President Trump announced Thursday that he plans to nix an automatic pay raise for federal workers because of the “nation’s fiscal situation.” About 1.8 million people will not get an automatic pay increase next year under the policy. “We must maintain efforts to put our nation on a fiscally sustainable course, and federal agency budgets cannot sustain such increases,” Trump wrote in a letter to leaders of Congress. Most employees were expecting to get a 2.1 percent raise. Trump believes that instead of the “across-the-board” increases currently in place, raises should be based on performance. His plan would also get rid of additional pay for workers who live in parts of the country with high costs of living. The White House said this would save about $25 billion in the next fiscal year. The Senate passed a 1.9 percent pay increase for next year, but the House approved a bill that goes along with Trump’s freeze. “Federal employees deserve the full measure of pay comparability provided by the law, and a 1.9 percent increase is the minimum that Congress should consider,” American Federation of Government Employees President J. David Cox said in a statement.
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