Response from NM Senator. Pay attention to the 3rd paragraph. The Senator thinks the freeze only applies to the COLA. Don't know about LLNL but at LANL we have not had COLA's for at least a decade or more.
Thank you for contacting me regarding pay for employees of New Mexico's national laboratories. I appreciate hearing from you on this important issue.
Throughout my service in Congress, I have supported both the missions and employees of Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) and Sandia National Laboratories (SNL). The scientists at the labs conduct some of the most critical research for our country and they are an integral part of our national security. It is my honor to represent them as one of New Mexico's U.S. Senators.
As you may know, in an effort to balance the budget, President Obama called for a three year spending freeze on discretionary non-defense spending and a federal employee pay freeze in November of last year. On the heels of the Presidents' announcement, Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced that Department of Energy employees, including those at New Mexico's national laboratories, also will be subject to this pay freeze. A pay freeze means that employees working at LANL and SNL will not see an annual cost of living adjustment in 2011.
I believe that all national laboratory employees, including those in New Mexico, deserve competitive salaries and benefits. As the workforce retires, the national labs will need to recruit thousands of top level and highly skilled personnel to complete many of the critical functions. Competing salaries and benefits will help recruit the employees of the future. With this in mind, I am closely monitoring long term proposals to balance the budget and the possible effects these proposals would have on our vital national laboratories.
This BLOG is for LLNL present and past employees, friends of LLNL and anyone impacted by the privatization of the Lab to express their opinions and expose the waste, wrongdoing and any kind of injustice against employees and taxpayers by LLNS/DOE/NNSA. The opinions stated are personal opinions. Therefore, The BLOG author may or may not agree with them before making the decision to post them. Comments not conforming to BLOG rules are deleted. Blog author serves as a moderator. For new topics or suggestions, email firstname.lastname@example.org
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