SEA Letter of Support HR790 Civilian Workforce Pay Raise Fairness Act of 2019
Dear Majority Leader Hoyer and Representative Connolly:
On behalf of the Senior Executives Association (SEA) – which represents the interests of career federal executives in the Senior Executive Service (SES), and those in Senior Level (SL), Scientific and Professional (ST), equivalent executive positions, and other senior career leaders – I write to convey our support for H.R. 790, the Federal Civilian Workforce Pay Raise Fairness Act of 2019.
For the past decade, the federal workforce has been treated as the nation’s piggy bank, with nearly $200 billion in pay and benefits being taken for debt reduction and other purposes. Providing all civilian federal employees with a 2.6% raise in 2019, especially following the shutdown, is an important step to ensure the government can attract and retain the talent it needs to serve the American public in a competitive labor market. Moreover, reestablishing pay parity with the uniformed services is applauded and welcomed.
This legislation sends a signal that Congress is serious about ensuring the federal government is an employer of choice. For too long race-to-the-bottom policies related to the federal workforce have become the norm. It is our hope that the silver lining of the shutdown is that the American people now better understand what government does for them every day, how dedicated the professionals who work for them in the government are, and that Congress and the administration will find ways to work together to ensure our federal government has the personnel, tools, and resources necessary to fulfil the duties assigned to it.
SEA is deeply concerned that neglect of federal workforce capabilities in recent years have resulted in an increased risk of government failure, as outlined in a paper we released last week. Strengthening the Senior Executive Service (SES) and civil service and advocating for cultivation of the public service leadership profession are among our top organizational priorities in the 116th Congress. I hope that passage of this legislation is just the beginning of concerted efforts to modernize and strengthen our civil service, to bring data-driven approaches to management and compensation, and much more.
Thank you for your steadfast support of our federal workforce and your leadership on this issue. Please contact SEA Executive Director Jason Briefel (firstname.lastname@example.org) if we can be of further assistance.
Senior Executives Association