Bill pays back government workers hit by sequester

Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.) and two other House members proposed legislation this week that would require the government to pay back federal employees who were put on furlough because of the sequester.

The Federal Employee Pay Restoration Act, H.R. 3744, states simply: "Federal employees furloughed as a result of reductions in budget authority required pursuant to the Presidential sequestration order dated March 1, 2013, shall be compensated at their standard rate of compensation for the period of such furlough."

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Kilmer said an estimated 600,000 federal employees were furloughed and hit by a 20 percent salary reduction during 2013.

"Federal employees have done nothing wrong and do not deserve to suffer personally because of our nation's fiscal situation and Congressional dysfunction," Kilmer's office wrote in an email to federal employees this week.

Congress has already approved legislation paying back workers hit by the 16-day government shutdown in October. The bill was proposed on the same day the House approved a budget that would scale back the sequester spending cuts that led to the furlough this year.

In the House 62 Republicans voted against the budget, many because it replaces some of the sequester with new revenue and fees that they say amounts to new taxing and spending.

Two Virginia House members are co-sponsors of Kilmer's bill — Reps. Jim Moran (D) and Rob Wittman (R).

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