While Americans struggle to come to terms with the crisis in Afghanistan, skyrocketing inflation, and an economy struggling to bounce back from bloated spending bills, President Joe Biden raised federal salaries on Friday for roughly two million federal government employees.
Biden announced the change citing “national emergency or serious economic conditions affecting the general welfare” on Friday in a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Vice President Kamala Harris.
“Specifically, I have determined that for 2022, the across-the-board base pay increase will be 2.2 percent and locality pay increases will average 0.5 percent, resulting in an overall average increase of 2.7 percent for civilian Federal employees, consistent with the assumption in my 2022 Budget,” he wrote. “This alternative pay plan decision will not materially affect our ability to attract and retain a well‑qualified Federal workforce.”
“This taxpayer-funded increase is especially generous because the average federal worker already makes significantly more than the average person toiling away in the productive economy,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
Raises will not go into effect until January 2022, but Biden still chose to make raising salaries a priority the day after a terrorist attack claimed 13 American service members’ lives. The pay bump also follows months of high inflation and, more recently, a producer price index (PPI) that reached a record high.
In a report released in mid-August, the Bureau of Labor Statistics concluded that the producer price index, which measures changes in selling prices received by domestic producers of goods and services, increased by the highest amount ever — 7.8 percent — for the 12 months ending in July, after massive federal spending has continued to shake down the American economy. The Labor Department noted it’s the “largest advance since 12-month data were first calculated in November 2010.”
Other goods that saw massive increases since July 2020 included materials and components used in construction, which swelled as a processed good by 20.4 percent; automobile retailing, which increased by 76.7 percent; and gasoline, which rose by 78 percent.