When it comes to pay, fairness is an elusive concept. What is too much, too little, just right? The answers depend on who’s talking, and when they’re talking.
This is why the debate about whether federal employees are over- or underpaid rages on. It’s complicated, relative, and, of course, political.
Federal compensation once again dominated government news headlines this week. Furloughs for 650,000 Defense Department civilians across the country began on Monday, guaranteeing those employees smaller paychecks this summer. Acting Internal Revenue Service Commissioner Danny Werfel said he wants to get rid of performance bonuses in 2013 to reduce the number of furlough days employees are forced to take. And the Senior Executives Association is trying to reignite a discussion of pay compression, a byproduct of the government’s imperfect pay systems. Continue reading “What Exactly is Fair in Federal Compensation?”
There’s been a lot of talk about pay freezes in the last week. The debt ceiling suspension bill the House approved on Wednesday withholds lawmakers’ pay if they don’t pass a fiscal 2014 budget resolution by April 15. Legislation that would extend the pay freeze for federal employees was introduced, briefly put on the House floor schedule, and then postponed. And then there’s the looming trio of threats that could affect the pay of federal employees: a debt default, sequestration, and the possibility of a government shutdown if Congress allows the current continuing resolution to expire.
Let’s recap how federal pay could fare under each possible scenario facing government employees this winter and spring: Continue reading “Pay Looms Large in Budget Debate”