Federal employees to contribute more to retirement plans

Federal employees and members of Congress will be required to contribute more of their pay to their own employees' retirement system, following the adoption of a new bill Thursday.

As detailed in the Washington Post, the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform passed new rules calling for employees and elected officials to up their contributions by 5 percent over a five-year period, beginning with a 1.5 percent increase next year.

The majority of federal employees contribute to the Federal Employees Retirement system, funded by a mixture of Social Security taxes and 0.8 percent of their salary. Other employees who are part of the Civil Service Retirement System have been contributing 7 percent of their salaries to their own plan.

Members of Congress already pay more into the system; their required contribution goes up 8.5 percent over five years.

New hires from 2013 onward will pay the entire amount from the start, totaling 5.8 percent.

As the Post reports, the measure did not have the full support of many Democratic committee members: "Ranking member Elijah Cummings (Md.) saying it 'would effectively create a pay cut for federal employees,' and Rep. Gerald E. Connolly (Va.) calling it 'odious to federal workers' and saying it would make federal jobs 'much less attractive.'

“'I believe this reconciliation [bill] will die a deserved death when and if it gets to the Senate,' Connolly said.'

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