WASHINGTON – Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) released the following statement today applauding the passage of the Fiscal Year 2005 Transportation, Treasury Appropriations Bill which provides for parity in the 2005 pay adjustments for both military and civilian federal employees:
“Federal employees are one step closer to receiving a fair pay adjustment in 2005 as a result of the House passage of the 2005 Transportation, Treasury Appropriations Bill, which provides for parity between military and civilian federal employee pay adjustments.
“I was very pleased that the President proposed a fair pay adjustment for our deserving troops. But it is important that we also support the 1.8 million federal employees with a fair pay adjustment. Many civilian federal employees, such as CIA agents, Federal Air Marshals, and Department of Defense civilian employees, work side-by-side with the military to protect our nation at home and abroad from terrorism and other threats.
“Pay parity is a long-standing bipartisan principle that ensures that both civilian federal employees and the military receive fair pay adjustments every year and I am pleased that Congress has decided to once again support it.
“Unfortunately, the President and many Republicans continually fail to recognize the vital role these hard working men and women people play in protecting and advancing our nation’s interests.”
There are 1.8 million civilian federal employees across the country - in the Department of Defense alone there are 669,000 civilian federal employees. Over the past two decades, both the House and Senate have consistently recognized in the past that we should not undermine the morale of dedicated Federal public servants by failing to bring their pay adjustments in line with military personnel.
The principle of parity stems from the recognition that the pay for civilian and military employees simply has not kept pace with increases in the private sector. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a 33-percent pay gap exists between the civilian employees and their private sector counterparts and an estimated 10-percent gap exists between the military service members and the private sector.