While federal employee groups support the White House’s recommendation earlier this week of a 2023 federal pay raise of 4.6%, most of them are also pressing for a higher increase of 5.1%.
“The White House proposal to give federal employees an average 4.6% pay increase in 2023 makes clear that this administration understands that improving salaries will help attract and retain highly skilled workers around the country, a sentiment that NTEU strongly supports,” said the National Treasury Employees Union which represents about 150,000 employees in 34 federal agencies and offices.
- SEE ALSO: 2023 Federal Retiree COLA Watch
NTEU has endorsed the Federal Adjustment of Income Rates (FAIR) Act (H.R. 6398 and S. 3518) calling for an average 5.1 percent pay adjustment for federal workers next year, consisting of a 4.1% across-the-board increase plus an average 1% for locality pay.
“The White House proposal is a great starting point in the debate over federal pay in 2023 and NTEU will encourage Congress to build on that to reach the 5.1% pay raise as called for in the FAIR Act,” said NTEU National President Tony Reardon.
NTEU highlighted the White House budget notes that between 2009 and 2020, U.S. average worker pay rose by 38% while federal civilian pay increases amounted to only a 15% increase.
“We applaud President Biden for proposing significant increases in discretionary spending for our federal agencies, which have been starved of resources for too long,” said American Federation of Government Employees National President Everett Kelley. “The 4.6% pay raise for federal employees proposed by the White House is a good opening offer, but to bring federal salaries close to market rates and compensate for the recent surge in inflation, we ask Congress to approve the 5.1% increase under the FAIR Act.”
“With the 4.6% average federal pay increase proposed for 2023, Biden demonstrates appreciation for the millions of hardworking public servants who keep the government running day after day,” said National President Ken Thomas of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association (NARFE) ““If enacted, the 4.6 percent average pay increase would the largest since 2002. The amount tracks with recent increases in private-sector pay and the expected military pay increase for the second consecutive year.”
The final 2023 federal pay raise figure won’t likely be released until December with pay tables from the Office of Personnel Management. Getting to that figure is usually a lengthy process involving Congress. Many federal employees are concerned about rising inflation, which could also influence the final number.