Among the major priorities of the 113th Congress will be to approve agency budgets.
But Bill Dougan, the president of the National Federation of Federal Employees, says Congress and the White House also shouldn’t make federal employees have to wait for a raise.
Bill Dougan’s Top 3 for 2013
Reward Hard Work with Modest Pay Adjustments — Federal employees have already sacrificed $88 billion in forgone pay from the two-year pay freeze and subsequent extension. They have done their part to help put our nation’s fiscal house in order. The time has come to give federal employees the modest raise they deserve. One of our foremost priorities is to ensure that federal employees get their 0.5% raise retroactive to January 1, 2013, as they were promised. Going forward, we will push for larger annual pay adjustments as the economy continues to recover
Defend Retirement Benefits from Further Erosion — Protecting and preserving federal retirement will be paramount in what continues to be an austere budget environment. Federal employees have already sacrificed $15 billion in cuts to their retirement – a figure set to grow exponentially over time. New workers must now pay four times as much into their pension each paycheck in order to get the same pension they would have received before. This change was effectively a pay cut for anyone who decides to pursue a future with the civil service. If we are to attract the next generation of cancer researchers, veterans’ doctors, and intelligence analysts, we need to offer a secure retirement. Furthermore, we must preserve the bedrock of the system – the defined benefit pension.
Fully Implement Labor-Management Partnerships Across Government
When President Obama announced Executive Order 13522 early in his administration, he introduced a powerful mechanism for improving labor management relations at federal facilities. When employees and management come together and parse out issues before they become a problem, operations run smoothly and taxpayers get more bang for their buck. Though substantial progress has been made in establishing labor-management forums at various agencies, participation is not unanimous. If we are to realize the true potential of these partnerships, we must have buy-in from everyone involved. We will work through our role on the National Council on Federal Labor-Management Relations to ensure both labor and management are engaged in meaningful partnerships.
Francis Rose is the host of In Depth, which airs weekdays from 8-10 a.m. on 1500 AM in the Washington, D.C. metro area and online everywhere. Francis has covered all three branches of the federal government as a broadcast journalist since 1998. He joined Federal News Radio in 2006, and launched In Depth in 2008 as a daily show focused on connecting federal executives to the information they need to do their jobs better.