Lewis Diuguid

McCaskill right to try to kill bonuses for elite group of federal workers

Priority should be given to a bill Sen. Claire McCaskill introduced Friday that would kill bonuses for members of the Senior Executive Service at a time when sequestration is cutting pay for most federal workers and hurting everyday citizens.

A Senate subcommittee report released Friday found that a top group of federal workers is to get cash bonuses despite the $85 billion in federal spending cuts, which began March 1. The report showed that the Senior Executive Service group, making $119,000 to $179,000, received more than $340 million in bonuses from 2008 to 2011. The McClatchy Washington Bureau reports that this group constitutes less than 1 percent of the federal workforce.

McCaskill, who heads the Senate Subcommittee on Financial and Contracting Oversight, is right to take action to stop the bonuses. She is quoted saying, “The idea that some of the highest-paid federal government employees could be getting bonuses while others are being furloughed is outrageous. This legislation will ensure that doesn’t happen.”

Out of fairness to everyone affected by sequestration, let’s hope McCaskill’s bill passes. Even Republicans could back this legislative action.