Two Significant Changes to FERS

By on October 21, 2012 in Human Resources, News, Retirement with 76 Comments

Co-authored by Ehren Clovis and John Grobe

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You wouldn’t expect the “Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012” to affect federal employee retirement benefits, would you?  But it does.  In fact, it makes two significant changes to the Federal Employees’ Retirement System (FERS).

First significant change:  New employees who are hired on or after January 1, 2013 will  pay more for their FERS retirement coverage than current employees. The increase (2.3% across the board) will raise deductions for new regular employees from 0.8% to 3.1%, and deductions for new “special category” and Congressional employees from 1.3% to 3.6%.  Employees paying the new higher rate will be called FERS “Revised Annuity Employees,” or FERS-RAE.

Thinking about returning to federal service after a break?  Be warned:  “New” employees include employees who are rehired with less than 5 years of creditable or potentially creditable FERS service as of 12/31/2012.  Employees with more than 5 years of creditable or potentially creditable service as of 12/31/2012 are exempt from the new FERS-RAE provisions and will remain under FERS at the old rates.

Example:  Eric was employed under FERS from December 1997 through June 2005, then left federal service for a private sector job.  If Eric returns to federal service in 2013 or later, he will be covered under FERS, not FERS-RAE, because he had 5 years of creditable FERS service as of 12/31/2012.  But if Eric had left in 2001, he would be under FERS-RAE when he returned.

“Potentially creditable service” is service for which there are no funds currently in the FERS system, but for which redeposits or deposits can be made to FERS.  This includes FERS service for which the employee contributions have been withdrawn (aka “redeposit service”) and service for which FERS deposits can be made (aka “deposit service,” including Peace Corps and VISTA volunteer service, most Temporary service before 1989, and most active duty military service performed while on leave from a civilian federal position).

Are you thinking that FERS-RAE employees will get a larger retirement benefit, since they are paying more?  Think again: there’s no change in the way most retirement benefits are computed (see the next paragraph).

Second significant change:  The new law changes the way pensions are computed for “new” Members of Congress and Congressional staffers who begin service in 2013 or later.  Their pensions will be computed the same way as those of regular employees.  They will no longer receive a higher benefit similar to that of “special category” employees.  Yes, that’s right: they’ll be paying more and getting less than before.

One thing federal employees can be grateful for is Congress’ penchant for grandfathering current employees and shielding them from negative changes to federal benefits.  Those who are employed on 12/31/2012 and rehires who have at least 5 years of creditable or potentially creditable FERS service are exempt from the new provisions.  This should give some small comfort to current federal employees who are concerned about other possible changes (e.g., high-five, future contribution increases, etc.).

More information about the new FERS provisions can be found in the Office of Personnel Management’s Benefits Administration Letter 12-104, dated 10/3/2012.

John Grobe’s latest book, The Answer Book on Your Federal Employee Benefits, has just been released by LRP Publications. The book is written in an easy to understand question and answer format and covers all areas of federal benefits from the perspective of an employee at various stages of their career. Order your copy at shoplrp.com.

© 2016 John Grobe. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from John Grobe.

About the Author

John Grobe is President of Federal Career Experts, a consulting firm that specializes in federal retirement and career transition issues. He is also affiliated with TSP Safety Net. John retired from federal service after 25 years of progressively more responsible human resources positions. He is the author of Understanding the Federal Retirement Systems and Career Transition: A Guide for Federal Employees, both published by the Federal Management Institute. Federal Career Experts provides pre-retirement seminars for a wide variety of federal agencies.

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  1. kevbo says:

    Oh yes let me be so grateful that you grandfather changes, please. My military pension and benefits is being hacked to death, it’s only a matter of time before my federal benefits/pay become fair game. The problem with America today is there is no loyalty, everyone is for theirselves. end of story

  2. hdog says:

    Also, I tried to find this information on the opm.gov website. The most recent documentation they have is from 1998!!!

  3. hdog says:

    I just started with the government last month, and this is the first I’ve heard of this change. The literature they sent me before I accepted said the deduction was 0.7%, so it must have been really old!

    This is pretty bad. The pay is bad enough already, but now they’re taking even more out of our paycheck, for pensions we may not even get (depending on Congress’ whim).

  4. Toni says:

    The increase for new employess in federal pension deductions is very significant — a 2.3 percentage point increase equates to 28.75 times the current .08%.

  5. Lithium says:

    How about this scenario:

    Employee is hired 1/20/2008
    Employee separates 2/2013
    Employee has more than 5 years of service, but
    By the 12/31 cut off, only has accumulated 4yrs 11months

    If the employee returns will their service count based on the total amount or where the were at by the 12/31 cutoff?

  6. Andrew Q says:

    This wasn’t an Obama-only policy. It was first sponsored by Representative David Camp (R-Michigan) and passed under bi-partisan support.

    http://www.govtrack.us/congres… 

  7. Ykbk says:

    You mentioned “Potentially Creditable Service”  i.e., service for which there are no funds currently in the FERS system, but for which… deposits can be made to FERS.  This includes FERS service for which…FERS deposits can be made …for temporary service before 1989”. Why the 1989 cutoff?  I heard there were proposals to allow deposits for post-1989 employees. What’s the status of such proposals?

  8. icanliejoe says:

    The biggest changers to FERS will happen in 2013 when a new congress is in session. FERS payments for all feds will increase to 5% with COLA’s for current retiree’s will be frozen until the $560B unfunded liability is made up. Right now the taxpayers are funding 95% of FRS and that won’t continue

  9. Itsjustmeagain1 says:

    There are 2 choices.
    A president who stumbled, expected the Congress to do their job and did not become engaged with negotiations and did not call out Boehner and McConnel early in their term when they said their primary objective is to make sure this is a one term President.  In doing so, they threw the economy (and us) under the bus.

    A contender who is critical of the president and uses the results of a Republican policy to sink the recovery brought to you by Bush.  (Yes I said Bush, he is the president to sent us down tis nose dive).  Someone whose policy and plans are unknown, written on an etch-a-sketch.  Who is this guy really and what does he really want from us?  His lies about working across the isle is a true indicator of his honesty, 400 veto’s and 300 overturned in Mass.  we can also discuss the lack of a moral compass when Bain Capital bought American Pad and Paper (AmPAD) for 15Million, loaded it up with $400Million in debt, charged $100Mil for “Debt Management” and walked away leaving the company bankrupt and investors with the dirty end of the stick.

    A prsident who has a track record you can see or a pig in a poke.

    Given a majority in the House and Senate will embolden Obama and get the slow turn around moving.

  10. Fedup says:

    What’s going to be different with the congress we have? Obama take the hit for the inadequacies of our procrastinating and narrow minded congress. I could careless about the parties do what’s best for America period.

  11. scott_a_harris7x says:

    A federal worker who votes for a republicon is like a chicken that votes for Colonel Sanders.

    • Hank says:

      a federal worker that votes for mittons is like a martyr that would cut his own throat.  mittons has proposed a 10 to 20% pay cut for federal employees, higher pension contritbutions and reducing the number of federal employees.   and you think that Mittons could not change the current FERS system, better wake up Scott.  Mittons takes his 10 to 14 percent tax rate – the supposed job creaters, and invests in other contries.   He talks about cutting taxes even further to stimult the economy – who’s Switzerlands, the Caymen Islands.  You go ahead and vote for mittons, and when he flushs you down the drain, don’t be calling for help.   

      • scott_a_harris7x says:

        Read that again Hank! I voted for Obama today by good old US Mail. So did 100 % of the postal workers. The chickens (cocks) are the republicons!!!!

      • little taxpayer says:

        Got news for you Hank.  Obama and Congress have already proposed higher pension contributions and reducing the number of federal employees.  I missed Romney’s proposed 10 to 20% pay cut, but I know Obama has already cut my pay by freezing pay for three years and letting inflation erode it’s value.  I’m sure you’re aware that Obama and most federal employees also invest in other countries. Do some research on capital gains.  Don’t continue to be economically illiterate.

  12. Guest says:

    Comments talk about Mitt.  Don’t forget about his running mate Paul Ryan.  He would be (and is) disastrous for Federal employee benefits and pay.

  13. Guest2 says:

    Question about returning to federal service after a break.  I was hired in October 2008.  As of 12/31/2012, I only have 4 years and 3 months of creditable FERS service.  If I leave the federal goverment on say 12/31/2013 (with 5 years and 3 months of creditable FERS service), then return some time in the future, what FERS rate do I pay as a rehired employee — 0.8% or 3.1%?

    • Guest says:

      If you are a federal employee ON 12/31/2012 and are performing civilian service that is creditable or potentially creditable under FERS, you are exempt from the FERS-RAE provisions.  Later reinstatements would be under FERS (.8%), not FERS-RAE (3.1%).

    • Jackgluteus says:

      You would be FERS- RAE if you  ever left and came back- you need 5 years service as of 12/31/12 to come back as FERS…and unfortunately for you don’t qualify. If you never leave, then you remain FERS.

      • Guest says:

        I beg to differ, Jackgluteus.  The BAL says:  “An individual will be excluded from FERS-RAE coverage if any of these exceptions apply:  1. the individual on December 31, 2012, was covered under FERS; OR 2. …”If Guest2 is covered under FERS on 12/31/2012, then he’s assured of future FERS coverage because he’s excluded from FERS-RAE.  Only employees who are NOT in FERS-covered or creditable/potentially creditable employment on 12/31/2012 will have to meet the 5 year requirement to avoid being under FERS-RAE upon reinstatement. 

        If Guest2 is covered under FERS on 12/31/2012, then he’s assured of future FERS coverage because he’s excluded from FERS-RAE.  Only employees who are NOT in FERS-covered or creditable/potentially creditable employment on 12/31/2012 will have to meet the 5 year requirement to avoid being under FERS-RAE upon reinstatement. 

  14. BME says:

    I have a question about this system that I could not find an answer for in letter 12-104. I currently have 3.5 years of service as a federal employee. I have also purchased back my military service of 4 years. If I leave after 1/1/13 and then return will I be FERS or FERS-RAE?

    Thanks in advance

    • BobtheFed says:

      In theory you should be just fine since you total 7.5 years.  Of course check with HR.

    • Realseabee says:

       You should come back as FERS according to what I read. Best to check it out and get it in writing.

      ““Potentially creditable service” is service for which there are no funds
      currently in the FERS system, but for which redeposits or deposits can
      be made to FERS.  This includes FERS service for which the employee
      contributions have been withdrawn (aka “redeposit service”) and service
      for which FERS deposits can be made (aka “deposit service,” including
      Peace Corps and VISTA service, most Temporary service before 1989, and
      most active duty military service).”

    • Stevo says:

      If I read the article correctly, you would be considered FERS because you paid the money for your “credible service” and therefore have 7.5 years (which is more than the five year qualifier).  I didn’t refer to it as “Potentially Credible Service” because you already paid it.  See below for the part of the article that I am referencing:

       Be warned:  “New” employees include employees who are rehired with less than 5 years of creditable or potentially creditable FERS service as of 12/31/2012.  Employees with more than 5 years of creditable or potentially creditable service as of 12/31/2012 are exempt from the new FERS-RAE provisions and will remain under FERS at the old rates.   

    • Guest says:

      If you are a federal employee ON 12/31/2012 and are covered under FERS, you are exempt from the FERS-RAE provisions in future reinstatements. So as long as you stay through 12/31/2012, you’re OK.

      However, the article is in error with regard to military service counting as potentially creditable service. The 5 years of FERS service required to continue FERS (not FERS-RAE) coverage upon reinstatement (if you weren’t covered on 12/31/2012) must be CIVILIAN service.  Military service is indeed service for which a deposit can be made, but “potentially creditable service” includes only CIVILIAN service (or possibly military service performed while on leave from a civilian position).

  15. DC_Guy says:

    We are safe…FOR NOW! If Mittens gets his way we will have pay cuts in actual salary AND benefits including FERS.  People say the country is headed for bankruptcy but Obama is winding down the tremendously costly wars while Mittens is chomping at the bit to start new ones.  And his fantasy tax plan means a big hit to middle class families.  Romneybots can talk all they want about the great things that Mittens would do, but I don’t believe it for a minute.  Is Obama perfect? NO, but he is far better for this country than Mittens and his 1950’s policies could ever be.

    • Gcote says:

      RIGHT ON

    • sb says:

       Mitt is wanting to start wars?  And that is based on what? please provide facts.

      • scott_a_harris7x says:

        Iran

      • Sulphide says:

        Mitt is a chicken-hawk. He asked for and received 4 deferrals during Viet Nam. Now Muffin says her sons served the country by being missionaries. How does being a missionary for any church (don’t make it a Mormon thing) serve your country. Mit was a missionary in Paris. Was anybody shooting at him?

        • icanliejoe says:

          He visited chicago the same battle ground that barak served in. Only barak got the benefit of quota admissions his whole life while the other guy worked for his $$$

        • Common Sense says:

          If I remember correctly, missonaries serve the poor, the downtroden, those who cannot help themselves, those with no hope and they bring GOD to those without hope.  That is still a pretty important calling when up against the powers of evil…..ask Satan if he knows GOD?……He knows him and if you don’t know God, then you must know Satan, for he exists where God does not, and, gladly does he fill that space.

    • Yrrab24 says:

      We had more pay raises and higher pay during Republican presidencies than Demarcate—It’s a myth that Republicans are going cut salaries and make major cuts to current benefits. It’s simply not true and NEVER has been. 
      The Middle class has ALWAYS flourished under Republican’s & NEVER under a Demarcate.
      We are STILL benefiting from the BUSH tax cuts that if were such a bad idea how come Obama has continued them for his entire presidency? The Tax cuts end Jan 1st conveniently just after the election where YOUR taxes will increase 33% if allowed. The big LIE that has been promoted by the Democrat thieves is that these were tax cuts for the RICH !!!! That could not be further from the truth…I’m NOT rich !!!! My taxes will increase 33% when the BUSH tax cuts end and the other taxes kick in. So if you want to continue giving your money to incompetent Liers in Washington by all means continue to vote Democrat. I prefer to chose on my own who I give my money to thank you. 

    • icanliejoe says:

      barak’s budget will add another $5.6 TRILLION to the debt in 2013-2015 as per CBO. That isn’t going to happen and feds are going to start paying their fair share

    • LLBBUU says:

       Yes we are better with Obama in there. Another 4 years and another 6 Trillion in more debt. Give me a break. You need to wake up from your stupor.

    • Common Sense says:

      You are soooo wrong.  Your use of name calling classify’s your remarks negatively.  His results speak for themselves.  He has turned around more bankruptcies than Mr. O.  We, as americans should be thinking about our country, not ourselves.  Our country is in worse condition than Greece.  Wake up, sacrifices will have to be made if this country is to survive.  China owns us at the present….and is laughing all the way to the bank.  You cannot spend your way out of debt.

    • Shorttymer2013 says:

      Stop drinking that kool aid!

    • Lgpete53 says:

      You must be on drugs! Give me some of that wacky weed you guys smoke in DC. Obama will finish off this economy and degrade social security benefits I have already paid for. This stupid idiot Obama needs to be impeached and sent back to his Chicago ghetto so he can’t steal from all of the taxpayers who aren’t part of the 47% freeloaders looking for a handout. So you want to see taxes raised and see less take home in your check? Well tell me in a couple of years after Obama bankrupts this country how that works for you.

  16. steve5656546346 says:

    Peggy Noonan summarized it perfectly on 11/5/09.  Big spender Bush had been replaced by even bigger spender Obama.  Congress was using the economic crisis as an avenue for doubling down on pork barrel spending and crony capitalism. 

    ———————-

    We’re Governed by Callous Children, by Peggy Noonan

    Americans feel increasingly disheartened, and our leaders don’t even notice

    …And here is the second part of the story. While Americans feel increasingly disheartened, their leaders evince a mindless . . . one almost calls it optimism, but it is not that.

    It is a curious thing that those who feel most mistily affectionate toward America, and most protective toward it, are the most aware of its vulnerabilities, the most aware that it can be harmed. They don’t see it as all-powerful, impregnable, unharmable. The loving have a sense of its limits.

    When I see those in government, both locally and in Washington, spend and tax and come up each day with new ways to spend and tax—health care, cap and trade, etc.—I think: Why aren’t they worried about the impact of what they’re doing? Why do they think America is so strong it can take endless abuse?

    I think I know part of the answer. It is that they’ve never seen things go dark. They came of age during the great abundance, circa 1980-2008 (or 1950-2008, take your pick), and they don’t have the habit of worry. They talk about their “concerns”—they’re big on that word. But they’re not really concerned. They think America is the goose that lays the golden egg. Why not? She laid it in their laps. She laid it in grandpa’s lap.

    They don’t feel anxious, because they never had anything to be anxious about. They grew up in an America surrounded by phrases—“strongest nation in the world,” “indispensable nation,” “unipolar power,” “highest standard of living”—and are not bright enough, or serious enough, to imagine that they can damage that, hurt it, even fatally.

    We are governed at all levels by America’s luckiest children, sons and daughters of the abundance, and they call themselves optimists but they’re not optimists—they’re unimaginative. They don’t have faith, they’ve just never been foreclosed on. They are stupid and they are callous, and they don’t mind it when people become disheartened. They don’t even notice.

  17. guest says:

    IT Guy – Feds aren’t bankrupting the country.  They didn’t set the current retirement plans, and they didn’t come up with the computations that went into deciding to enact them – Congress did.  The same body that enacts all legislation.  So while its very chic at the moment to point fingers at an easy target that had nothing to do with and still has nothing to do with their compensation, its nothing more than window dressing.

  18. independent says:

    I have not received a COLA in several years yet my expenses continue to increase. Last time I looked, the congress was split and the Demms controlled the white house. How’s that budget coming along

    Hard to blame Mitt as he is not in office.

  19. Fed worker bee says:

    It doesn’t matter who is elected in November … federal employees are going to take it on the chin in coming years simply because we are a convenient – and popular – target for cost savings.  The political price associated with extracting savings from of the federal workforce is much lower than the political price associated with cutting or eliminating programs.

  20. Air13148 says:

    I have a question, and it’s as non-partisan as I can be; if the GOP gains both houses of Congress and CEO Mitt is elected president, how much “grandfathering” do you think there will be?  If you work for the Feds, put your “hate” for Obama aside, and think before you vote. 

    • IT GUY II says:

      Vote Obama and not Mitt is not partisan?  I do agree with put your “hate” aside and think before you vote.  Think about how much feds will make when the country is completely bankrupt.  Think about future generations. 

    • Mark Butler2 says:

      So what was non-partisan about that again?

    • steve5656546346 says:

      It has been claimed that there is a structural flaw in democracy:  the people can vote themselves endless benefits–but they cannot successfully vote to repeal reality.

      About 70% of Americans get more from the Federal government than they pay in:  does that give you a hint as to where this is all going?  Bankruptcy.

    • Cropqueen6 says:

      Did you READ this??  NEW EMPLOYEES.  No need to discuss grandgathering….

      • OldRet says:

        Law can be changed at any time requiring current employees to pay more.

        • formerIRS says:

          In fact, there are currently several proposals to do just that. Some propose to raise it to the same 3.1%, phased in over 3 years, others to raise it to 5%, and include raising it for CSRS as well.  They are being intensly fought against by the unions and by NARFE, (National AQctive and Retired Federal Employees Association, but they could go through either in the lame duck session, or in the next congress. The propoals will die with the adjournment of this congress, but the ideas never die. They always have a way of rearing their ugly head again and again.

    • John2hop says:

      You are still considering voting for Obama? We can’t handle 4 more years of his style non-leadership and massive debt. Being as non-partisan as I can be; He is ruining America. What reason do you give for thinking Romney will not allow this grandfathering. What you will see is Federal employment reductions but based largely on an attrition basis.

      • Joe says:

        You can’t handle 4 more years of Obama but you will follow Mitt the twit and his line ob BS. I will say it is safer to follow Mitt and his sons into battle. Worst that can happen is someone throws a bobble at you. But ask yourself this: if he has the 12,000,000 he was boasting about for the last 8 months why are people on both sides in HIS state unemployed? Are they only available after he takes office if he did? Wake up. I don’t agree with everything Obama did but I don’t agree with everything my wife did. I don’t want to start over. I want to retire.

    • Jackie says:

      You must really have a dislike for the American way.  Hate for Obama has nothing to do with it.  It is hate for his policies and his socialist ways is fueling  the vote against Obama.  We gave him four years and he has done nothing.  Why would we give him another chance?

      • whatcongress says:

        done nothing? wow. you must be glued to fixnews which is no news. check the facts. fox doesnt know what facts are and neither does the gop in most cases. what astonishes me is that the american public is so blind deaf and dumb when it comes to history. all you have to do is see that the trickle down theory that started with reagan has been an abysmal failure and deregulation merely creates an open playing field for the greediest to go down any path they like to get theirs and the heck with everybody else. Give me socialism like Canadian or EU health care anytime. Obama’s biggest mistakes have been trying to compromise with the gop. but hey, i dont expect any of you to believe me. facts and history are not your strong point. Jut wish i was closer to retirement so i could get out before its all ruined if mitt gets elected.

    • Guest says:

      Think about your children’s future first! They are already targeted to pay obummers moochers $1,000’s for years to come.

    • Dhacker56 says:

       One does not have to hate Obama to disagree with his policies.  what is it with you liberals?  If someone expresses a negative opinion of the policies they hate Obama or they are racists!  Get a life!

      • Retiredwannabe3 says:

        Yeah, policies like 1) telling veterans and active military that if they were patriotic that they would pay their own medical premiums..it’s a voluntary military..nobody forced them to fight our wars..he’s got his nerve, doesn’t he..what a socialist! And..2) Obama goes on TV and says he won’t increase taxes on the middle class! He already did the damage..buried in Obama care was this little known provision that moved the health care premiums of self-employed(small businesses) individuals to the front of the form 1040(as an adjustment to income), rather than a deduction on schedule C(sole proprietor), which results in additional self-employment tax of 15.3%..and with the average premiums for a family of four running $20,000, that’s additional tax of $3,000/yr. How could anybody who has served/serves in the military or any small business individual even consider voting for Obama? Tax and spend, tax and spend..should be his campaign slogan!

  21. A7492097 says:

    Let’s hope the grandfathering continues.

    • Guest says:

      I high doubt that Mitt would grandfather anything to do with Federal employees…if he gets in watch out!!!

      • steve5656546346 says:

        Yes, any move to save us from total bankruptcy is to be regarded with total suspicion!

        It’s better to take it all the way in to total ruin–don’t you think?

        • Retired CSRS says:

          Obama is far from perfect, and I wish he had got the foolish tax cuts repealed (priority number one for the nation, to avoid bancruptcy)  instead of wasting so much political capital on getting the health care reform bill based.

          I am a retired CSRS annuitant, so I have been getting (small) raises while the active workers have been (and continue to be) frozen.  I fell sorry for those who are caught in the middle, as the whipping boy for those selfish rich people who only want more, more, more.

          The billionaires are doing quite well, and have countless millions to spend on PAC advertisements!

          • guest3 says:

             so the only rich — who are selfish, wanting more, more, more, and have countless millions to spend on PAC ads — are the  republican rich?

          • skisok says:

            The rich you refer to are not willing to ante up.

          • sb says:

             the rich pay 80% of all income taxes into the govt. coffers.  Tax them 100% and it will pay for less than two weeks of govt. expenditures.  The problem is spending, not taxes — and envy of the rich who pay your way.

          • Sulphide says:

            Mitt paid 14% . No one paid 80%.  

          • Youngfed says:

            What???? Yes Warren Buffet has a lot to spend on Obama and liberal bias/advertisements but why does that matter?  I can think for myself and so can most of the voting public to determine the better choice for President.  I don’t envy the rich nor do I resent them despite the constant pressure from the media this past year to vilify them.  Partisanship and division aside, we need a competent leader and manager to unify and inspire this great nation once again. 

            Some folks may feel that what we have seen these last four years is terrific.  Others can’t wait for someone else to demonstrate a different vision of leadership.  You sound happy with your annuity security blanket but do you wonder if the same opportunites for success and security will exist for your grand children if we continue to spend the way we have been?  Is it sustainable to just tax people more to keep up with the spending?  Would you support spending hundreds of millions of dollars on green energy jobs in foriegn countries to further political agendas instead of using that money in our own country for something like improving our education system or achieving energy independance? 

            CSRS sounds like it worked great for your generation and my generation is going to be fine with FERS; however, what are we leaving for the next generation besides debt and division?  The people (rich and poor Americans) will make their decision on November 6th with these long term considerations in mind. 

          • sb says:

             well said

          • formerIRS says:

            And don’t forget, that the situation was reversed in the first 2 years of the O’Bummer administration. Retirees, like you and me,  got zilch while active employees got rasises.  

        • skisok says:

          I think the Rich should have to sacrifice.  They were the benefactors of the tax cuts that led to this catastrophe and continue to be until the tax cuts are reversed.  Likewise the war in Iraq contributed to this catastrophe.  Let the military industrial complex pay back some of the trillions they ran off with.  Why should the middle class once again be stuck holding the bill.

          • sb says:

             the rich already pay 80% of the income tax revenues to govt.  The govt. pees away a trillion plus more. The problem is not taxes, but spending.  Taxing 100% of the income of the rich will only pay for 2-3 weeks of govt. expenditures.  Get off the gravy train, and learn some math

          • Truespender says:

            If what you say is correct (Romney said rich pay 60% of the tax revenue; however they have a much higher % of the wealth), when you say the rich pay 80% of the tax revenue, but even if they paid 100% it will only run our government for 2 to 3 weeks? If this is true we don’t have enough tax revenue to pay for these tax cuts. There will never be enough money to pay for government programs and salaries. The private sector wants the critical programs but doesn’t want to pay tax revenue to pay for them. Many states criticized the stimulus yet took stimulus money. Programs to keep interest rates low and refi homes are criticized, yet were used by many to prevent foreclosure of their homes. There are federal employees who haven’t paid their taxes. IRS reported that trillions, yes trillions of tax revenue is lost in offshore accounts used to avoid U.S. taxes. Small businesses apply for government loans, but still don’t hire, they downsize. People were and maybe continue to collect unemployment benefits, yet are not looking for work. I personally know somebody who collected it for the whole two years plus, and used the money to go on vacations. Some people collected benefits even after they ran out due to

          • Hank says:

            Maybe you should learn the math, cuts to spending in and of themselves will not solve the debt.  Where do you get your 80% figures from, tell what percent of the income and wealth do the “Rich” have.  Over the last 10 to 12 years with the bush tax cuts the rich have gotton a lot richer, while the middle class has stagnated or gotten worst.  And mittons thinks we should cut the taxes of the rich even further.  If the bush tax cuts were to be such a great stimulas to the economy and the country why did we end in in the worst recession during his last year in office since the great depression?  Because trickal down does not work.    Give a $100,000.00 tax cut to a rich person and they will send it to Switzerland.  Give $1,000.00 tax cuts to a 1,000 middle class individuals, and most likly it will probably end up in consumer goods, stimulating the economey, go figure? 

          • LogicMinded says:

            Amen to that!

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