Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.) is no fan of Trump administration, but the president's decision today (Thursday) to stop pay raises for civilian federal employees is hitting a particular nerve for Arlington's local congressman.
"I have determined that for 2019, both across the board pay increases and locality pay increases will be set at zero", Donald wrote in a letter addressed to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan.
Federal workers were to get a 2.1 percent across-the-board raise in January, with more for those who live in high-cost areas. Trump signed executive orders in May that made it easier to fire federal employees and placed limits on public-sector unions. Officials did not immediately say whether the pay freeze would also apply to White House staffers.
30 that to save taxpayers money pay increases for federal employees will not go into effect as they were slated to in January 2019.
Scrapping the raises will save more than $25 billion, Trump said.
Washington has 75,525 people working for the federal government as of mid-2017, according to Governing. Trump has touted the military pay bump, which was authorized by a giant $716 billion defense bill he signed earlier this month.
Trump did not appear to be concerned that civilian government agencies would struggle to retain workers.
"His tax bill exploded the deficit, and now he is trying to balance the budget on the backs of federal workers", the Virginia Democrat said.
The Senate has approved a 1.9 percent pay hike as part of a spending bill for federal agencies, while the House included no raise.
"Federal employees deserve the full measure of pay comparability provided by the law, and a 1.9 percent increase is the minimum that Congress should consider", he said. Barack Obama, Trump's predecessor, froze raises for civilian employees for three consecutive years during his two terms as president from 2011 through 2013.
No one will believe his dishonest justification of a 'national emergency or serious economic conditions, ' which is contradicted by Trump's own commentary painting a rosy picture of the economy.
"Trump has delivered yet another slap in the face to American workers", said Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez.
"As noted in my budget for fiscal year 2019, the cost of employing the federal workforce is significant", he wrote.
The Trump administration has previously proposed cutting federal employee retirement benefits.