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View Diary: House votes to extend federal worker pay freeze (149 comments)

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  •  this made my wife retire (0+ / 0-)

    My wife just retired last year after 40 years at NASA. Your retirement is calculated on your last 3 years salary and I told her another year of the same salary would lower her retirement income.
    She retired and the irony is retirees get a COLA every year so her annuity went up a little bit this year.  Also another reason they did this i would guess is the majority of federal workers vote democratic.      

    •  Me too -- (0+ / 0-)

      After doing the math, I realized I had to get out at the end of 2011, I couldn't take another year of pay freeze.

      And I was one of the employees without a degree (ran out of money in college and did not want to take on debt). Plain garden variety administrative (i.e. clerical) employee.

      •  Hmmm. That means a hidden cost of this move would (4+ / 0-)

        be that an added burden will fall on the training budgets of all those departments, and since you can't allow untrained workers into the federal workforce, they'll have to take that money from the department budgets.  

        This is Grover Norquist making a down payment on a bigger bathtub.

        "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi // Question: "succeed" at what?

        by nailbender on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 07:18:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  What training budget? (5+ / 0-)

          I'm now trying to find a way to pay for a trip to drupalcon, a conference directly related to my work. We've already been told no training this year, and if lucky, we can make it without furloughs. I work in web dev, I could make more in private sector and get dental and free health care like my friends doing what I do for contractors, and the developers lunches and coffee and fully stocked fridges and all the other perks they get, I can bet I know what Christie would say to me!!!

          I always believed in serving my country, making the world a better place through my service, but I didn't sign up to be liked around, treated like dirt and paid like I don't matter. I signed up for this when being in service to the country meant something, today, it does feel like I'm being drowned in a bathtub. Great metaphor Grover, babe, just f-ing great!

          •  I bet that kind of thing doesn't show up on the (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            cpresley, worldlotus

            chart at the top of this diary.  IOW, your pay should be shown as diminished by the amount of self-funded professional training you have to fork out for.

            That's a talking point, in case any talkers are reading.

            "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi // Question: "succeed" at what?

            by nailbender on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 08:44:14 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Federal worker family here too... (4+ / 0-)

              Don't know about other agencies but the National Park Service has a strict travel ceiling which prevents a lot of training from happening. I know conference attendance, training attendance etc is barely existent.

              This extension of pay freeze takes a psychological toll not just a financial toll. We don't like being portrayed as the fat cat govt employees sacrificed to line some 1%ers pockets with a tax break.

              Federal workers are just that.....Workers, just like any other.  

          •  All that bitching becuase (1+ / 2-)
            Recommended by:
            Christin
            Hidden by:
            Ramoth, Cartoon Messiah

            you can't get all the info you need on Drupal from a website? You have to go to a conference with the paid for Hotels and Food and Transportation?

             You say all your friends have all these benefits and you don't? Why, pray tell me don't you just quit and join them if it's such a slam dunk?

            By the way...It's easy to cite benefits at at a FB or Google, but for the rest of the world a Drupal job is a contract only, Age specific, experience specific, multiple languages required, years of experience at commercial web sites,  no bennies and you have to be mobile just to get a temp job lasting 6-12 months.

             I work in that field too. So lets be straight up. You got it made in the shade and the proof of that is you are still working there. If what you said is true you would have been long gone.

        •  Training?! What's that?!! (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Chitownliberal7

          In my job, they threw you in the pool, and you'd better damned well be able to swim.

          Yearly, we had at least 2 hours of ethics training. When our agency finally got word processors, I actually had two days of training -- and the company came to our office to do it.

          When the office finally got computers, everyone in the office spent two days off site getting training. A decade or so later, they did the same thing when we upgraded to Windows XP.

          My supervisor taught me how to do payroll. HQ actually sent someone out to train every office when we got a software program for booking travel. When payroll was computerized I got to travel to our Regional Office for that training.*

          Of the agencies I worked for only Social Security actually trained people -- and the folk that were trained were the ones taking applications for the various flavors of Social Security claims. If you were in the typing pool = no training.

          *Baltimore forgot to check that the computers at RO could handshake with the training computer in Baltimore...oops. One full day of training completely shot to hell.

    •  No pension right? No health Benefits? (1+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Christin
      Hidden by:
      Ramoth

      when your wife retired after 40 years oh...wait a COLA on her pension. I'll assume she is about 62. Have you priced private insurance for a 62 year-old recently?

      You have no complaints. None.

      •  You missed the point - again. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        terrybuck, HM2Viking

        He never said she had no pension - you did.
        He never said she had no benefits - you did.
        And you said that just so you could pronounce judgment on something he never said in the first place.
        And all the time you had no clue as to what they were talking about. Whoa daddy.
        The comment was about what a mistake it was to pull a stupid move, just for show, like the Republicans did when they froze Federal employees pay. Get it?
        It's a stupid move because it has consequences like losing valuable employees that don't need to put up with crap like that.
        Would you care to address what they really said in their comment instead of pronouncing judgement on their personal situation?

        •  You must be the guy (1+ / 1-)
          Recommended by:
          dfarrah
          Hidden by:
          HM2Viking

          I faced off with at a Govt building who put his lunch break sign up just as I got to the window after an 3 hour wait in line with a bunch of criminals trying to get their cars back because he was too fucking lazy to make two lines. He came back two hours later.

          You don't seem to understand something crunchy.

          It;'s called "Public Service" Not "the Public Serves Us."
          We don't know if she was a valuable employee. We do know the Civil Service protects employees so well that a real honest to gawd incompetency firing is not heard of.

          A Job at NASA that has lasted 40 years that required the person quit to take a fixed pension at the highest possible level of pay where the person clearly has no discomfort at all, while others in the private sector, are forced to take early social security benefits at 62 for an average of $1100 per month is a big benefit for Federal workers that no one here working for the govt seems to understand is even a benefit. You act like it's a right that can't be taken away.

          What, she was planning on working 20 more years and she had to sacrifice? OMG. You mean you don't save any money?

          You see crunchy, one thing that isn't calculated in the joke of this diary or the responses is the fact that people that pay the taxes that allow her to have the choice of quitting with no discomfort,  have to save a lot of their salary now that their 401ks have been decimated, their home values have been decimated and they don't even know if they'll live long enough to collect social security. That means a ton of uncertainty and a whole lot of stress before they even get to what is called a job but used to be a paid internship. No living wages.

          Even the people that did save a lot of money and held on to it to supplement that social security that is getting cut, aren't getting any return. The old days of 5-7% in interest and leaving something for the kids are gone. It's over except for Federal Govt employees and the 1%.  Interest rates can't be raised otherwise your ass would be laid off because the govt would have to pay out everything it takes in to cover the interest bill.

          So why is God's name should people on Social Security be facing possible cuts, age extensions before benefits can be collected and cuts in Medicare while this guy is complaining that she won;'t get the highest three years of her salary if she doesn't quit. Did you understand that if people are working at 62 in the real world  , they don't have the choice of quitting? That they are most likely working at a job that pays less than they earned at high school?

          Those are the same people that paid for that persons benefits  their whole working lives. What I want to know is why Federal Employees pay is not being cut by 20-30%, why their pensions aren't being converted to 401ks  and why they aren't on the same health care plan we are. The one that costs $2000 a month with a $5000 deductible for health care benefits before age 65 that no one in the private sector can get at any price?

          Justify your existence crunchy. We have to do it everyday.  Don't even think about yelling at the people that pay your fucking salary either. You do that in the private sector and you don't exist anymore.

          •  Try the decafe (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ramoth, terrybuck
            So why is God's name should people on Social Security be facing possible cuts, age extensions before benefits can be collected and cuts in Medicare while this guy is complaining that she won;'t get the highest three years of her salary if she doesn't quit.
            The entire point of the diary is that the freeze on Federal workers wages is a political stunt that has negligible impact on the federal budget.
            Do you understand that?
            -------
            Did you understand that if people are working at 62 in the real world  , they don't have the choice of quitting? That they are most likely working at a job that pays less than they earned at high school?
            First - again not the point of the diary or the comments. Second - what's that based on? The bible according to Dborn?
            -----
            Justify your existence crunchy. We have to do it everyday.  Don't even think about yelling at the people that pay your fucking salary either. You do that in the private sector and you don't exist anymore.
            First, at this point in time, I don't work in the government.
            Second - I'm not yelling at anyone. I'm not using profanity either - like you are.
            You might want to reconsider you post.
            •  You must be on FIXED pension then (0+ / 0-)

              N/T

              •  Another comment divorced from reality (0+ / 0-)

                That's a weird form of argument or discussion. To ignore what the other person said, then project some situation or quality onto that person, and then use that fantasy quality or situation to argue against.
                I'm not on fixed pension.
                I'm not a prosecutor as you somehow fantasized on another post up this thread.

                Every one of those crooks should be in jail if you dicks had done your job.
                Whoa daddy!
                •  Try some substance Crunchy (0+ / 0-)

                  Then I'll address it. I understand the diary has been about a pay freeze. A pay freeze that comes after years of COLA to the point where the average Federal worker makes 2x the average private worker even with the top 1% factored in.

                  What is the point about making a diary with crappy statistics over a pay freeze in the most protected class of workers in the USA besides those in the top .01%.

                  Then looking at a diary trying to justify The implied  meme "Workers are getting screwed"  by comparing the pay to private sector stats where the sources have gone missing as to how the figures were arrived at.

                  Then in the comments; whining about pay freezes for workers who average twice the pay as the private sector as a whole and are protected against job loss to a degree not seen in any other worker class in the USA. It's   like Bankers arguing that their tax payer funded  bonuses weren't large enough after federal workers refused to go after them for crimes they committed .

                  •  time for you... (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Capt Crunch, terrybuck

                    to step away from the keyboard...

                  •  Your comments are straight out of Freep (0+ / 0-)

                    Federal employees are not overpaid.........Here is the data

                     http://www.opm.gov/...

                    The reality is that there is a 22% pay deficit for federal employees as compared to the private sector...

                    •  RE: Out of Freep (0+ / 0-)

                      Standard Kossack response when there is no plausible argument to be made; "Those are RW talking points".

                      Then Stats

                      Right out of a Govt report to buttress a non-argument.

                      Everywhere else: Federal Employees on average are paid 2x the amount of comparable work in the private sector.

                      Since the 1% have gotten 121% of all the gains since the recession started, that means only one thing. Pay has gone done for the private sector. Pay  has not gone down for the Govt workforce. Federal Employment has expanded from 1.79 Million employees to 2.15 Million employees. Benefits have not been cut for the federal workforce. If anything over-all pay has gone up when factoring in the huge increase in Health Care Costs the private sector employee has to pay out of pocket.

                      The only ones who think Federal Employees are not overpaid relative to the rest of the workers are Federal employees. Why am I not surprised.

                      •  Compare apples to apples (0+ / 0-)

                        If you factor pay according to education require to land the job then professionals are underpaid. Its not 2x the comparable pay in the private sector.

                        Federal employees (by law) cannot be paid more for comparable work than the private sector.  Bedmakers at the VA make about 9$ per hour on entry. A similar level employee at a private sector hospital is paid about the same.  I would argue that the problem isn't excessive compensation for the public sector it is undercompensation for comparable public sector employees. The salary data I posted was an acurate nuanced comparison on an apples to apples basis.

                        My wages are public information.  When I started at the VA as a new grad RN with a BSN I was hired at 58k/year. In Mn that is actually a middle class wage level for a family of four. As a seasoned nurse I am making what a comparable nurse in the private sector makes. (See AFGE 3669 for salary data for a nurse II step 2. Then compare it to the MNA pay scale for a seasoned  nurse. My wages are either at or slightly below. MNA nurses have higher salary differentials as compared to AFGE nurses.  See http://swz.salary.com/...

                        If you say that as an individual I make twice that of the average worker that is technically true only if you really want to totally discount the added value of a professional nursing degree. RN is not a "paper or plastic" career. Nursing has a very wide development path from CNP up to and including doctoral level education.

                        The entry level wage for a new grad family Psychiatric nurse practitioner at Mpls VAHCS is about 77k. Per salary.com the average for a specialty care NP in MPLS is 98k. Effectlively as  a new grad i will be underpaid by at least 10k per year. Admittedly I receive TSP match but that is deferred compensation similar to that offered by other MPLS healthcare employers. MNA nurses also receive tsp match and also have a DB pension.

                        •  Questions (0+ / 0-)

                          1. Why aren't you including your benefits package into your pay?

                          2. Are the benefits the same in the private sector and if they are why haven't you taken a job in the private sector.

                          You are in one of the very very few professions where demand far outweighs supply. As far as degrading your degree. You completely misunderstood. I don't degrade degrees or skills.  It is the private sector that has told millions their degrees are worthless.  From a undergrad to PHD degrees with JDs stuck in the middle  carrying on average $26000 in student loans just for a bachelors degree at a compounded rate of 7.9% in the federal program up from 6.8% in the private program.

                          At the Masters and the PHD level the student debt is mid 5 to 6 figures or more depending on what schools and programs they were in. A lower level Tier one law degree which is virtually worthless today is $60,000 just for tuition. That doesn't count books or living expenses. Since the loans compound, they have negative amortization by the time they graduate. It's the debt from hell that won't go away where people in the private sector find it's a matter of luck and who they know to even have a chance of  getting  a job where they have a chance at repaying it. Yet if you serve in the Govt, your loans are paid for after 10 years I believe.

                          Why not count that in?  

                          What is the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program?
                          In 2007, Congress created the Public Service Loan Forgiveness Program to encourage individuals to enter and continue to work full-time in public service jobs. Under this program, borrowers may qualify for forgiveness of the remaining balance due on their eligible federal student loans after they have made 120 payments on those loans under certain repayment plans while employed full time by certain public service employers.
                          Finally, the recent comparison only counts people that are working. It doesn't account for the people who are unemployed with degrees. Federal employees act as if there is not a wholesale change going on in the composition and compensation in the workforce. Maybe that's why turn-over is only half of what it is in the private sector even when people are holding on to jobs for dear life itself at any pay in the private sector unless they are in one of the few professions that have a supply demand  equation in their favor.

                          In the private sector, those that enjoy that status now will soon find that status gone as the private sector is eliminating high paying jobs at an astonishing rate to outsourcing to breaking down jobs to smaller parts and paying people less who perform them.

                          Academics are finding out the hard way they are not as immune as they once thought to the realities of an economy that is structurally broken.

                          •  You are reaching pretty deep to support your pt (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Capt Crunch

                            The public service loan forgiveness program only works for employees if they are at the very bottom of the pile. If you are married and both spouses have substantial loan debt there is no effective savings for a married couple. Ostensibly the program calls for a 15% of income payment plan. If both spouses have loans thats 15% EACH. In our case that would translate into a 30k/year payment between our personal eucational loans as well as those we took on for our children.

                            (The public service loan program is available for private sector health care workers and those who work for nonprofits in community service organizations.)

                            My benefits are worth about 30% of salary. That is what the private sector for Fortune 500 companies usually offer their employees.  Benefits for the VA are essentially the same as those offered to MNA nurses 4 miles down the road at HCMC.

                            For a variety of reasons I am not interested in changing jobs. I am a Navy veteran and when I went to nursing school I always wanted to care for veterans and work at a state of the art teaching hospital. It makes no sense to leave the organization that I have always wanted to work for as a professional. (There are more things to work than financial factors.) The vast majority of federal jobs are similar to mine. They are jobs that need to be done for the public interest with comparable pay and benefits to similar jobs in the private sector. After reading your posts I think your real beef is with the Senior Executive Service. (Those are the CEO's of the various departments and agencies.....) In effect you have taken your wrath at probably 2% of the federal workforce out on the 98% who are the worker bees.

                          •  You are incorrect (0+ / 0-)

                            What do they call it the "top two sheets", Instead read further. The program calls for 15% of your disposable income.  Not 15% of your pay. If you are paid well and there are no emergency or chronic expenses in the family, you are expected to make the payments that are authorized over the period of the load for 10 years or 120 payments. If you have financial difficulties it only calls for 15% of your disposable income.  A private citizen would have to do it for 25 years. You only have to do it for 10 years . A person who has disposable income would have to make the agreed payment for 25 years in the private sector. That is around $125,000 on average more than those in the public sector.

                            Am I Reaching?  No.
                            Uncovering more and more layers of BS, yes.

                            You have no reason to complain. You are not worth close to what you are being paid if the benefit packages were costed out to what the equivalent would be in the private sector. You are comparing straight up salaries and if you have been on this site long enough, you would know that Fixed Benefit Pensions, full Health insurance with low if any deductibles  to vacation time . through except for small portion of govt holidays are no longer available to tens of millions of Americans stuck in low paying jobs or are completely jobless regardless of academic qualifications.

                            Since most loans are going to 20-30 years and no one else  gets that kind of relief, that isn't what I would call reaching. That's what I would call complete and utter denial  that you are in a class of workers that are far better off then the ones that pay your wages and benefits. Look what your counterparts are doing over at the VA and then explain to me how Govt employees are superior to private sector employees.

                            Here is where govt employees and their managers should be able to put up an argument that they are special as no one in the private sector has to do what they do...except for the fact they are not only not doing their jobs, they are hurting people that really embraced public service instead of "The public serves Us", and put their lives on the line.  

                            What is seen is a screwed up system where veterans have to sue the VA to get their benefits. Moreover, if the die while waiting years for their benefits, their heirs get nothing. Nadda . Zilch. Not even a life insurance policy paid for by the govt since getting one on their own would be near impossible.  There are no whistleblower. No one comes forward and talks about claim adjudicators who never delve to deep into a case file before rejecting it. It never stops. This is how you are seen on the outside by the people who have to deal with you.

                            From the Bay Citizen:
                            Veterans in metropolitan areas face longer delays for benefits, Bay Citizen analysis reveals
                            by Aaron Glantz — August 29, 2012, 12:00 a.m.
                            So far, change has headed in the wrong direction, despite increased media and political scrutiny. Nationwide, the VA took an average of more than eight months to process a claim in June – about 50 percent longer than the year before. Veterans in New York and North Texas waited the longest, at more than a year on average. Those who appeal a denied claim wait 3½ years for an answer.

                            Why the dramatic differences? A VA spokesman did not respond to numerous email and telephone inquiries seeking an explanation.

                            Delays have increased despite a new $300 million computer system and 3,300 claims processorshired since 2010 – 765 of them for additional positions.
                            The department has pledged to eliminate the claims backlog by 2015, but VA data shows the number of veterans waiting for a decision is growing – to more than 907,000 as of July 30, with 832,000 of them waiting for disability or survivor benefits, while thousands more seek a pension or GI Bill education benefits.

                            Again, comparing your wages against private sector wages without taking into account the intangibles such as total job security, more disposable income and then not adding in a benefits package with a cost level  that you would have a hard time if not impossible time finding anything in the private sector that is comparable even by 50% , except for the C-Suites in corporations.

                            What is probably the most irritating is that there is no scintilla of gratitude for getting far more than private sector employees. Instead statistics generated to fit a a end goal is the only point of consideration. You didn't get you COLA this year. OMG. Time to whine.

                            Do yourself and your ungrateful colleagues a favor and read the CBO , non partisan report , that states unequivocally that Govt workers are now over paid more than private sector equivalents. More over, even the CBO report didn't compare the cost of benefit packages received as a govt employee and what the cost of the same benefits would  be in the private sector if accessible at all.

                            You have no argument. Every last person that has jumped on me sound like ungrateful, put upon whiners that have barricaded themselves in a room that filters out any data that contradicts the data they  want to hear.

                            If it's so bad, go ahead and leave and see what private sector work is like these days . None of you will do it because your too scared you won't be able to get your govt job back.

                            If you weren't, you would have quit for that better private sector job you imply is there for the asking.  Clearly you aren't there for the Higher calling of Public Service.  You are there to get the best possible deal then have the unmitigated audacity to complain about pay freezes when very few Americans, except for those at the very top, have seen pay cut with demands for far higher levels of productivity in order to keep the job.

                            How many civil service employees are fired or laid off permanently every year as a percentage of the growing workforce that has gone up 25% since the depression started?

                            "Contrary to Senator McCain's apparentbelief, federal managers have full authority to take appropriate action against employees who engage in misconduct or fail to satisfy agency-established performance expectations," she wrote in an email.

                            But experts say it is a cumbersome process that needs to be streamlined.

                            "Very few federal employees -- in the hundreds, not the thousands -- are ever fired on the basis of poor performance," said Paul Light, a professor of public service at New York University.

                            in the hundreds assuming 999, the professor is talking about 0.5% of the total workforce.

                            But here more promising news. If you count the ones on probationary periods the number shoots up to an ass grabbing 4% and the permenant employees who come in drunk and hit their bosses.

                            He also said that 8,000 to 10,000 federal workers are fired each year when you count people who are fired for poor conduct (coming to work drunk, hitting the boss, etc.) and workers who don't make it past their initial probationary period, he said.

                            Overhauling the way workers are paid might be a better way to improve performance than making it easier fire people, Palguta said. Currently, salaries and raises are based on length of service, not on performance.

                            "Poor performers are more likely to leave an organization that ties their pay to their performance," he said.

                            The federal government checked into the issue of poor performers in 1999, when the U.S. Office of Personnel Management tried to quantify poor performance. The good news for taxpayers was that the study found supervisors labeled poor performers only a tiny percentage of their workers - 3.7 percent.

                            The researchers had a difficult time finding a significant sample of supervisors who had attempted to take action against a poor performer.

                            The 42 supervisors said it was hard to fire workers because of a lack of support from upper management, varying quality in technical guidance for completing the process, and reluctance to devote time and energy to completing the process.

                            The study said many bosses got discouraged and gave up. "Interviewees found the investment of time and energy required over an extremely long period to be daunting," the report said. "This was compounded by the stress resulting from the employee's counter-charges, grievances, accusations, appeals, general hostility and attempts to subvert the supervisor. One described the documentation required as 'horrendous.'"

                            In the private sector there are no such protections. None. Right to work states can fire employees for any reason or none at all.  When was the last time there was a mass lay-off of US govt employees? Answer there never has been one.

                            Job security, total job security even protecting the incompetent is not a benefit?

                          •  Why don't you publish a diary? (0+ / 0-)

                            You've obviously got enough time on your hands to type out a comment that is as long as most diaries.
                            Put it out there if you really think it's an important issue that folks should know about.
                            Instead of just rambling comments really step up and publish the diary.

                          •  You are factually incorrect. (0+ / 0-)

                            The public service loan program has 2 provisions. If you have only personal stafford loans than it is based on disposable income with an adjustment. If you have stafford loans and plus loans you are only eligible for income contingent. Thats 15% of ALL income.

                            As I said in my diary my wages are directly comparable for KSA etc to the private sector.  Please feel free to look at afge 2669 and then compare the wage and benefit packages for equivalent employees at HCMC covered by the Minnesota Nurses Association contracts. My benefits are no better than those available at HCMC.

                            My health insurance is slightly cheaper because of economy of scale not because it isn't fairly priced. I pay 30% of the premium cost for my care. If anything FEHPB is the model for Obamacare. As to pension coverage MNA nurses have a DB pension with a higher annual multiplier. I have never complained about my compensation EVER. I am very appreciative of the opportunity I have to work with my chosen patient population and in my specialty.

                            Your criticisms of the VA Compensation and Pension system have some merit. A big part of what the system is trying to do is speed claims processing. Its   not perfect but no system ever is optimal. (FWIW I advocate for vets and tell them how to apply for C&P almost every week.) Vets who use the service organizations and have a power of attorney usually get their claims expedited.

                            but the overall satisfaction ratings for the VA HEALTH CARE SYSTEM are equal to or better than any private sector health care system. See Longman and Health of Nations at prospect.org.

                            I work with vets every day and the vast majority are very appreciative of their care. (I was on vacation for the past 3 weeks and a vet today asked if I was ok because he was concerned for my wellbeing as one of his caregivers.)

                            Your casting aspersions on my motivations for public service are a personal attack towards me as a professional and a human being. FWIW I am a very high performer with outstanding performance reviews over time. If you believe that you are capable of delivering comparable health care please attend nursing school at a cost of 20K, pass the boards and enter practice. After 3-5 years we can see if you can cut the mustard as a health care professional.

                          •  Minimal Family Budget for middle class in MPLS (0+ / 0-)

                            Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI MSA (MN)

                            Two Parents, Two Children

                            Item

                            Cost

                            Monthly Housing

                            $848

                            Monthly Food

                            $643

                            Monthly Child Care

                            $1566

                            Monthly Transportation

                            $401

                            Monthly Health Care

                            $449

                            Monthly Other Necessities    

                            $358

                            Monthly Taxes

                            $632

                            Monthly Total

                            $4898

                            Annual Total

                            $58774

                            source http://www.epi.org/...

                            Program Support Assistant 33k-43k
                            SUBSTITUTION OF EDUCATION FOR EXPERIENCE (Transcript Required): Successful completion of (4) years of education above the high school level. This education must have been obtained in an accredited business, secretarial or technical school, junior college, college or university for which high school graduation or the equivalent is the normal prerequisite. One year of full-time undergraduate study is defined as 30 semester hours, 45 quarter hours, or the equivalent in a college or university or at least 20 hours of classroom instruction per week for approximately 36 weeks in a business, secretarial or technical school.https://www.usajobs.gov/...

                            PSA's are far more represntative of the average job than you apear to recognize......
                            The top end of PSA wages are within the working poor range-commonly accepted as 200% of poverty.

                            There are more than a few criticisms of the CBO report. Among them are overly conservative estimates of ension fund asset returns.

                            CBO cautions, however, that “estimates of the costs of benefits are much more uncertain than its estimates of wages, primarily because the cost of defined-benefit pensions that will be paid in the future is more difficult to quantify and because less-detailed data are available about benefits than about wages.”

                            ...
                            But if you’re going to consider indirect costs like uncertainty, you should also factor in indirect advantages for employers, like reduced turnover.

                            A paper to be released next week by EPI also shows that Biggs and Richwine use highly unorthodox methods in comparing public- and private-sector pay. Among other things, they ignore enormous differences in educational attainment between teachers and private-sector workers.

                            http://www.epi.org/...

                            In any event the wage premium data is NOT double the private sector. Arguably federal benefits provide a competitive pressure to support private sector wages. In addition the wage premium data reflects the union premium figures for organized workers.

                            Frankly I think your efforts would be better spent supporting sick, vacation and right to organize.

                            (Lastly the federal government is often the emplyer of last resort for workers with physical and emotional disabilities. I would rather pay these workers to work for the federal government instead of having them on public assistance.)

                            The public sector has now been losing jobs for four years

                            While overall the labor market has added jobs for the last two-and-a-half years, it’s actually just the private sector that’s adding jobs; the public sector is losing them. In August, the public sector lost 7,000 jobs. Since the peak of public-sector employment four years ago in August 2008, the public sector has shed 680,000 jobs. Through ripple effects, the loss of public-sector jobs also causes job loss in the private sector, amplifying the drain on the recovery.

                            http://www.epi.org/...

                            Facts are stubborn things....

                          •  In addition (0+ / 0-)

                            DB pensions save taxpayers money.  

                            Government employee pensions are in general "contributory."  This means that the employee contributes a set amount which is matched by the employer. The investment earnings of the contributions are used to fund the balance of the annuity at the time of employee retirement.

                            FERS employees contribute about 1% of salary to their pension with an employer match.

                            TSP contributions are a matched on a percentage basis up to 6% of salary.

                            Employees pay 6.5% to SS (just like the private sector.)

                            At the end of the day employees are saving 20% of their salary towards their retirement between SS, FERS and TSP. (If you factor in the employer portion its actually 27%) This far exceeds what the average employee contributes in the private sector.

                            The point is that its a well designed program that forces adequate employee savings rates for retirement. These are all part of the total compensation package.

                            Instead of attacking the DB pensions of others wouldn't your efforts be better spent advocating for an improved retirement savings system for the private sector?

                      •  I also think (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        Dburn

                        That ALL employees whether rivate or public sector are UNDERPAID in general when you factor the value of their contributions to the organization as compared to their compensation

      •  the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        HM2Viking

        Person hide rating all your comments is out of line...Ramoth.
        Updated...not for pure agreement, but blatant hr abuse.

        We consume the carcasses of creatures of like appetites, passions and organs with our own, and fill the slaughterhouses daily with screams of pain and fear. Robert Louis Stevenson

        by Christin on Sun Feb 17, 2013 at 03:45:21 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Joels Wife (0+ / 0-)

        Has no Social Security. (She is covered by the old federal retirement system. )

        I am not sure what your burn is but you are not advancing the discussion. The big picture issue is that the corporatists are attacking wages and benefits for all workers.

    •  What a virtuous circle (0+ / 0-)

      Federal employees vote/contribute to politicians who turn around and pay them more. Who really cares what it costs, its only tax dollars.

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