The Greater Los Angeles Area YGL will maintain an environment that educates, inspires & transforms federal employees into prized promotable assets & be models for organization management that will be admired & emulated by agencies.
0.5% Pay Increase in 2013 – Your Thoughts?
January 10, 2012 at 4:53 pm #149147
I’m sure you know by now; the White House is planning to propose a 0.5% pay increase for civilian federal employees as part of the 2013 budget. This increase comes after a two-year pay freeze but falls well below the 3.6% inflation increase AND the 1.2% base pay adjustment already written into law for 2013. For a civilian employee making $75,000/year, a 0.5% increase amounts to $7/week (before taxes).
There are many different ways to react to this news. Some react like Congressman Denny Ross (R-FL) when he said “This pay raise is symbolic at best and pure politics at its worst. Federal employees are paid better, receive better benefits and enjoy unparalleled job security, compared to their private sector counterparts. The day after he [Obama] weakens our national defense, he gives government unions a raise. Astounding.”
Others see it more like William R. Dougan, president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, who called the proposal “a breath of fresh air for all those who serve their country every day.”
Personally, I’m happy to see any increase at all. The political scientist in me understands that even though it’s only 0.5%, it sends a loud signal in Washington. I’m particularly encouraged, because I viewed the 2-year pay freeze as pre-emptive, especially when the Tea Party was striving for a 5-year pay freeze. This pay-increase justifies that stance, and I hope federal pay will not be a negotiation point in this next round of battles in Washington. I’m also happy to say “My colleagues and I contributed $60 billion to deficit reduction,” but I’m worried we’ll hit a point where our inability to attract the best and brightest will really hurt this country.
So what do YOU think? Happy? Mad? Confused? Indifferent?
January 10, 2012 at 5:18 pm #149161
Marnie A. SussParticipant
“We’ll hit a point where our inability to attract the best and brightest will really hurt this country.”
I think you hit the nail on the head there. While a raise for federal employees is political for either side of the aisle at the end of the day its about attracting and retaining the best and most innovative talent we have. America has thrived on innovation and creativity for a long time, but times have changed and we have great competitors out there exceling in new technologies on all fronts.
January 11, 2012 at 6:15 am #149159
I agree Marnie. A lot of reactionary cuts at the expense of our future. Take a look at our great state of California – education is always one of the first things on the cutting block. A school year shortened by another three weeks is a possibility next year if taxes are not raised per the Governor’s plan released last week. “The children are our future.” “Invest in our future.” We all know what the right thing to do is, but actions speak louder than words.
Back to the feds 0.5%… Government employees bringing innovation and excitement to the workplace are here for a reason and it’s not money. I truly believe that. Everyone is motivated by something different and it will be up to agency heads and local managers to motivate and challenge their good employees while being creative with rewards and praise. I hope they are up to the task during these challenging political and fiscal times.
It’s also a reason why groups like YGL exist! We work for free but love the cause… 🙂
January 11, 2012 at 12:40 pm #149157
To me I think something sounds better than nothing. But I have heard a few people say it’s almost offensive as so low – kind of like leaving a 50 cent change tip to a waitress
January 11, 2012 at 2:17 pm #149155
Having saved $Millions of tax dollars with my own initiative several times over, it’s all a slap in the face, honestly. There are other ways to save money in the personnel arena, and there are others ways to save besides personnel.
January 11, 2012 at 2:42 pm #149153
Interesting and unfortunate to hear about a potential shortening of the school year. Another problem is that schools are overcrowded, but a lot of taxpayers don’t want to vote to increase taxes. When a school gets overcrowded the education is worse because they don’t have the money to reprimand students. Some schools practically force students into the next grade because they can’t afford to fail them and have them retake the course. This was exemplified in my high school in my French class when we took tests and it sounded like this:
What’s the correct answer?
French word 1
FRENCH WORD 2
French word 3
French word 4
Safe to say the correct answer was french word 2.
January 11, 2012 at 3:31 pm #149151
Somewhat happy to have a bit more toward the guaranteed increases in other expenses. Not too happy with the amount.
January 11, 2012 at 10:26 pm #149149
I used to tell people that one of the core beliefs of hardcore conservatives is that every pay check paid out to government employees (fed, state, county, and city) is one pay check too many.
This holds true even more today than when I starting pointing it out back in 2002 or so. At that time Donald Rumsfeld tried in vain to do away with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and was only stopped when Congress intervened. He was also the brainchild and force behind NSPS.
So if an ideology doesn’t support having government employees, how do those people w/ that ideology get rid of government employees?
Well, I believe we’re experiencing it. Those people simply don’t believe anything … I mean anything, is inherently governmental. Corporate America has embraced this with fairy tale dreams of doing everything government does; cornering the market, and charging each person for services that were once paid for by our tax investments in ourselves and our country.
Take away the oxygen and regardless of the struggle the animal will die. This is what’s going on in our government to the loud applause of most of the country who is not a government employee.
The American public has a very good image our U.S. military troops, while our civil service employees barely rank above the image the public has of terrorists. Why?
Most importantly, why is there no campaign or effort to change the public’s image of civil servants?
U.S. military recruiting has tons of $$$ budgeted to their mission. The Blue Angels alone (part of Navy recruiting) must be a huge expense. Recruiting advertisements help put an image in the public’s minds. There’s no such effort to inform and educate the public about our Nation’s civil servants.
OPM did mention undertaking such a campaign last year, but I for one haven’t seen the fruits of that labor. No posters, no website, no Facebook, no smartphone app … nothing.
Even a minimal effort undertaken by the OPM Public Affairs office should produce something right?
Instead, we’ll drift into Public Service Recognition Week once again and it will pretty much come and go with little or no fan fare to bring broad public attention to the hard work and accomplishments our taxpayers’ investment produces.
Thus … the public’s image of our civil servants will remain low and conservative ideology will most likely prevail in the new fiscal reality we’ve manufactured for ourselves and we’ll be lucky if government employees get any kind of raise at all. That stated, I’m immensely happy to be employed and working hard for our country.
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