WASHINGTON – House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer released the following statement today regarding a report by the Office of Personnel Management on cash bonuses awarded to political appointees by the White House. Mr. Hoyer requested the report 8 months ago, on December 10, 2002. The report details, by agency, the number of political appointees who are eligible to receive cash award and the average salaries of those employees; a list, by agency, of the number of political appointees who received within -grade increases in 2002; and a list, by agency, of the numbers and amounts of cash awards granted to political appointees during that same period.
“I find it surprising and frustrating that it took 8 months for the Office of Personnel Management to supply this information. While I have no opposition to awarding bonuses for outstanding performance, the White House’s decision to change personnel policy without notifying Congress and then taking an extraordinarily long time to provide information on the results of that policy is troubling. It is just another example of the Administration’s lack of regard for the legislative branch’s oversight responsibility.
“In addition, I find it disturbing that the Administration pursues a policy of rewarding political appointees with an average salary of $100,000 while at the same time refusing to support the bipartisan effort to provide federal employees, whose dedication and commitment are the reasons that the federal government serves the American people effectively, with a fair pay adjustment each year.
“I hope that the Administration will be more conscious of their obligations to fairly reward all members of the federal workforce.”
For 2002, the Administration awarded $1,440,123 in cash awards to 470 political appointees. The Departments of State and Education doled out the highest total cash awards with State providing a total of $257,500 to 23 appointees and Education providing total of $153,250 to 37 appointees. The political appointees in the Commodities Futures Trading Commission and the Department of State received the highest cash awards with average cash bonuses of $11,200 and $11,196 respectively. The Department of Housing and Urban Development had the highest number of appointees receiving cash awards, giving 44 appointees cash bonuses.
For full copies of the report please contact the Office of the Democratic Whip at 202-225-3130.