Members of Congress Pay Out Over $6 Million in Staff Bonuses while Supporting Pay and Benefit Reductions for Federal WorkersTuesday, July 5, 2011
(National Federation of Federal Employees)
In a political climate where Washington politicians are clamoring to cut federal pay, benefits, and retirement security, the hypocrisy that follows is truly something to behold.
According to a CNN investigation on Congressional compensation, more than six million dollars in bonuses were paid out to House staff between January and March of this year. Ranging from less than one hundred dollars to as high as $17,000, the bonuses were distributed by members of both parties as well as committees.
House Federal Workforce Subcommittee Chairman Dennis Ross (R-FL) – who in the past has called several hearings on reducing federal employee pay and staffing levels – shelled out nearly $9,000 in bonuses to his staff thus far this year. As recently as last week, Ross penned an op-ed piece for Roll Call urging his colleagues to cut 200,000 federal jobs and extend the federal pay freeze through 2015. By this line of reasoning, the only federal employees in government that deserve a raise this year are those that work for him.
“How can these lawmakers keep a straight face when one moment they’re calling federal pay bloated, and then the next they’re doling out thousands of dollars in bonuses to their staff?” said NFFE National President William R. Dougan. “Don't get me wrong, these staffers are seriously underpaid. But to claim that all other federal workers are not equally deserving of fair compensation is just downright hypocritical.”