WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump has made a point, on the campaign trail and in the White House, to say he wants to cut spending and limit the size of the federal government. But his administration still plans on giving federal employees a raise, according to The Washington Post.
Citing a senior budget official, the Post reports the Trump administration will recommend a 1.9 percent raise for federal workers that would be scheduled to take effect in January.
“It is in line with what usually federal employees would have seen as their raise,” said Eric White of Federal News Radio, WTOP’s sister station.
The potential raise was not included in the Trump administration’s proposed budget that was released last week. However, the newspaper reports federal agencies have been told by the White House to build the raise into their spending plans for the fiscal year that starts in October.
Major federal employee unions, such as the American Federation of Government Employees, have been critical of the 1.9 percent figure. They said it should be larger, considering the billions in cuts to federal worker pay and benefits that have occurred since 2010.
“They cite numbers quoting that private sector wage growth has been substantially higher than what many public sector employees have been seeing,” White said. “They make the argument that federal employees are facing the same kind of struggles that a lot of middle-class families are facing.”
A more detailed version of Trump’s budget proposal is scheduled to be released in the coming weeks.
The current version, considered to be a budget “blueprint,” includes deep cuts across much of the federal government.
“It’s just weird to be talking about federal pay raises when the blueprint that the administration released brought forth severe and drastic cuts to a lot of agencies,” said White.
The blueprint would boost military spending by $54 billion while domestic programs and foreign aid would, as a whole, absorb a 10-percent, $54-billion cut from currently projected levels — cuts that would match the military increase.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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