National Deficit Commission Proposed Big Hits on Feds and Postal Workers, Retirees

Archived National Association of Postal Supervisors Legislative Report

Deficit Commission Proposes Big Hits on Feds and Postal Workers, Retirees

The co-chairs of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility on Wednesday released their recommendations for significant savings in federal spending. As feared, the proposals would bring significant pain to the active and retired federal and postal workforce.

Co-commission chairs Erskine Bowles and former Senator Alam Simpson in a preliminary document proposed:

— A 3-year pay freeze on all federal employees;

— A 10% cut in the federal workforce;

— Increasing the federal “high-3” retirement formula to a “high-5” approach;

— A significant increase in federal and postal employee contributions for retirement benefits;

— Lower federal civilian and military retiree benefits, and

— Increases in federal and postal retiree premiums for health benefits.

In addition the co-chairs would curb Social Security benefits and eliminate up to $100 billion annually in various tax breaks.

Whether these draft recommendations become the final recommendations of the commission is highly uncertain. President Obama’s directive establishing the deficit commission and appointing its 18 members requires 14 of the panel’s 18 members to agree to any proposal for it to become the commission’s official recommendation.

The scary prospect for federal and postal employees is that even if the deficit commission fails to reach agreement on changes in some controversial areas affecting all Americans — like the changes to the tax code or Social Security benefits — the commission could still go ahead and zero-in on federal workforce pay and benefits, and recommend changes there. Any deficit commission recommendation would still need to be approved by Congress and signed-off by the President.

The commission is required to file its report with President Obama by December 1st. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) previously pledged to bring to a House vote before the end of the year on any proposals officially proposed by the commission.

NAPS is closely monitoring the work of the deficit commission and will continue to advocate for the preservation of postal pay and benefits. NAPS joined with 17 other federal and postal employee groups last month in urging the commission to respect the value of public service and the solvency of the health insurance and retirement systems that cover federal and postal workers and retirees.

Bruce Moyer

19 thoughts on “National Deficit Commission Proposed Big Hits on Feds and Postal Workers, Retirees

  1. National death fix it Commission. The Goal is Population Control. Placing economics over justice is Terrorism. Terrorism begets terrorism. YHVH solution for those entrusted with enforcing Moral Law and the Laws of the US Constitution and refuse to do so for personal gain is [PRKD] Peoples Righteous Kill Defense. Treason is punishable by death. YHVH sends Angels of Death.

  2. Yeah Don, blame the Republicans who were elected in November and haven’t even been sworn in yet. I swear you union guys haven’t any sense at all. The people screwing you are the ones you bought and paid for with union money. And now they will thank you by screwing the middle class. Obama, Pelosi, and Reid, all Democrats, all endorsed by “working people.” And all out to screw workers while protecting the rich and the lazy.

    The fact is, the federal and state governments are bloated, fat, and unaffordable. And extremely mis-managed. Now the workers will pay the price. America is on the verge of a tax revolt and it won’t be pretty when it happens.

  3. Hey Dave- Complain about Obama all you want , but, do you actually think McLame and Mama Grizzly wouldn’t have screwed you? Give me a break……

  4. Yes, Mr. Potter! I didn’t think you had it in you, but you have even put me to shame. Thanks for keeping the spirit of Postal Management alive. Screw the little guy, we got ours.

  5. I am enjoying my retirement since I left the postal service. although my first retirement check was about 10 dollars short. It was only $25,000.00 but I will just have to cut back on some expenses until I get it straightened out. Instead of eating out every day of the month, one day I will have to get my maid to cook me a steak. I guess I could get a part time job at Walmart.

  6. Remember, the Postmaster General said Obama would be good for the Post Office. I warned my fellow mailhandlers that doesn’t mean postal workers.

  7. CHANGE WE CAN BELIEVE IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Obama has got to go!!!!!!!! How are you idiots who supported him feeling now????

  8. This Deficit Commision is a sham. Remember who put this together, the President. The targeted answer the socialist want is to raise taxes. Cut the taxes, deregulate, eliminate government unelected offices. Dept of education after it came into existence our education levels went down. Dept of Agriculture, there are more officials working in that dept than there are farmers in America. Give me a break

  9. These people have cobbled together a rather poor collection of ideas to present for consideration.

    A 3-year pay freeze on all federal employees

    Federal employees are apparently a lower class of citizen. While federal money went for million dollar bonuses for those that almost brought this country to financial ruin with their greed, it would seem to be up to the humble federal worker to make things right. Rather than freeze the pay of say,a custodian at the VA, how about a freeze on workers making over 70 thousand per year instead? Let the lower paid people at least keep the semblance of a livable wage.

    A 10% cut in the federal workforce

    It’s rather silly to just throw a number out there with nothing to back it up.Undoubtedly cuts can be made, but to what end result? The actual percentage may be higher or lower than the stated amount, but we need to deal with logic and efficiency, not someone’s idea of a nice round number.

    Increasing the federal “high-3″ retirement formula to a “high-5″ approach

    This would seem to be aimed at the older workers in the civil service retirement system. Aside from showing dubious character and integrity in changing the rules 25 years after this plan was closed, it would have an opposite result on budgetary considerations. Most affected employees would just extend their careers to recoup losses incurred by a new formula.This would prevent them from being replaced by much lower paid employees.

    A significant increase in federal and postal employee contributions for retirement benefits

    This seems redundant in that it was covered in the change to the high 3 formula,
    as listed above, for civil service employees. The newer FERS employees pay into social security. Should they pay more into this system than everyone else does?

    Lower federal civilian and military retiree benefits

    Along the same line as the first item. Cap the maximum federal retirement at
    60 thousand per year. Let the VA custodian have his 1400. a month in peace.

    Increases in federal and postal retiree premiums for health benefits

    It would seem that we already have this. The costs increase by leaps and bounds every year. Federal plans seem to be middle of the road. not as good as a lot of state and local government plans, but better than nothing, or the Wal mart group plan. How about suggesting a 3 year freeze on premiums rather than let the health care industry pick our collective pockets at will?

    It seems that these people feel that federal workers would make convenient and politically expedient scapegoats. Drag down the federal employees and make the rest of the country feel good by comparison.

    God bless America?

  10. Most health insurance premiums have been increasing well above the rate of inflation, for over 10 years. When does the medical industry have to control costs and bit eht e bullet. take cuts like everyone. Everyone, except the executives and to management in most private and government institutions: they just get bonuses for every thing they do, including losing money, jobs and cutomer/employee lives.

  11. The excuse from USPS management for budget shortfalls has been the $5 billion a year retiree health benefit prepayment. Now, these clowns want us to pay more. Fuck ’emm

  12. It makes no since to incorporate these changes, when the USPS OIG has already
    indicated through their audit that the PO could recoup $142 Billion, as to why they need to increase USPS employees contributions! We have payed enough and so have the customers! Let’s get real here. We know that congress is using the money that was there for the general fund, just like social security and medicare.
    The aim of congress is apparent. No taxes are paid on postal products at this time. However, if they privatize the PO then they could raise the price of postal products and intern TAX the services! If Americans are angry at a simple .02 cents increase now, wait til it goes up to .75 cents and hve to pay taxes on it then! Wake up America and smell the coffee! The days of the USPS as the cash cow are going to expand!

  13. Marty, If you’d read the article you might notice the co-chairs of this commission aren’t even at this times holding elective office. Simpson is a former Republican senator from Wyoming And Bowles, a Democrat, was on Clintons staff. Whine all you want, cuts and freezes are coming, and COPA has nothing to do with it. The reason to have people on a commission like this that are not holding elective office is so something can get done instead of grid-lock.

  14. Let’s see…. Obama rewards the union leadership with stimulus money, and gives the workers the shaft. Hmmm, well I can see were are getting hosed, and all we have left is loose change. That’s what you get with the Chicago way, pay off your cronies, screw the workers to keep them dependant upon the government so that they will follow like little sheep to what the union boss says and vote the politicians back in again. Welcome to Obama’s world, everyone can live in a straw hut, and he can vacation all over the world, sounds more like the leader of a banana republic than the USA.

  15. I am a U S Postal worker ready to retire. If it were not for Social Security my postal retirement pension would place me well below the national poverty levels. I never vote for a liberal be a liberal republican or democrat. I know I speak for many in the post office who never vote for a democrat, when I say elected officials want all the sacrifice to fall on the lower class. Pensions for the (ruling class) elected officials is very generous and the length of time of service to qualify them for these pensions and benefits is quite short in comparison to the working class. We can save money and improve government by keeping officials at their home offices where their voters reside. In the modern telecommunication age why is so much time spent in Washington where all the corruption exists?

  16. What about all the money we gave to COPA? The committee with these great ideas was appointed by President Obama! Didn’t our unions help him get elected too? Thought Obama was on our side. Doesn’t look like it!!! The ones making up this committee are not the ones we elected on Nov 2nd as some of you morons have stated, but rather the democrats we put in two years ago, the same ones that we continue to give money to via COPA.

  17. Instead of naming it the National Deficit Commission it should be named How To Screw The Middle Class Commission. Lower income people get their food stamps and other welfare programs and the wealthy aren’t really affected. Let’s srew the retired people on a fixed income. I guess it’s what we voted for on Nv.2nd so we reap what we sow.

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