Obama to propose 1 percent pay raise for federal workers, troops

McClatchy Washington BureauFebruary 24, 2014 

President Barack Obama will propose a one percent pay raise for federal employees and members of the military in his budget, according to a senior administration official who was familiar with the proposal but not authorized to speak publicly.

The increases are consistent with raises employees and troops received this year.

Prior to this year, civilian employee pay had been frozen for three years though military pay has increased every year since Obama took office. Senior uniformed military leadership, including chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and all of the Service Secretaries, recommended the raise for troops.

The modest increase "reflects the tight budget constraints we continue to face, while also recognizing the critical role these civilian employees play in our country – doing everything from assuring the safety of our food and airways, to securing our borders, to providing health care to veterans, to searching for cures to diseases," the official said. "It also recognizes the sacrifices they have already made through prior pay freezes, reductions in awards, and furloughs due to sequestration last year."

The official said the increase will help the federal government remain competitive as will offering training.

“Today’s announcement by the President brings bittersweet news for federal workers," said Joseph A. Beaudoin, president of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association. "While the proposed one percent raise builds on the one percent raise provided this year, the figure is half of what private-sector wages rose in the last year. Although we are thankful the three-year pay freeze has ended, now that our country is back on a stronger economic footing, it is time to start closing the growing gap between public- and private-sector wages."

Obama will introduced his fiscal 2015 spending plan March 4.


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