FEHBP participants into a newly reformed health care system will be ongoing as the Congress moves to finish the bill this year. The above info was included in a NARFE email I received in October 2009. You had ALL better open your eyes to what Congress is attempting to do with this so-called health care plan they say everyone wants. No matter what type of health plan they end of approving I can almost assure you that they are going to see that THEY are taken care of and be damned to the rest of the people in this country! Whether or not I get a pay raise or not is the least of my worries when I read about some of the stunts Congress is trying to get away with. I'm a retired federal employee and I assure you I did not vote for the community organizer we now know as the president of this country. He states (just in the last day or so) that "we have to spend our way out of this recession." My question is: how does anyone spend their way out of anything? We're all in deep trouble in this country; it's just that most people don't realize it yet.

Posted by: GeorgiaFed | December 9, 2009 1:30 PM | Report abuse

This is outrageous. It is time for term limits and clean house. And, the Obamanation wonders why his poll numbers are sinking like a rock? He and is merry miscreants are bankrupting this country at the cost of the tax payers.

NO ONE GETS RE-ELECTED IN 2010 - they are all corrupt CROOKS!!!!

Posted by: magsthecat1 | December 9, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

Interesting.....we Georgia state employees not only don't get a raise, but we get 3 days off this year WITHOUT pay.

Posted by: cg205 | December 9, 2009 1:45 PM | Report abuse

Congress, How can you give a raise when you do not have the money?
The pay should be cut to save money! Isn't that the responsible thing to do?
No one questions the worth of the employees but we do question Congress!!
Ladies and Gents of Capitol Hill, your brewing a storm!!

Posted by: SteveJax1 | December 9, 2009 1:51 PM | Report abuse

SS Increaes since 2005
2005 4.1
2006 3.3
2007 2.3
2008 5.8
2009 0.0
5yr total 15.4

Fed Employee Increases
2006 3.1
2007 2.2 (Records show 2.2 not 2.7)
2008 3.5
2009 3.9
2010 2.0
5 yr total 14.7

Posted by: bnhaus | December 9, 2009 1:55 PM | Report abuse

"...Further, when has there ever been a RIF from the government? Huh? Even when Clinton "shut down the government" he paid them to stay home..."

Parkbench, that isn't true. My brother in law was furloughed and he wasn't given a dime during that furlough or given back pay when he returned. As a result, he almost lost his house. Know the facts before you spout out things like that.

Posted by: jstlols | December 9, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

naneville: I never claimed to know what experiences you've been through. You chose to get out of poverty. Good for you. But with the shape the economy is in I don't have that luxury. I have to stay where I am until jobs open up elsewhere. Is it my fault that I do a good job and deserve a raise? No, that is a goal I set for myself. I take GREAT pride in doing my job well and being compensated for the job I do is the American way. Is it my fault that the economy is collapsing? No more than it is your fault. I'm basically forced to work for what little I make and I take it and I'm thankful for it but I make my contritution to our society. My point is don't blame us for the mistakes of others in power. So we're in the right place at the right time. We're the fortunate ones in these troubled times but if you won't accept my challenge and live on my salary then your comments are pointless. Jobs doing what I do in the private sector pay $17 to $22 per hour but noone I can find is hiring so I take $11.56 an hour to do the same job. And you want to whine about a 2% increase? Accept my challenge or quietly go away. I mean what's it to you anyway? Are these 2% increases going to cost you one more penny? I highly doubt it. Do we deserve a fair day's pay for a fair day's work? Absolutely. Btw, I apologize for the tone of my remarks. You just probably don't realize the offence and ignorance of your comments.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 2:08 PM | Report abuse




Posted by: KPSMITH1 | December 9, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

AlphaWolf68: I don't think it is your fault to "be in the right place at the right time" as you put it. It is the fact that a raise is being given to a group of people who depend on the taxes of the private sector to exist is getting a raise. Your fault, nope; the "leadership" or lack thereof, absolutely. If the engine that fuels government payroll is sputtering, why should government employees get a raise? It is just wrong and indicative of the lack of politician common sense. You are lucky, yes, to have oblivious incompetents in charge! You are fortunate in these troubled times you say and indeed they are troubled. But if the taxbase government supports is shrinking, why is government expanding? Is there any rationale to grow government by taking more of a group that is making less? Please stop drinking the is really bad for you. Merry Christmas!

Posted by: vraban | December 9, 2009 2:20 PM | Report abuse

I find it ironic (and frustrating) that people complain about federal employees getting a 2% increase when federal retirees and SSA recipients aren't getting any COLA this year, but in the last 2 years, when they got much larger COLA increases than working federal employees, none of them complained that they got too much and offered to return the excess above and beyond what the federal employees received. Apparently, they LOVE COLA when it works to their advantage, and think it unfair when it doesn't.

Posted by: AGoodGuy | December 9, 2009 2:23 PM | Report abuse

AlphaWolf68: Don't misunderstand me. I'm not whining about federal employees getting a 2% pay raise. I'm saying that while the economy is in turmoil federal employees should be happy with any pay raise. While the private sector offers better pay it also has more risk, I know first hand as I was laid off at the end of September. Luckily I saved money over the years and have my military retirement to fall back on, plus my wife is working. I respect any hard and honest working person no matter what they make. I always tell my son it doesn't matter how much you make it is how you manage it. A person making a million a year will go broke if they spend 2 million. Money doesn't make a pesron any smarter. You obviously know the art of money management. And yes, you do deserve a fair day's pay for a fair's day work. As far as your challenge, I accepted it many years ago and humbly say if I offended you I apologize.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

My apologies to everyone on this board for my reactions to some posts. Sometimes I forget how meaningless these boards really are and today I let some posts disturb me more than I should have. The truth of the matter here is that our system is broken and it's never going to be fixed. The nation's biggest problem we will ever face is the rule of political parties. As long as there are political parties we will never have free thinking leaders in this country, we will only have leaders whose ideals must be bent to coincide with their parties' ideals and interests. George Washington was opposed to political parties for a reason. We're experiencing that reason now and have been for over 200 years. Our system has been broken for a very long time. Another thing I have issues with is that unless I'm mistaken the majority of the population lives in a class I would describe as less than being rich. These people are the backbone of our country yet we have NEVER had a president with our problems and from our backgrounds. Every single one of them has been rich. Our forefathers left England and other countries to come to America to escape tyranny and oppression and so now instead of 1 out of touch dictator we have what? Over 500 of them and they can't agree on much because they don't dare betray their parties for fear of losing their power, not for fear of betraying the loyalty and needs of the people who put them in office. I recommend everyone watch Brewster's Millions and follow his approach to solving local political problems but on a national scale. Vote for None of the Above. Other than that I just don't see any peaceful way to remedy our nation. All of this is just my opinion of course and should be taken with a grain of salt. Again, sorry if I offended or aggravated anyone. These are very stressful times for us all. Peace and happiness to everyone. AlphaWolf68 out.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

As a retired fed employee for 20 years who worked at the lowest grade level and am now living on SS I think that the people who put these increases into effect are nuts the salary I earned even with the 2% still falls well below the level the people in Washington make. By the time I pay taxes and health insurance and life insurance I have less than russell crowes $100.00 for the month Obama's healthcare program if it is run anything like the fed health program will end up costing us trillions of dollars my gov run health care has gone up $100.00 this year alone because the Insurance Companies do not want to deal with the government. After having one health insurance Co for 18 years I now have to pick something else and the cost is $100.00 more than I was paying 2% why bother

Posted by: yllennoc2 | December 9, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, all you federal employees are a bunch of whiny babies. Do you really truly believe that you deserve a pay increase at all during these economic times? You are crazy, and every person involved in authorizing it should lose their job! There are taxpaying American citizens out here that don't have jobs, or those of us that do have jobs have almost all had to take a pay cut at some point in the last year or two. This is an outrage! We need to cut government spending, giving congress and federal employees a raise is outrageous! VOTE ALL INCUMBENTS OUT in 2010! Demand all new representatives agree to cut government size and spending!

Posted by: kdpvegas | December 9, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

naneville: I was just signing out after my last post when I read your last post. I humbly apologize for my comments. You don't need to apologize to me as I was the rude one in our exchange and I am sorry. I did not respect your opinion and I am at fault for that. You, me, and everyone else in the world has or should have the right to say what they feel and what they think. I'm going through a very hard time right now and I let it get the best of me. I also think I took your posts incorrectly. Again, my apologies. You seem to be an intelligent and decent human being and at the end of the day that is what this world needs more of. Have a great day and I hope you'll accept my sincere apologies.

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 9, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

linda_521, you disgust me. Not supporting military members because they get a bigger pay raise than civilians? Good Lord, woman, how do you value risk? When is the last time a DC-based fed employee patrolled a hot-zone in the dead of the night?

I gave bone and blood for this nation so that, unfortunately in your case, people like you can vent. But venting against the people that preserve your right to vent is just FLAT WRONG.

You don't respect the freedoms you have and, as you've said, you don't respect the people that preserve those freedoms. Why don't you do us all a favor and get the hell out of this nation.


linda_521 said: "What formula was used to give this pay raise; and why wasn't it used for Social Security also? And, to give the military more, Is totally unacceptable. Gives me another reason to NOT support any united states military members, no matter what they are doing.

Posted by: woohootoo | December 9, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

Like most other people, I've become almost numb to the outlandish excesses of the Democrat dominated congress, but this is nothing short of an outrage. With a national debt that is increasing at light speed under The Current Occupant's watchful eye, and a time period during which the cost of living has actually decreased, how can they even begin to justify paying one dime extra to the feather merchants who work for the federal government?

Posted by: owlcreekobserver | December 9, 2009 2:54 PM | Report abuse

NoraONeilDAR you need to research further. I am a DoD Civilian employee under the FERS retirement program and I pay Social Security (for those of you that don't know OASDI is Old age, survivors, and disability insurance or Social Security) below is the deductions from my recent payday

per payday year to date
MEDICARE 31.85 799.44
OASDI 136.19 3,418.29
TAX, FEDERAL 211.84 5,613.87

Anyone hired after January 1, 1987 to the federal government pays social security.
The raise they are giving us this year will not cover in most cases the raise in our health insurance premiums and other insurance coverages and don't forget the tax we have to pay on that 2%.

I have almost 10k in deductions listed above that come out for Government programs that doesn't include what I pay for health/dental insurance a pay day or state taxes. Our health insurance is not cheap:

pay day year to date
FEHB 99.91 2,489.50
DENTAL 37.78 942.81

That does not include the $30 co payment everytime myself or my children go to the doctor or dentist.

I pay taxes all year long and people that earn little to no money because some of them, not all, chose not to work walk away at tax time with 5k or more from EIC. How can you get 5k back when you pay nothing in? I don't see anyone bashing them. And that is other taxpayers money they get. And they do not work for that taxpayer money. Federal employees work for their paychecks contray to what has been said here.

I am 34 years old and my retirement age is 70 years old. So do you think 36 years from now that there will be social security for me to draw. I have been a federal employee for 13 years 5 year active duty Marine Corps and 8 years as a Civilian I work hard and had to get a college education to even be competitive in the federal government and I still make anywhere from 20k to 30k less then my private sector counterpart.

We just like everyone else are struggling. And yes we are blessed to have jobs but we can be fired just like anyone else and we can be rifted (layed off). There are thousands of government jobs open all you have to do is apply and work hard just like you do in the private sector. So please do not blame us for the countries current economic problems. And I am sorry to say the government should be ashamed for not raising SS or VA disability benefits this year. But that should not be reflected on all federal employees. The decision was made by your elected officals not byederal employees.We come to work and work hard everyday just like every other American.

Posted by: USMCVETGOVEMP | December 9, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

AlphaWolf68: No need to apologize. Every one goes through tough times. Hang in there and keep doing what you are doing.

Posted by: naneville | December 9, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

FranknErnest said - Spoken like a true Kool Aid drinker. I think that it might be accurate to say in most instances that contractors in the private sector get the job done for a more competitive price than would unionized federal employees.

Hey Frank the fed is moving away from contractors because they cost too much money.

Do you also carry on about how the unionized auto workers have driven (no pun intended) the US auto industry into the ground?

you're so full of crap your eyes must be brown.

Posted by: RodMann | December 9, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

You know, these generalizations about Federal workers and "sponging off the taxpayer's dollar and barely doing any work" is complete and utter hogwash. Everyone's different and you do everyone a great disservice to so grossly disrespect those who in many cases keep this country running. I'm a GS-15, so yes, I make good money, but I also work hard - typically 10-14 hours a day, and it's difficult and stressful work. I am running from task to task all day, every day, and even with those hours I still can't get done all I would like to. And I'm not the only one. I work with teams and teams of people at Homeland Security that are all working well into the evening trying to keep this organization running, with limited staffing due to limited funding due to the public and lawmaker's insistence that taxes are BAD and government agencies should be reigned in. Here's the result - we're all stretched way too thin to do a good job, we can't hire more, and those of us who work hard have to work even harder because personnel regulations make it very difficult to properly deal with marginal performers so we have to work around them. The public, and some lawmakers, want to cut us even more, but what that means at the management level is that about 50% of my colleagues are pulling these kind of hours, ignoring their families out of devotion to the job they are providing to the public, making themselves sick - literally. I typically get home just in time to make dinner and go to bed. I do it because I am committed to doing a good job and to public service. There are a lot of us like this out here, and all these closed-minded generalizations don't change that one bit. We don't have a say in whether we get a raise or not, and we'll continue to work as hard as we can either way. Could I live without it? Yes I could. But getting it certainly makes me feel a whole lot better about continuing to make the sacrifices I'm already making.

Posted by: PerfectlyCromulent64 | December 9, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

I have enjoyed the privledge of serving 30 years in the active military and upon retiring, I entered the civilian world as one of those DC contractors. Was making very good money with an eye for a lot more. I called it stupid money- I was paid for the slightest "innovation" something I had done as an AD member for far less. Would NEVER trade my AD experience and the opportunity to stand up for our Nation. I left the private sector and became a civil servant at the request of senior leadership and a continued devotion to this Nation. Far less pay (about half) but believe in what we are doing in support of our tremendous military. Shame on those who assume civil servants are taking the tax payer for a ride -- best bargain in town second only to the finest men and women in uniform in the world.

Posted by: funbay1 | December 9, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Bush tried implementing a pay for performance system to stop giving these across the board raises. Democrats were opposed to it and voted to kill the system. Until the system changes, the federal employees have no incentive to perform at a high level - they end up getting the same across the board raise as everyone else.

Posted by: hokieengineer | December 9, 2009 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Hooah funbay1

Posted by: RodMann | December 9, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse



Posted by: NICHOLE01 | December 9, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

hokieengineer Do you know why they killed the pay for performance system. Those federal employees on the pay for performance system are getting 5% raise at minimum this year. These "stellar" performers that are getting 5% just did their jobs. For just doing your job you are a "valued employee" bam 5%. The ones who got ratings of 4's and 5's can expect anywhere from a 7% to 9% pay raise. That is why they are doing away with the system. They are getting the same raise as GS workers and then some. And you think that was the answer to the government cutting labor costs? Some of these people got 20% raises when they were promoted.

I work in a command where some of our staff are NSPS and some are GS. I can tell you without a doubt the GS worked just as hard as the NSPS employees. And because they are on the performance based system (NSPS) for doing the same quality work/their job they will get 3% to 8% more then GS. You want to complain about a federal employee's raise then research the famous Pay for performance system and complain about their raises.

Posted by: USMCVETGOVEMP | December 9, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

I am a widowed mother of 3 girls ages 3, 6 and 13. I WAS an employee for many years until a year ago when I was laid off. My husband was a fireman, an EMT and put his life on the line everyday for our community. When he died almost 3 years ago our girls started receiving his Social Security. I saved it and thank God I did. Since I was laid off I have not been able to get a job. We live in a small community, what jobs there are I am either "over-qualified" for or not qualified enough for. I have applied for a job at McDonalds and Burger King and been turned down for kids that are younger. The savings from my girls Social Security and what they now receive monthly plus the little bit I get from unemployment is what we have lived on. There are no new winter clothes this year, no dinners out or food ordered in. I plan and budget carefully and barely make ends meet. Am I mad about the federal employees getting a 2% raise when Social Security recipients get none... Yes and No... I am mad at the across the board raise... I am not mad at the military getting a raise(for putting their life on the line they are underpaid in my opinion) and I am not mad at those who work hard getting a raise. But for the federal employees who feel entitled to the raise (and yet I know they pay taxes too)... in the private sector you get a raise based on job performance... not simply because you are there and often in the private sector there are no health benefits or if there are they are so expensive you can't afford it. Nor are there stipends and travel expenses reimbursed or any of the other perks like government cars. With my debt climbing and no more savings I would just be grateful for a job.

Posted by: jlouridas | December 9, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

my apologies to franknernest for my 3:23pm post. The quote should rightly be attributed to sombreropoint38 - who i am sure has brown eyes

Posted by: RodMann | December 9, 2009 4:26 PM | Report abuse

It's OK folks. As long as we are out hear to raises taxes on, they can continue to get pay increases.

Posted by: sombreropoint38 | December 9, 2009 9:08

Fed employees pay taxes too, you ill informed idiot

Posted by: RodMann | December 9, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

jukin3 | December 9, 2009 10:31

"Ever been to a government office after 4:00 in the afternoon? You can fire off an entire clip out of a machine pistol and have absolutely NO fear of hitting a federal employee"

News flash - its 4:40pm and my whole staff is still here in our government office

Posted by: RodMann | December 9, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Why don't the people complaining abiout a measly 2 percent raise for Civil Service employees focus on the hundreds of millions paid to CEO's for sitting on their backsides while stealing the comanies blind. Bet some of them are companies you invested in yet you don't threaten to march in the streets. You sit there and take it like the lambs you are. A majority of you voted the Chosen One into absolute power and you do NOTHING when change comes to you. Well get used to change, because thats all you will have left. How much did the Chosen One GIVE to banks, close to a TRILLION DOLLARS. Focus your anger at Wall Street and the Corporate CEO's who are stealing you blind and leave the hard working lifelong civil seervice employees alone to do their jobs. I suspect if you were to actually do a salary comparison, you might just be a bit supprised that many of us actually earn considerably LESS than our civilian counterparts. So direct your perceived financial shortcoming elsewhere.

Posted by: mygt350 | December 9, 2009 4:44 PM | Report abuse

bnhaus, thanks for the correction.

A lot of people also seem confused to know that SS and FW increases are calculated by different processes. The SS increase is a function of econonic indicators which when we have a year as bad this year, can actually go negative when calculated. The rules for SS only allow the amount to go to zero so that no one in SS goes backwards. The computation of the FW increase is a function of both economic and political factors and is generally compared to the number provided to active duty personnel. The congress and the President then negotiate a final number with the congress winning most of the time. In fact, until this year Congress has pushed the number higher than the President's request. Go figure Democrats holding the line on additional spending.

Posted by: DaveFL | December 9, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

bnhaus, thanks for correcting. Folks need to know SS is calcualted on economic data and FW increase is calculatedon economic and political factors, including how much the active duty personnel receive. So comparisons are hard to align. SS calculations can go negative but law keeps them at zero.

Posted by: DaveFL | December 9, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

kdpvegas, I know it seem insensitive for FW to get a pay increase when times are as bad as hey are, but if you want to have that as a requirement, then have the same requirement to have larger than calculated increases when times are good. No such requirement exists.

Posted by: DaveFL | December 9, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Federal employees do not live in a vacuum. I am thankful that I am getting a raise this year. I certainly do know that people have lost jobs - my husband has been without a job for over a year. I knew that there would be resentment when the news of federal employees raise was announced.

Please keep in mind that we are also dealing with negative effects of the economy, even if we do have decent, secure jobs. Spouses out of work as well as extended family members, increasing health care costs, and increasing living expenses also hit federal employees.

While I do not plan to give my raise back, I did increase my charitable contributions for 2010 (payroll deduction) because I know that others may need more help. I don't know where to check the amount of charitable contributions by federal workers, but I know that it is high.

Also, some private sector employers are also granting pay raises to their workers even though there are still people out of work.

Posted by: anonmom | December 9, 2009 11:45 PM | Report abuse


On Dec. 9 you posted five comments (from 3:23 PM to 4:40 PM) defending the federal pay raise with such comments "full of crap" and "ill informed idiot" and your comments indicate that you are a federal employee on the job at 4:40 PM.

You are trying to be funny, right?

Posted by: Crater | December 10, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

vraban: You are the one drinking the KoolAid. If you don't like the fact that I get a fair day's pay for a fair day's work (which isn't that fair considering I do 4 full jobs and get paid for 1) then too bad for you. Go stand in line for your food stamps and unemployment. Who do you think pays for those?

Posted by: AlphaWolf68 | December 11, 2009 1:46 PM | Report abuse

This settles it. Fed workers are overpaid!

Posted by: irtnog2001 | December 11, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

Er, forgot to mention, I am putting in my application today!

Posted by: irtnog2001 | December 11, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

In these times of high and rising unemployment, *any* raise for federal civilians is simply obscene. I do support a raise for active-duty military, especially the enlisted ranks.

Pay should be determined by supply and demand. Right now, there are lots of qualified workers available and many federal jobs get hundreds of applicants per opening. I read that the federal "quit rate" is only about two percent! So where's the *need* for a raise? And if there is no need, why give one? Wouldn't it be better to let the taxpayers keep a little more of their money?

Posted by: LindaS3 | December 11, 2009 8:38 PM | Report abuse

Why don’t we disband the Federal Government? That way we can live in Utopia. It must have been all of those bad government employees that stole created the financial crisis that almost bankrupted the country. No wait a minute, that was the private sector Wall Street and Banker types who want less government regulations so they can provide products and services to the informed American citizenry. For all of the republicans (small r intentional) who seem to have amnesia and not remember exactly which party got us into this current financial mess, there is nothing I can do to help; you wouldn’t understand no matter how much I explained the situation.

Let me be clear, I think that the majority of posters to these types of online sites are paid cronies or just plain stupid. Americans think that government is the problem, when it is really THEY. They want everything cheap, but they want a high paying job while everyone else starves. They don’t want to pay taxes, but they want every social service known to man. They want to live in mansions, while everyone else lives in ghettos. People you need to wake up. If you want a society that has perks, it is going to cost. Now the question is, how much is it worth to you to have the kind of society you want? As Capitalists we have to recognize that the economic pie is only so big. We can’t have wars and universal health care. We can’t pay CEO’s thousands of times what average workers make and expect the system to survive. We are just plain greedy and ultimately there will be no more resources left on the planet, and we will not have to worry about a lousy 2 percent pay raise because I didn’t get one!

It’s really funny that people are so up-in-arms that government workers would receive a 2% raise while the barons of industry rake in millions in salary and bonuses. This inter-class rivalry (read poor people/workers) needs to stop. I don’t think people realize that their patronage of the same companies which ship American workers jobs offshore is the real problem. We are caught up in a system which keeps us from tearing it down simply by making us believe that if we work harder we can attain monetary riches. Well, for the vast majority of people this just won’t happen. In closing, people point your anger in the right direction, at the system and yourselves.

Posted by: srags | December 14, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

I think it's important to note this quote from the USAToday article that irtnog2001 mentioned above:
"Jessica Klement, government affairs director for the Federal Managers Association, says the federal workforce is highly paid because the government employs skilled people such as scientists, physicians and lawyers. She says federal employees make 26% less than private workers for comparable jobs."

These days, for better or for worse, most jobs like cafeteria workers or cleaners are filled by contractors. This makes the average salary of actual government workers higher. A scientist working for the Federal government makes an ok salary, but it is usually MUCH less than that scientist would receive working for a private company.

Posted by: chrisny2 | December 14, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Here's something to think about. I'm a Computer Scientist for NASA. Been a fed for 26 years. I get paid $91,000 a year and have NEVER had a cost-of-living increase (we get a "pay increase" instead). Instead, as the cost of living goes up say 4-5% we'll typically get 2.5-3.5%. So don't go thinking that we get a COLA and a raise every year. I'll tell ya after 26 years we've gotten pretty far behind the private sector in pay. This is how the 26% pay disparity figure comes about. I have to pay $6500 a year for health care alone! For those of you who think I'm lazy and over paid for designing control systems I say this: Get a degree, apply for a gov't job and GET OVER IT! You think it's easy you try it!

Oh, and by the way, it was a contractor that assembled the exploding shuttle, not the Feds.

Just my $0.02

Posted by: foemill | December 15, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Government workers really slit their own throat on this one. We can now fire one Government worker and hire two in their stead (since average Public worker salary is double private) while reducing unemployment AND creating REAL productive jobs. Something tells me those two people you hire will be more productive than the Public guy you fire also. Just a thought. Any elected official as ProCounsel said would be a hero to all.

Posted by: Nameless2 | December 16, 2009 3:32 AM | Report abuse

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