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Posted at 7:00 AM ET, 02/28/2011

Federal workers: Tell us your stories

By Lisa Rein
Lisa Rein

Eye Opener

The federal workforce got a reprieve late Friday from a threatened government shutdown, as Senate Democrats tentatively agreed to a plan from House Republicans to cut $4 billion in federal spending by targeting programs President Obama had pledged to eliminate in the next fiscal year.

The detente in Congress will keep the government going until March 18, two weeks past a March 4 deadline.

But the standoff could continue well into the spring if the ideologically opposed House and Senate cannot agree on a budget to fund federal agencies through Sept. 30, the end of the current fiscal year.

Anxiety over a possible shutdown isn't the only conversation coursing through federal agencies. Federal workers have been working without a budget since the current fiscal year started in October. The midterm elections brought more uncertainty, with House Republicans pushing cuts that would return spending either to 2008 or 2006 levels, depending on which faction is talking.

We want to hear from you! How would the proposed cuts affect you, and the work your agency does? Please tell us your stories in the space below.

And here's what readers have had to say so far:

By Lisa Rein  | February 28, 2011; 7:00 AM ET
Categories:  Agencies and Departments  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Lessons from the great government shutdown of 1995-1996
Next: NTEU's legislative conference starts Tuesday

Comments

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Posted by: fghsdfha | February 28, 2011 11:02 PM | Report abuse

That's funny. These people sound just like any other working American I'd find trying to put food on their family's table, a house to put said table in, and a nice quality of life.

You know, just like people who work in the private sector.


One can have a reasonable debate about the necessity of the size of the federal workforce, and it may be that some of these folks, fairly or not, find themselves out of work. But I very frequently find characterisations of government workers, on comment pages on the Post and even from politicians, as lazy, incompetent, and undeserving of the sympathy we would lend to any other member of the American labour force who's worried about his or her future and family in these trying times. I find this highly objectionable, and I feel that the folks who have spread these misconceptions deserve shame and condemnation.

Posted by: j762 | March 1, 2011 3:54 PM | Report abuse

Its so sad to see people blaming the messenger. The U.S. is broke. What about the people who put us here due to delusional spending habits? Time to pay the piper, laddies. You can say "its not my fault." But didn't you vote for one of these two parties that have bankrupted America? Sure you did.
The wars have cost over 4 trillion, and Obama is continuing them! Both parties have given the banks over 6 Trillion dollars!!!! Crazy! We can't even pay off the interest on our debt. Imposing 100% tax increases on every American wouldn't pay it off. Even cutting spending won't work now due to the high level of debt. Whats that Jimmy Buffet song? Party at the End of the World? Yep, thats it. Got food? Got guns? If not, you ain't got nothin'.

Posted by: shred11 | March 1, 2011 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Its so sad to see people blaming the messenger. The U.S. is broke. What about the people who put us here due to delusional spending habits? Time to pay the piper, laddies. You can say "its not my fault." But didn't you vote for one of these two parties that have bankrupted America? Sure you did.
The wars have cost over 4 trillion, and Obama is continuing them! Both parties have given the banks over 6 Trillion dollars!!!! Crazy! We can't even pay off the interest on our debt. Imposing 100% tax increases on every American wouldn't pay it off. Even cutting spending won't work now due to the high level of debt. Whats that Jimmy Buffet song? Party at the End of the World? Yep, thats it. Got food? Got guns? If not, you ain't got nothin'.

Posted by: shred11 | March 1, 2011 5:12 PM | Report abuse

Its so sad to see people blaming the messenger. The U.S. is broke. What about the people who put us here due to delusional spending habits? Time to pay the piper, laddies. You can say "its not my fault." But didn't you vote for one of these two parties that have bankrupted America? Sure you did.
The wars have cost over 4 trillion, and Obama is continuing them! Both parties have given the banks over 6 Trillion dollars!!!! Crazy! We can't even pay off the interest on our debt. Imposing 100% tax increases on every American wouldn't pay it off. Even cutting spending won't work now due to the high level of debt. Whats that Jimmy Buffet song? Party at the End of the World? Yep, thats it. Got food? Got guns? If not, you ain't got nothin'.

Posted by: shred11 | March 1, 2011 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Yet the republicans voted today to continue giving subsidies to the big oil companies that are making record profits. There is a nice 31 billion chunk of the deficit that could go away

Posted by: hart2014 | March 1, 2011 5:38 PM | Report abuse

The Federal civil service was dealt a blow by a Democratic Ex Pres Jimmy Carter and his democrap congress in l978 in passing the Civil Service Reform Act, took alway major bargaining, can't strike. We Federal Empoyee pay over 34% toward our health benes plus each year our health ins. premiums go up over 10% which we must pay each year. The public unions have gotten away with being on the public dole and must start paying for their top self benes and not just 5% or l2% but kick in at least 30%. End the union getting their health ins. from their own union, it is costing taxpayers $68 million extra, they could get it from the state.

Posted by: mightyheidi | March 1, 2011 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Lisa, just one request:

Tell O'Keefe to STOP writing about federal workers being overpaid. It is undue focus by people like him in the media that has helped to perpetuate all this denigration of the federal employees by the fanatics on the right. Until Obama came into power, GW Bush never froze pay increases for fedral employees and you never heard any whining from this hypocritical people in the press and on the right about federal employees being overpaid and with cushy benefits.

Posted by: midas20874 | March 1, 2011 10:33 PM | Report abuse

Whaaaaaaah! I went without a pay increase for a year and have been trying to survive cut after cut in my job for the last 4 years. (private sector)

It's a part of life, get used to it.

And, just to clarify, government workers are overpaid. Comapre the government jobs to those same jobs in the private sector and you'd see that.

I know numerous pepole who work for the federal government who are being paid for not doing much of anything. Let's just say they're collecting a paycheck as opposed to working.

Posted by: jwash4472 | March 2, 2011 3:05 PM | Report abuse

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