Trump cancels federal employee pay increases, citing financial concerns

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Trump cancels federal employee pay increases, citing financial concerns

President Donald Trump on Thursday announced plans to cancel a scheduled pay raise for civilian federal workers, saying the nation's budget could not sustain the increases.

"We must maintain efforts to put our Nation on a fiscally sustainable course, and Federal agency budgets can not sustain such increases", the President wrote. The budget deficit adds up to $684 billion though the first 10 months of the 2018 fiscal year, up 21 percent from the same point last year, MarketWatch reports.

30 that he will invoke his emergency authority to freeze pay for civilian federal workers next year, citing strained federal budgets and the need to link workers' pay to their performance.

In a notice to Congress Thursday, Trump cited "serious economic conditions" in cutting pay to civilian workers. Trump frequently trumpets the military pay raise while listing his administration's accomplishments.

Last year, Trump approved a 1.4 percent pay raise for federal employees. "We must maintain efforts to put our Nation on a fiscally sustainable course, and Federal agency budgets can not sustain such increases".

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

"President Trump's plan to freeze wages for these patriotic workers next year ignores the fact that they are worse off today financially than they were at the start of the decade", said J. David Cox Sr., president of the American Federation of Government Employees, which represents some 700,000 federal workers.

Congress can override the president's pay freeze through legislation.

President Trump's decision to deny pay raises is a slap in the face to the hardworking civil servants who help keep us safe, care for our veterans, and faithfully serve the American people. Federal workers have been hit with the negative news while troops are experiencing the opposite since they will get a 2.6 per cent increase next year. In addition, a yearly adjustment of paychecks based on the region of the country where a worker is posted - the "locality pay increase" - was due to take effect.

The White House 2019 budget plan released in February was the latest attempt to tie federal workers' pay to performance evaluations.

Trump said the pay freeze "will not materially affect our ability to attract and retain a well-qualified Federal workforce".

"As noted in my budget for fiscal year 2019, the cost of employing the federal workforce is significant", he wrote. States Trump won in 2016 - including Florida, Pennsylvania and OH - also rank high on the list of states where federal employees work.

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