While federal workers go without pay, senior Trump administration officials are poised to get $10,000 raises.

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Washington, January 4, 2019 | comments
Washington Post

While many federal workers go without pay and the government is partially shut down, hundreds of senior Trump political appointees are poised to receive annual raises of about $10,000 a year.

The pay raises for cabinet secretaries, deputy secretaries, top administrators and even Vice President Mike Pence are scheduled to go into effect beginning Jan. 5 without legislation to stop them, according to documents issued by the Office of Personnel Management and experts in federal pay.

The raises appear to be an intended consequence of the shutdown: When lawmakers failed to pass bills on Dec. 21 to fund multiple federal agencies, they allowed an existing pay freeze to lapse. Congress enacted a law capping pay for top federal executives in 2013 and renewed it each year. The raises will occur because that cap will expire without legislative action by Saturday, allowing raises that have accumulated over those years but never took effect to kick in, starting with paychecks issued next week.

Cabinet secretaries, for example, would be entitled to a jump in annual salary from $199,700 to $210,700. Deputy secretaries would be entitled to a raise from $179,700 to $189,600. Others affected are under secretaries, deputy directors and other top administrators.

The pay of Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to rise from $230,700 to $243,500.

“It looks like Trump has protected his own appointees and everyone else gets screwed,” Rep. Don Beyer (D-Va.), whose Northern Virginia district has 77,000 federal workers, said (in an interview). He suggested that the president fix the problem by immediately issuing an executive order cancelling the raises.

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