Hundreds of federal workers haven’t received back pay from shutdown: report

Hundreds of federal workers haven’t received back pay from shutdown: report
© Stefani Reynolds

Numerous federal workers still owed back pay have not received all of the compensation they are due from the recent 35-day partial government shutdown, The Associated Press reported Wednesday.

The news outlet spoke to workers from various agencies that were shuttered from the end of December and through much of January, a period during which hundreds of thousands of federal employees missed two paychecks.

Michael Walter, who does food safety inspections for the Department of Agriculture (USDA), told the AP that he got his back pay on Wednesday, nearly two weeks after the shutdown ended. Two co-workers told him they had not yet received back pay.

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Another woman told the AP that her husband who works for the Bureau of Indian Affairs in South Dakota has only gotten a portion of his back pay.

Acting White House chief of staff Mick MulvaneyJohn (Mick) Michael MulvaneyTrump frustrated with aides who talked to Mueller The Hill's Morning Report — Mueller aftermath: What will House Dems do now? The Hill's Morning Report - Waiting on Mueller: Answers come on Thursday MORE said on Jan. 27, two days after the shutdown ended, that all federal employees should receive the back pay they missed during the funding lapse by the end of that week.

"Some of them could be early this week, some of them may be later this week," he said. "But we hope that by the end of this week all of the back pay will be made up, and of course the next payroll will go out on time."

The Office of Management and Budget, the USDA and the Department of the Interior were among agencies that said restoring missed pay was a priority, but did not directly respond to questions from the AP about how many federal employees still had not been made whole from the shutdown.

The Census Bureau said Wednesday that roughly 850 employees across the U.S. had not yet received back pay or were still waiting to be compensated fully, according to the AP. A department spokesperson said the Bureau expected most of those workers to receive pay by Friday.

The process to pay out missed time for federal workers since the shutdown comes as the threat of another funding lapse looms.

President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump calls Sri Lankan prime minister following church bombings Ex-Trump lawyer: Mueller knew Trump had to call investigation a 'witch hunt' for 'political reasons' The biggest challenge from the Mueller Report depends on the vigilance of everyone MORE signed legislation late last month to reopen the government until Feb. 15, at which point funding is due to expire again for several government agencies.

The president has said he is willing to force another shutdown or declare a national emergency to secure funding for a wall along the southern border if lawmakers do not strike a deal to his liking.

The most recent shutdown began on Dec. 22 amid an impasse between Trump and lawmakers over the president's demands for billions of dollars in border wall funding. The weeks-long shutdown saw roughly one-quarter of the government shuttered, leaving an estimated 800,000 workers furloughed or working without pay.