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Top House Dems Urge Appropriators To Fund Overtime Pay for Secret Service Agents in 2016 and 2020 Presidential Election Years

Nov 15, 2016
Press Release

Top House Dems Urge Appropriators To Fund Overtime Pay for Secret Service Agents in  2016 and 2020 Presidential Election Years

Washington, DC (Nov. 15, 2016)—Today, Reps. Elijah E. Cummings and Bennie G. Thompson, Ranking Members of the Committees on Oversight and Government Reform and Homeland Security, sent a letter to the House Committee on Appropriations urging appropriators to include  funding for Fiscal Year 2017 that would ensure that Secret Service agents are eligible to be paid for the overtime they earn in each of the 2016 and 2020 presidential election years.

 

Press accounts report that at least1,000 Secret Service agents have already “maxed out” their annual overtime and salary under the cap on premium pay codified at 5 U.S.C. §5547, which prohibits agents from being paid for the overtime they work once they reach the maximum allowable annual salary for the pay rate of GS-15. According to these reports, some agents reached the annual limit as early as June and have been ineligible to be paid for the considerable overtime required for the national political conventions and around-the-clock protection of the presidential candidates and their families.

“The Secret Service has a no-fail mission, and we cannot expect to achieve adequate staffing levels when so many agents are being asked to work overtime for free,” the Members wrote.  “While the enactment of provisions that would permanently authorize an increase in the annual compensation limit for agents during years with presidential elections would best ensure the retention of Secret Service’s most experienced agents, enacting the waiver provision in S. 3001 is an essential first step.”

Cummings and Thompson called on House appropriators to give the Secret Service funds to pay for additional overtime agents have earned this year up to level I of the Executive Schedule.

Click here and see below to read today’s letter.

November 15, 2016

 

The Honorable Hal Rogers                                         The Honorable Nita Lowey

Chairman                                                                     Ranking Member

Committee on Appropriations                                    Committee on Appropriations

U.S. House of Representatives                                   U.S. House of Representatives

Washington, D.C.  20515                                           Washington, D.C.  20515

 

Dear Chairman Rogers and Ranking Member Lowey:

 

We write today to support the inclusion in any legislation making appropriations for fiscal year 2017 of the provision included in Section 558 of S. 3001, the Homeland Security Appropriations bill for fiscal year 2017, that would ensure that Secret Service agents are eligible to be paid for the overtime they earn in each of the 2016 and 2020 presidential election years.  We also urge the inclusion of adequate funding to ensure that the Secret Service can pay for additional overtime agents have earned in 2016 up to level I of the Executive Schedule. 

 

Please find enclosed a recent USA Today article reporting that at least 1,000 Secret Service agents have already “maxed out” their annual overtime and salary under the cap on premium pay codified at 5 U.S.C. §5547, which prohibits agents from being paid for the overtime they work once they reach the maximum allowable annual salary for the pay rate of GS-15.  According to the article, some agents reached the annual limit as early as June and have been ineligible to be paid for the considerable overtime required for the national political conventions and around-the-clock protection of the presidential candidates and their families.

 

The Secret Service has a no-fail mission, and we cannot expect to achieve adequate staffing levels when so many agents are being asked to work overtime for free.  While the enactment of provisions that would permanently authorize an increase in the annual compensation limit for agents during years with presidential elections would best ensure the retention of Secret Service’s most experienced agents, enacting the waiver provision in S. 3001 is an essential first step.  Therefore, we urge that the House recede and accept the provisions contained in S. 3001, Section 558, which would authorize raising the annual compensation limit in 2016 and 2020 and also raise the annual limit up to level I of the Executive Schedule to ensure that the men and women of the Secret Service receive fair compensation for their work fulfilling the agency’s critical mission.

 

                                                                 Sincerely,

 

 

 

Elijah E. Cummings                                                    Bennie G. Thompson             

Ranking Member                                                        Ranking Member       

Committee on Oversight and                                      Committee on Homeland Security

Government Reform                                                              

 

 

Enclosure

 

cc:        The Honorable Thad Cochran, Chairman

            Senate Committee on Appropriations

 

            The Honorable Barbara Mikulski, Vice Chairwoman

            Senate Committee on Appropriations

114th Congress