According to the Washington Post, President Obama will propose a 1% pay increase for federal employees and members of the military in his budget proposal that is expected to be released next week.
The 1% proposal matches what the president proposed in his budget blueprint last year. Under the terms of the agreement that ended the shutdown, federal employees did ultimately get a 1% pay raise in 2014. For more information, see Agreement to End Shutdown Allows for 1% Pay Raise and Pay Freeze Likely to be Ending in January.
Federal employee unions were quick to decry the proposed increase. J. David Cox, president of the American Federation of Government Employees said, “Federal employees deserve a meaningful pay raise, not a token increase that will be more than eaten up by rising living costs, including higher retirement and healthcare costs.”
Others were more optimistic, however. Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) said in a statement, “I’m pleased that President Obama has proposed a COLA for federal employees in 2015. This modest COLA would go a long way in further recognizing the value of federal employees and help bring to a close years of pay freezes.”
Speaking on the pay increase, a White House official told Politico, “It (the pay raise) reflects the tight budget constraints we continue to face, while also recognizing the critical role these civilian employees play in our country – doing everything from assuring the safety of our food and airways, to securing our borders, to providing health care to veterans, to searching for cures to diseases. It also recognizes the sacrifices they have already made through prior pay freezes, reductions in awards, and furloughs due to sequestration last year.”