FBI Agents Association (FBIAA) President Tom O’Connor said Tuesday that, heading into a new year with a shutdown still in effect, “the American public can be assured that the FBIAA’s membership — which includes nearly 13,000 special agents of the FBI— are on the job 24 hours a day, seven days a week to protect our country from criminal and terrorist threats.”
“These men and women are doing so while facing a confluence of policies and gridlock that are causing financial hardship for agents and their families,” he said. “FBIAA members and others are currently working without pay or paid leave because of a fourth government shutdown in five years. The FBIAA calls on elected officials to work together to end the shutdown and restore agents’ pay. Additionally, FBIAA urges Congress and the White House to provide fair wages and tax treatment to special agents.”
“Due to years of pay freezes, federal employee pay lags significantly behind the private sector, and this disparity makes it more difficult to recruit skilled professionals to government service. At a minimum, the 1.9 percent pay increase for federal employees that the Senate passed with over 90 votes should become law and applied retroactively to 2019 wages when the shutdown ends.”
O’Connor noted that special agents can be transferred to different offices per the needs of the FBI, but the 2017 tax law eliminated the moving expense deduction, which offset the relocation expense burden for special agents and their families.
“As a result, moving reimbursements are now considered taxable income,” he said. “FBIAA urges Congress to enact legislation to provide tax relief to special agents similar to the bipartisan Relocation Expense Parity Act that was introduced during the last Congress.”
O’Connor added that FBIAA members “will continue to protect the American public and defend the Constitution from all enemies, foreign and domestic.”
“Elected officials should end the uncertainty that the shutdown is causing agents and their families and find a way to fairly compensate these brave men and women.”