Federal Eye: Coburn wants to repay furloughed DOT workers from Congress’s account

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) is blocking Senate passage of a bill that would compensate the roughly 2,000 Transportation Department workers who were furloughed during an impasse over federal funding for highway and transportation projects.

Coburn wants to pay the workers back with $1 million from the congressional budget, rather than tapping the federal coffers. That
proposal would cost each House and Senate office approximately $2,000.

“No one believes that the 1,992 Department of Transportation employees who were recently furloughed should suffer a loss of pay
because of Congress’ inability to maintain core federal programs,”
Coburn wrote to Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid
(D-Nev.) in announcing his hold on the bill. “Congress should offset
the expected cost of compensation by forgoing the increase in our own

Democrats had other ideas.

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