1/2/13: Yesterday, the House of Representatives took up legislation extending the pay freeze for federal employees and members of Congress through the end of 2013. H.R.6726 was considered on the House suspension calendar and could not be amended. The bill passed the House by a vote of 287 to 129 but will not be considered by the Senate.
The bill’s supporters in the House wanted to make sure they were on record opposing a pay increase for members of Congress in 2013. It is disappointing, however, that the bill’s authors decided to include an extended pay freeze for rank and file federal employees in their legislation. In a letter to members of the House, NTEU National President Colleen Kelley pointed out that federal employees have been under a pay freeze since 2010 and have already contributed $88 billion toward deficit reduction. Moreover, beginning yesterday, new federal employees will see their pay drop by an additional 2.3% as a result of legislation enacted in 2012 requiring newly hired federal employees to pay more toward their retirement benefits.
NTEU maintains that federal workers have already contributed more than their fair share to reduce the federal deficit through ongoing budget negotiations. The 2013 federal pay increase, scheduled to take effect in April of this year should remain on track. This is the message we will continue to deliver to the Congress.