3/13/12: NTEU today applauded Senate action in turning aside legislative language that would have extended the current two-year federal pay freeze for another year.
“Rejecting this amendment is clear evidence that many members of the Senate understand the need for shared sacrifice among every group in our society, rather than turning to federal employees for even greater contributions, especially to fund matters unrelated to the federal workforce,” said NTEU National President Colleen Kelley.
If approved, the amendment, offered by Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), would have become part of the transportation bill and the savings realized by it would have been used to offset the costs of a variety of tax breaks—including those affecting rum imported from Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, as well as for owners of motors sports entertainment complexes.
In a letter to senators yesterday, President Kelley expressed NTEU’s strong opposition to the Roberts amendment and reiterated that federal employees already are contributing $60 billion to deficit reduction through the current pay freeze, scheduled to expire at the end of this year—as well as another $15 billion from future federal employees in the form of higher pension contributions.
The Roberts amendment, the NTEU leader said, would have taken another $26 billion from federal employees, even as some in Congress continue refusing to ask either the wealthiest Americans or corporations to make any additional payments toward deficit reduction.
“Federal employees have committed their talents and energy to the service of their fellow Americans and the betterment of their country,” President Kelley said. “It is well past time to stop these attacks on their pay, benefits and rights.” She promised NTEU’s continued vigilance in the face of some two dozen anti-federal employee bills pending in Congress.