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Republicans on House panel approve bill to cut postal, federal pensions

From the American Postal Workers Union:

A House committee approved legislation on Feb. 7 that would cut pensions for postal and federal employees, while increasing the contributions the workers must make toward their retirement. The party-line vote was 22-16, with Republicans voting in favor of the retirement cuts and Democrats voting against.

“This bill is an outrageous attack on postal and federal employees,” said APWU President Cliff Guffey. “Some politicians are quick to cut benefits for middle-class workers, but they fight to the death to protect tax breaks for the super-rich.”

“Despite its name, the ‘Securing Annuities for Federal Employees Act’ would cut retirement benefits for postal and federal workers and make them pay more for less,” said Legislative Director Myke Reid. “This bill would amount to a pay cut for our members.”

The legislation (H.R. 3813) was shepherded through the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee by a pair of politicians who are well-known opponents of postal workers: Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL). The two are co-sponsors of H.R. 2309, a bill that would destroy the Postal Service as we know it.

Increases Costs, Cuts Benefits

H.R. 3813 would increase the amount postal and federal employees contribute to their retirement by 1.5 percent, with the increase phased in over three years, beginning in 2013.

Employees with less than five years of service would face an increase of 3.2 percent. (Employees in the Federal Employee Retirement System [FERS] currently pay 0.8 percent of salary into the pension fund. Employees enrolled in the Civil Service Retirement System [CSRS] currently pay 7 percent to their retirement system.)

It also would reduce pensions for employees with less than five years of service by calculating annuities based on the average of employees’ high-five salary years instead of their high-three years, which is the current method. In addition, their pensions would be calculated at a lower rate of 0.7 percent per year, down from 1 percent.

“This bill would amount to a pay cut for our members.”

– Legislative and Political Director Myke Reid

The measure would eliminate the supplemental annuity provision, which augments benefits for employees who retire before they are eligible for Social Security benefits at age 62.

Following committee adoption of the bill, the House Rules Committee voted to merge it with the H.R. 7, a $260 billion highway bill, which the House is expected to consider during the week of Feb. 13.

APWU members are encouraged to contact their representative as soon as possible and urge them to oppose the bill as it is currently written.

via House Panel Approves Bill to Cut Postal, Federal Pensions.

  • Carl Hulsewede

    Congress needs to lead by example and convert their retirement plan to FERS. Then these changes would affect them and their staffs. The House Leadership does not care about the Federal Work Force. They may find out the hard way during the November Election that Federal Workers are on to their games.

  • John Smith

    I usually don’t bother to vote.. but since the new game is protect the rich at the cost of the middle class.. going to vote democrat.

  • Kwa

    Lets cut their pensions by 40 percent & make them pay 400.00 dollars a month for health insurance. How about another 300.00 for their spouse to get 50 percent of 63 percent of spouses retirement.

  • david

    They are all millionares retirement plans dont mean nothing to them but everything to us.
    They suck!

  • Ed Shanahan

    I don’t know when Issa and Ross terms come up for re-election, but I will say this. Hey California, Hey Florida, wake up and do everyone a favor when it comes for these two being re-elected. They might have the big money backing them. I believe if enough of the middle-class hard working American’s get out and vote. We can finally see the beginning of some sense of sanity on the hill

  • Kwa

    That is after working 34 years. I a tired of paying their salary and funding their retirement. They were elected to represent the people not 1 group. Then they discriminate against the the rest of people. We pay for the rich & the poor. Both of those two groups take from the working class. We need to down size Goverment & Postal management. Managers can’t manage because some one is making decisions who don’t know facility.to many layers of managers. Bad leadership goverment & post office.

  • Marilynn Reeves

    I am so thankful I did not convert to FERS when they were pushing us to do so. Now if they will only leave CSRS alone.

  • unforgiven

    The more this current two party system screws the middle class, the closer we come to a true blood letting kind of armed revolution. I truly don’t think they realize how their callous economic and financial rape of the people, along with their attitude of being above the law, pushes us closer and closer to the kind of conflict, that we think only happens in places like Libya, Syria and Egypt. That’s the real legacy that they’re going to leave to our grandchildren, the choice between revolution or slavery.

  • steve

    Turds Ross and Issa have too go! They are literally killing the middle class. Wake up all you Republican Postal Workers….. Elections have consequences and we are all getting the short end of the stick on this one!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • unforgiven

    steve, you don’t get it, it’s not just the republicans that are screwing us….

  • joe j.

    ok, well i say talk is cheap. step up to the plate and vote to have donahoe fired! they need 25,000 signatures. there are only 1250 up to date, and february 24th, 2012 is the deadline.go to postal news dated january 26 and click on it to sign your vote. as for issa and ross, bottom line is they are retarded, and will not succeed in their pursuit to end the retirement benefits they are targeting at this time , remember this bill has to go before the senate and be voted on.

  • prouddemocrat

    All 435 seats in Congress are up for re-election in 2012. Time to send a message.

  • Cheryl M

    joe j
    Thanks for the advice.I just signed the petition to fire PMG
    I am a postal worker in WI.Would never have dreamed it
    would come to this.Everyone needs to vote now more than
    ever

  • tadios

    Can’t believe they want to attatch this to a highway bill. I think the republicans are smoking crack.

  • Bernardo

    We only have to do one thing my felllows americans, don’t reelect Issa nor Ross, we have to campaign against them and then they wiil coward to lose what they have, go for it people, save the american way of living now before it’s too late