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October 10, 2015
Budget Proposal Would Freeze Federal Pay Through 2015
Updated On: Mar 20, 2012

The GOP Budget Proposal Would Freeze Federal Pay Through 2015
By Ian Smith

Tuesday, March 20, 2012 

 below link is from FedSmith

 The GOP's 2013 federal budget blueprint released today contains a number of proposed cuts for federal workers including a 10% reduction in the federal workforce and an extended pay freeze through 2015.

The proposed cuts in the budget should not come as a shock. We reported last week that federal employees could expect some form of proposed cuts in the budget, plus given the plethora of proposals that would scale back on the federal workforce ranging from workforce cuts through attrition to freezing step increases that have been suggested since the pay freeze was first proposed by President Obama in 2010, it stands to reason some form of cost cutting via public sector workers would be utilized.

The Proposed Cuts

The budget proposes the following:

  • A 10% workforce reduction over the next three years through attrition
  • Extending the current pay freeze through 2015

It is estimated that these cuts would save taxpayers approximately $368 billion over ten years.

The impetus for these cuts is to slow the rapid growth of the public sector which has been crowding out growth in the private sector. According to the proposal, "The federal government has added 147,000 new workers since the President took office. It is no coincidence that private-­?sector employment continues to grow only sluggishly while the government expands: To pay for the public-­? sector’s growth, Washington must immediately tax the private sector or else borrow and impose taxes later to pay down the debt."

The budget proposal notes, however, that the duties of the federal government do require a strong federal workforce. So while the GOP intends to make cuts, they don't want to take them too far. Hence, the proposal says that "Pay increases and fringe benefits [of the federal workforce] should be reformed to better align with those of their private-sector counterparts."

This statement is referring to the CBO's recent study which shows that public sector wages and benefits continue to outpace those of the private sector, noting that the CBO showed that federal workers receive, on average, 16% higher pay and benefits to comparable workers in the private sector.

"The reforms called for in this budget aim to slow the federal government’s unsustainable growth and reflect the growing frustration of workers across the country at the privileged rules enjoyed by government employees. They reduce the public-­?sector bureaucracy, not through layoffs, but via a gradual, sensible attrition policy," concludes the Budget Committee.

The 2013 budget proposal is nearly identical to the one put forth by the House Budget Committee last year in terms of its approach to reducing the federal workforce. A statement from last year's proposal reads, "[The proposed budget would] boost private-sector employment by slowing the explosive growth of the public sector, achieving a 10 percent reduction over the next three years in the federal workforce through attrition, coupled with a pay freeze for the next five years and reforms to government workers' generous benefit packages."

The Path to Prosperty: FY 2013 Budget Resolution 

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Holiday Weekend Labor History
October 09
United Hebrew Trades is organized in New York by shirt maker Morris Hillquit and
others. Hillquit would later become leader of the Socialist Party - 1888
Retail stock brokerage Smith Barney reaches a tentative sexual harassment settlement with a group of female employees. The suit charged, among other things, that branch managers asked female workers to remove their tops in exchange for money and one office featured a "boom boom room" where women workers were encouraged to "entertain clients." The settlement was never finalized: a U.S. District Court judge refused to approve the deal because it failed to adequately redress the plaintiff's grievances - 1997
An estimated 3,300 sanitation workers working for private haulers in Chicago win a 9-day strike featuring a 28-percent wage increase over five years - 2003

October 10
Six days into a cotton field strike by 18,000 Mexican and Mexican-American workers in Pixley, Calif., four strikers are killed and six wounded; eight growers were indicted and charged with murder - 1933
October 11
The Miners’ National Association is formed in Youngstown, Ohio, with the goal of uniting all miners, regardless of skill or ethnic background - 1873
Nearly 1,500 plantation workers strike Olaa Sugar, on Hawaii’s Big Island - 1948
October 12
Company guards kill at least eight miners who are attempting to stop scabs, Virden, Ill. Six guards are also killed, and 30 persons wounded - 1898
Fourteen miners killed, 22 wounded by scab herders at Pana, Ill. - 1902

Some 2,000 workers demanding union recognition close down dress manufacturing, Los Angeles - 1933
More than one million Canadian workers demonstrate against wage controls - 1976

- compiled/edited by Union Communication Services 

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