Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA) has introduced legislation that would ensure that the percentage increase in rates of basic pay for Wage Grade (WG), or hourly, employees is equivalent to the percentage increase received by other federal employees in the same pay locality.
According to a statement from Cartwright’s office, the President was able to provide a 1% COLA for General Schedule (GS), or salaried, federal employees this year, however, he does not have the statutory authority to provide the same COLA to all federal workers. Beginning January 1, 2014, WG employee’s wages will stay the same or even decrease thus creating a greater disparity between the wages of WG employees and GS employees.
Cartwright thinks this is wrong. “The inconsistency in wages between WG and GS employees is inequitable. It hurts a group of Americans that can least afford a fourth year with no increase at all. For this reason, I am proud to introduce this legislation which would benefit a group that has been particularly impacted by a four year pay freeze, the recent Defense furloughs and the government shutdown.”
The Support the Wage Grade Employee Parity Act as the bill is known (H.R. 3573), is similar in nature to legislation that Cartwright introduced back in June that, to date, has not advanced in the House.