Thursday May 23rd, 2013 • Posted by Craig Eyermann
Lindsay Wise of the McClatchy News Service reports:
An elite group of federal employees is set to receive cash bonuses despite this year’s automatic budget cuts, according to a report that a Senate subcommittee issued Friday.
The report revealed that members of the government’s highly paid Senior Executive Service _ who make up less than 1 percent of the federal workforce _ had received more than $340 million in bonuses from 2008 through 2011. The bonuses came on top of annual salaries that ranged from $119,000 to $179,000.Doing some back of the envelope math, the Senior Executive Service’s bonus program for high-level federal bureaucrats pays out approximately $113 million in bonuses each year.
With 2.15 million civilian employees on its regular payroll, the one percent (21,500) that are employed as part of the Senior Executive Service have been collecting bonuses of roughly $5,271 per high-level federal bureaucrat per year.
Now consider the context in which they are collecting that bonus this year. Since the federal budget sequester took effect at the end of March 2013, we’ve observed federal government bureaucrats in the Senior Executive Service pretty much doing everything they can to make ordinary Americans pay the price for reducing federal spending by such a small percentage (the sequester budget cuts total $85 billion, or 2.2% out of projected federal spending total of $3,803 billion for the current year.) Here, faced with having to trim their spending, top-level bureaucrats at various federal government agencies have:
- Threatened to keep meat from reaching U.S. supermarkets by furloughing low-level federal food safety inspectors.
- Threatened to create flight delays by furloughing low-level air traffic controllers.
- Threatened to jam up airport security lines by furloughing low-level TSA agents.
- Threatened to cut the pay of low-level janitors at the U.S. Capitol.
- Threatened to hand out pink slips to teachers.
Here’s an easy solution for this situation. By eliminating the $113 million in bonuses to be paid out to the 21,500 member Senior Executive Service of the U.S. federal government this year, the federal government can recover 1.3% of the total of $85 billion that would otherwise have been cut elsewhere as part of the budget sequester, such as the spending that these same individuals were intending to cut for the express purpose of increasing the amount of inconvience in the lives of 313 million Americans.
Unless the top 1% of federal bureaucrats have a good reason why they would refuse to minimize the impact of such a minor federal government spending cut to ordinary Americans.
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