Trump cancels planned January pay increase for civilian federal workers


President Donald Trump said Thursday that civilian employees of the federal government will not receive raises in 2019.

In the letter, sent to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R., Wis.), Trump said the government could not sustain the scheduled increases.

Trump said he was nixing a 2.1 percent across-the-board raise for most workers as well as separate locality pay increases averaging 25.7 percent. Gerald E. Connolly, who said Trump was "feeling cornered and lashing out by cancelling a modest, planned pay increase for our dedicated federal workforce".

Trump is not anxious about the effect of freezing federal pay on the government's ability to be successful in "recruiting, retaining and rewarding high-performing Federal employees and those with critical skill sets". However, in the budget plan he released earlier this year, setting spending priorities for the coming year, Trump indicated he would seek a freeze on federal pay. It's not clear if Trump would approve a budget that includes the pay increase; the White House has not issued a formal veto threat of the Senate's bill. Trump frequently trumpets the military pay raise while listing his administration's accomplishments.

Some members of Congress - both Democrats and Republicans - opposed Trump's announcement.

In a notice to Congress Thursday, Trump cited "serious economic conditions" in cutting pay to civilian workers.

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Specifically, I have determined that for 2019, both across the board pay increases and locality pay increases will be set at zero.

"As noted in my budget for fiscal year 2019, the cost of employing the federal workforce is significant", he wrote. In light of our Nation's fiscal situation, Federal employee pay must be performance-based, and aligned strategically toward recruiting, retaining, and rewarding high-performing Federal employees and those with critical skill sets. A judge struck down most of those provisions last week.

The Democratic National Committee described Trump's letter as "yet another slap in the face to American workers" by the president, while Sen.

In contrast to civilian employees, troops are due for a 2.6 percent pay increase next year. Ben Cardin, D-Maryland, in a statement.

For 2019, the administration is projecting the deficit will top $1 trillion and stay above that level for the next three years. "I can think of nothing more hypocritical or disingenuous than to turn around and throw hardworking federal employees under the bus on the pretext of fiscal responsibility".