GOP budget proposal would cut feds, extend pay freeze

The proposal also aims to align federal pay with private sector levels

House Republicans have released their fiscal 2012 budget proposal, which includes shrinking the federal workforce through attrition, freezing federal pay until 2015, and requiring employees to pay more for their benefits, saving an estimated $375 billion over 10 years.

Similar cost-cutting measures have appeared in recent legislation sponsored by Republicans and in recommendations by the president’s bipartisan fiscal commission last year.

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wisc.) “Path to Prosperity” proposal would reduce spending by roughly $6 trillion from the Obama administration's budget over the next decade.


Related story:

House passes symbolic bill to spur budget debate


The proposal states that salaries for federal workers “continue to outpace pay for their private-sector counterparts,” although the Obama administration has denied this argument.

“The roughly two million federal civilian workers received average compensation packages of $101,628 in 2010, far in excess of their private-sector counterparts,” the Republican proposal states. “Immune from the effects of the recession, federal workers have received regular salary bumps and cost-of-living-adjustments, regardless of productivity or economic realities,” it continues.

It adds that federal pay levels, increases and benefit packages should be reformed to align with the private sector.

The proposal also calls for the government to hire one new employee for every three who retire – resulting in a 10 percent reduction in the federal workforce by 2014 – and require federal employees to pay for half of the defined benefit they receive at retirement under the Federal Employee Pension Plan.

While Republicans are setting the stage for next year’s budget debate, congressional leaders are still wrestling over how to fund the government for the remainder of fiscal 2011.

About the Author

Alyah Khan is a staff writer covering IT policy.

Reader comments

Tue, May 29, 2012 NurseMcGyver NC

I have been in federal service close to five years. Interestingly enough, when I was hired, I was told that the Feds are not "allowed" to be the top payer in an area. I don't know who makes the rules but I can't afford a pay cut. Hey, how about we all, collectively stop filing taxes. What can they do? Guaranteed, whomever is on the ballot in November, my vote will be a write in.

Thu, Dec 15, 2011

Where are our lobbying representatives? Where are those fighting for the federal employee? What options do we have to voice our thoughts? It sounds like this year people in support of the federal employees have made no headway in the ears of Republicans or, perhaps, they do not want to hear it. Is it only Republicans wanting to cut our money or are Democrats contributing to that as well....my 2012 election vote will reflect. In essence, we are actually receiving pay cuts year after year as living costs rise, insurance, and now contributing more to pensions. I beleive in qulaity work. I am not an individaul who receives 6 figures in a government position; I folow policy and do the right thing everyday in my position...look at the government contractor who overbills for all they do. Wont this contribute to complacent employees...dont we want to attract quality employees? Where is our platform to voice our opinion...who is behind us? I cannot afford a paycut year after year until the government decides how to fix their mess. This is what it will become since government does not want to allow for any increases. Stop spending on ridiculous things in government. Common sense...our government is teetering on the brink of absurdity. I am not in favor of funding a 75K education for staffers or giving my money to people who continue to play the system and receive checks to live on while I work for my dollar. I am becoming weary of paying my mortgage, my credit card bills, doing the right thing at work simply to hear for doing all the right things, I may be one who gets slapped in the face; I may be the one who has to carry a burden. It is sinful for these millionaires in Congress to place that on my shoulders.

Thu, Jul 7, 2011

Translation of the Republican deficit reduction plan:
“We want to drastically reduce Federal employee pay and benefits just like our corporate masters have done to private sector employees. After all, why should Federal employees be immune from getting screwed?”
These fools will not stop until they’ve destroyed the middle class. Talk about killing the goose that laid the golden eggs! When that happens, look out! BTW, who cares if they were to cut Congressional pay? Everybody knows that that’s not where the money is. The money from serving in Congress comes from insider trading, perks, kickbacks, and nice fat lobbying jobs after you leave office.

Thu, May 12, 2011 red

You know something, they are comparing out salaries to a cashier in Target or Walmart! That is like comparing apples to oranges. The Republicans need to get a life and see that most federal workers are underpaid and cannot afford their pay freeze. I wish NTEU and AFGE would take a bigger stand in this.

Wed, May 4, 2011

Are they proposing a cut to House and Senate pay? Are they proposing to limit the heath insurance benefits for congressional reps after their service is ended? If $101k is the average, half of us make less than that. Some of us, much less. We are the ones who suffer when changes are made across the board.

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