Federal workers in the United States are all set to get a pay raise from 2019 despite president Trump’s attempts to freeze all pay rises for non-military federal staff. According to a Washington Post report, congressional Republicans have tentatively agreed for a 1.9 percent wage hike for existing 2 million civilian federal workers. Congresswoman Barbara Comstock of Virginia, who was one of the persons campaigning for this wage increase, expressed her satisfaction at the agreement by stating that in a booming economy, it is essential to keep salaries competitive to attract the right talent for national security, law enforcement, medical research and more.
But another source has cautioned that it is too early to celebrate as the deal has not been finalized as yet and negotiations are still going on. The deal could also lift a freeze on salary for cabinet members of president and vice president too as cabinet members of the white house presently make $210,700. Generally, federal employees receive salary hikes according to rise in cost of living and those living in expensive locations received more cash than others though an average federal employee earns a base salary of $85,000.
President Trump had announced a freeze on federal salaries in February and made repeated affirmations stating that economy is in a serious condition. In a letter to the congress during August he had mentioned that “nation has to be put on a fiscally sustainable condition and federal agency budgets cannot sustain increases”. During August, he had signed a bill to give an increase of 2.6 percent for armed forces―the largest pay rise in a decade. Previous president Barack Obama had put pay freezes on all federal workers’ salaries during 2011 and 2013 as the economy was trying to recover from financial crisis. Mr. Trump is against simultaneous pay increase for all federal workers as it will have long-term fixed costs which fail to address current pay disparities.