Federal Workforce Reduction



Numerous pieces of legislation have been introduced in the 112th Congress to arbitrarily and dangerously reduce staffing at federal agencies.  NFFE-IAM strongly opposes these short-sighted proposals that will make it extremely difficult for federal agencies to carry out their missions, such as caring for our veterans, protecting our homeland security, guarding our borders, inspecting our food supply, and maintaining our national defense.



There are numerous pieces of legislation introduced in the 112th Congress designed to arbitrarily and dangerously reduce staffing at federal agencies.  Here are several examples of bills that attack federal workers’ pay that NFFE-IAM strongly opposes:


H.R. 3029 (Mulvaney, R-SC) – would direct agencies to hire no more than one employee for every three who retire or leave government service until the end of FY 2014. 


S. 2065 (Kyl, R-AZ) – would arbitrarily reduce the federal workforce by 5% and extend the federal pay freeze until June 30, 2014. 


H.R. 3662 (McKeon, R-CA) – would prohibit agencies from hiring more than 1 employee for every 3 who leave until the total workforce drops by 10%. 


S. 1476 (Hatch, R-UT) – would reduce the federal workforce by 15 % over the next 10 years and extend the current pay freeze on federal employees for 3 more years. 


S. 1611 (Johnson, R-WI) – seeks to slash the size of the federal workforce by 10 percent by 2015.


H.R. 657 (Lummis, R-WY) – would impose a hiring freeze at all non-security federal agencies.   


H.R. 1779 (Marino, R-PA) – would institute a federal hiring freeze. 


H.R. 2114 (Issa, R-CA) – seeks to slash the federal workforce by 10% by 2015. 


H.R. 3487 (Buchanan, R-FL) – would reduce the federal workforce by 10% by 2015.  


H.R. 235 (Brady, R-TX) – would direct each federal agency head to reduce the number of full time federal employees by 10% by Fiscal Year 2020.  In addition, the bill would freeze the amount of money federal agencies could spend on salaries at Fiscal Year 2010 levels through Fiscal Year 2013. 

H.R. 3494 (Heck, R-NV) – would require that the total number of federal employees be reduced to the number of employees as of October 1, 2007.  The bill has been referred to multiple committees in the House. 


Despite false claims that the federal workforce is greatly expanding, there were in fact more civilian federal employees in 1967 than there are today. This is true despite significant population growth and an increased mandate on federal agencies.  Nonetheless, several proposals have been put forth in the 112th Congress to force federal workforce reductions. 


Drastic cuts to the federal workforce through attrition and hiring caps appear to be more about politics than good human resource management. According to OPM, 40% of all federal workers will be eligible to retire within the next 10 years. The United States cannot afford to lose talented and experienced employees during this critical transition which has been described as “a human capital crisis.” Federal agencies must be able to attract and retain an adequate workforce to handle the demands placed upon government, which have increased over time.


Implementing these misguided proposals is reckless and will cause federal agencies, many of which are already understaffed, to endure a personnel crisis. This crisis would greatly limit the federal government’s effectiveness and reduce critical services on which the American people rely. NFFE-IAM strongly opposes proposals to arbitrarily slash the size of the federal workforce or freeze federal hiring.


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