SEA Statement on President’s FY18 Budget Proposal
Upon the release of President Trump’s first full budget request to Congress, Senior Executives Association (SEA) President Bill Valdez issued the following statement:
“The Senior Executives Association (SEA) supports the general intent of the President’s FY18 budget proposal, which calls for a long overdue reexamination of the scope and purpose of the Executive Branch.
“We also applaud the effort to “align the workforce to meet the needs of today and the future rather than the requirements of the past.” SEA believes that U.S. taxpayers deserve a federal workforce that is focused on mission accomplishment and has the needed training and skillset to accomplish those vital national missions.
“Unfortunately, some aspects of the President’s FY18 budget proposal run counter to these admirable goals. The President’s budget continues and doubles down on the disturbing trend of the past few years that has seen Washington take over $120 billion to date in pay and benefits out of the hands of middle class civil servants. If enacted, the President’s budget would take an additional $200 billion of earned pay and benefits out of the pockets of federal civil servants.
“As the Administration pursues an ambitious plan to reform and reorganize the federal workforce, this budget proposal sends an unfortunate signal to prospective and current employees alike – Uncle Sam is putting himself at a disadvantage when it comes to the war for talent. This budget sends a strong signal to the employment marketplace – the federal government is reducing pay and benefits at a time when the need for the best and brightest serving in government is at its highest.
“Rather than reducing pay and benefits, the correct policy should be to understand how the federal government could restructure pay and benefits to better compete with the private sector. In addition, the federal government desperately needs a new performance accountability framework that will reward high performance and encourage innovation and measured risk taking.
“SEA looks forward to working with the Administration to examine pay and benefit restructuring that will attract the best talent available and the development of a performance accountability framework that keeps those talented workers engaged and focused on mission accomplishment.
“As Congress considers this budget proposal, I urge Members to strongly consider how enactment of this budget, including cuts to the modest pay and benefits earned by federal workers, will affect the government services and programs their constituents depend on. We may save a little money in the near term, but the American public will ultimately bear the steep costs of a federal workforce without the support and resources necessary to deliver upon missions assigned to them by Congress and the President.”