Proposed legislation to fund the entirety of the federal government and avert another government shutdown also includes provisions to increase federal employee pay by a total of 1.9 percent.
According to documents posted on the House floor site, they raise consists of a basic 1.4 percent increase and 0.5 percent increase in adjustments, both retroactive to the first pay period in 2019.
President Donald Trump signed an executive order in late December 2018 freezing federal employee pay, a move that was deeply unpopular in a period of economic prosperity.
“This legislation rejects the Trump pay freeze and instead gives civil servants a modest cost-of-living increase in their paycheck. And while I’m disappointed that it doesn’t include back pay for our federal contract workers, I’m going to keep fighting to make them whole,” Se. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., said in a statement.
Both the Senate and House have passed different versions of a federal pay raise over the course of budget negotiations, but none of those versions has yet made it to a vote in both chambers of Congress.
"To say federal employees are relieved is an understatement,” National Treasury Employees Union National President Tony Reardon said in a statement.
“So far, 2019 has not been kind to our federal workforce, but this bipartisan compromise funding package is a refreshing turnabout that gives their agencies stable funding and their paycheck a modest bump.”
The legislation also includes an additional $25 million for the Technology Modernization Fund, far below the $250 million authorized by law, but useful for a fund that has only $11 million of its original appropriations remaining.
The infusion of additional dollars for the TMF was not a sure thing, as some members of Congress expressed hesitation to spend more money on the fund before it had delivered measurable results.
The Council of Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency would also see a funding bump under this legislation to pay for improvements to its oversight.gov portal for inspectors general reports.
CIGIE members told Federal Times in September 2018 that they would use additional funds for improving site search functionality, incorporating user-community enhancement suggestions, creating an open recommendations database and maintaining a whistleblower hotline page.
Trump has indicated that while he is not pleased with the just over $1 billion the legislation would authorize for border wall construction (far less than his initial $5.7 billion demand that precipitated the historic month-long government shutdown), he will likely sign the bill if it gets to his desk.
Congress has until midnight Friday to pass funding legislation.