Pay, Charity and Natural Disasters

The controversy over the 2006 federal pay raise has generated comments from a number of readers. Will the controversy have any impact on your donation this year?

It is time for the annual Combined Federal Campaign (CFC). Federal employees often give generously to the charities in the CFC and this year may not be any different.

But a number of comments sent in to late last week caught our attention. The coments were submitted in response to an article on the 2006 federal pay increase. A number of the comments brought up the subject of the Combined Federal Campaign even though that had not been mentioned in the article.

A technician from DCMA wrote: “I haven’t turned in my CFC yet and don’t believe I will. I may need the extra money to pay my heating bill this winter. But thats okay. I live in a cold climate and expect this extra expense, just as anyone living in hurricane alley should be prepared for the bad weather they know sooner or later will happen in their area.”

A computer specialist from the FAA said: “Actually, this shouldn’t be called a Pay Freeze. A more appropriate name would be Pay Reduction because we all know that health premiums will rise in 2006; most of us probably just increased our CFC donations because of the hurricanes (I did!); and prices for everything have gone up due to the hurricanes. For God’s sake, we’re already sacrificing.”

A Navy employee had a stronger opinion: “As a DoD employee, I find it to be a slap in the face when we get a lower raise than our military counterparts. Are we not part of the War on Terror? Well CFC and other charities can kiss my donation good-bye. The charities can just thank the federal government for their loss.”

A human resources specialist from the VA commented: “Federal employees can give their entire 2006 pay raise to CFC if they so desire. However, if the pay raise is offset or diminished in order to pay for Federal deficits (based on hurricane relief, employees may wish to cut their CFC donation, because it will, in essence, be going to the same thing. The logic may be flawed, but why should Federal employees bear the brunt of hurricane relief? Everyone gives what they can or choose.”

And an analyst from the Department of Defense wrote: “I hope people will give, either through CFC or on their own, to those organizations and federations that have not been accused and that do keep only a small percentage for themselves.”

With this number of unsolicited comments showing up on the subject, it is obviously of interest to readers. So here is your chance to weigh in.

About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources. Follow Ralph on Twitter: @RalphSmith47