Pay Gap Between Government, Private Sector Widens to 34 Percent

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Pay gap between government, private sector widens to 34 percent - Fede... http://www.federalnewsradio.com/index.php?nid=851&sid=3085581 Print Pay gap between government, private sector widens to 34 percent Monday - 10/22/2012, 5:50am ET The gap in pay between federal employees and private-sector workers has jumped 8 percentage points since last year, according to new data presented at a Federal Salary Council meeting Friday. On average, federal employees earn 34 percent less than their priva
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  Print Monday - 10/22/2012, 5:50am ET Jack Moore Digital News Writer @jmooreWFED Pay gap between government, private sector widens to34 percent The gap in pay between federal employees and private-sector workers has jumped 8percentage points since last year, according to new data presented at a Federal SalaryCouncil meeting Friday.On average, federal employees earn 34 percent less than their private-sectorcounterparts, according to the council's analysis.The pay gap, which is calculated using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics based onpay in 34 locality pay areas, was26 percentlast year.The council, which is made up of labor representatives and pay experts, makes recommendations onfederal pay to the President's Pay Agent.Over the last several years, the council's analysis has shown the pay gap increasingly widening.Still, two years after President Barack Obamaproposed a two-year pay freezefor civilian governmentemployees, the issue of whether and how much feds are underpaid remains contentious.A Congressional Budget Office study released in January found, overall, federal employees actuallyearnabout 2 percent morein wages compared to private-sector workers, with wider differences based oneducation level.But a June 2011 report from the the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, indicatedgovernment pay outstripped private-sector pay by 14 percent.In reviewing various statistics on federal pay, the Government Accountability Office said the widely divergentresults were due to thedifferent methodologiesthe various studies used. Attempting to compare orextrapolate from them would be potentially problematic, GAO auditors said. New system leads to greater data fluctuations Concerns over methodology also payed a role in the salary council's latest report.In particular, changes to the way BLS gathered the data could affect the council's analysis, according todocuments presented at Friday's meeting.Before 2011, the council relied on data from the National Compensation Survey to calculate the paydifference.However, BLS phased out the traditional model in favor of one that combined it with OccupationalEmployment Statistics data — which cut the sample size in half.When the council first began using this revised model last year, it was concerned about sizable increases in the pay gaps, according to council documents. About 40 percent of the increase was attributable to thereduced sample size, with other factors including the two-year federal pay freeze.The council also noted increasing fluctuation in the average change of the pay gap across the 34locality-pay areas since the BLS adopted the new model.The council unanimously voted to request the bureau to restore the full National Compensation Survey Pay gap between government, private sector widens to 34 percent - Fede...http://www.federalnewsradio.com/index.php?nid=851&sid=30855811 of 210/22/2012 6:35 AM  model.In addition, the council recommended naming 12 new cities to locality pay areas. RELATED STORIES  Feds work a month less per year than private sector, Heritage report findsFederal pay statistics are easily manipulated, GAO reportsIn the federal pay debate, 1 + 1 doesn't always equal 2CBO: Feds earn 16 percent more in pay, benefits than private- sector workers Pay gap between government, private sector widens to 34 percent - Fede...http://www.federalnewsradio.com/index.php?nid=851&sid=30855812 of 210/22/2012 6:35 AM
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