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AFGE Blasts Armed Services Leaders For Planning Familiar Assault On Working Americans

"Quite frankly, the lawmakers associated with this egregious legislation should know better," AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. said.

The federal government's overall workforce, particularly in DoD, consists mostly of more expensive contractors. In DoD, total civilian personnel funding increased from $41 billion in 2001 to $69 billion in 2010; during that same period, total service contract funding increased from $104 billion to $181 billion.

As noted by Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Levin in 2011: "Over the last decade, DoD spending for service contract services has more than doubled, from $72 billion in fiscal year 2000 to more than $150 billion (not including spending for overseas contingency operations), while the size of the Department's civilian workforce has remained essentially unchanged." 

And as noted last year by Chairman McKeon: "The Department now spends a greater portion of its budget purchasing services than it does purchasing weapons systems, hardware, and other products. In fact, the Department spends more on contracted services than it does on pay for military and civilian personnel combined."

Nevertheless, Chairman McKeon and Ranking Member Inhofe would impose no sacrifices on contractors. In fact, by arbitrarily reducing the federal workforce, agencies would simply contract out more work at higher prices. In 2011, the Project on Government Oversight (POGO) compared the cost of federal employees and contractors in a recent seminal study— Bad Business: Billions of Taxpayer Dollars Wasted on Hiring Contractors—determined that "on average, contractors charge the government almost twice as much as the annual compensation of comparable federal employees. Of the 35 types of jobs that POGO looked at in its new report—the first report to compare contractor billing rates to the salaries and benefits of federal workers—it was cheaper to hire federal workers in all but just two cases."

If Congressional Republicans want to reduce DoD, they should take on their weapons contractors cronies by reforming how we buy their products, reduce excessive layers of management bureaucracy, cap at  $200,000 annually taxpayer subsidies to contractor compensation, and substitute reliable and experienced federal employees for ruinously costly contractors.  If Congressional Republicans want to end sequestration, they should work with the President and Congressional Democrats on revenue-raising offsets. 

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