Fed­eral work­ers get $0 pay stubs.

The News & Observer - - Front Page - BY BRADY MCCOMBS AND JULIET LINDERMAN

Fed­eral work­ers re­ceived pay stubs Fri­day with noth­ing but ze­roes on them as the ef­fects of the gov­ern­ment shutdown hit home, deep­en­ing anx­i­eties about mort­gage pay­ments and un­paid bills.

All told, an es­ti­mated 800,000 gov­ern­ment em­ploy­ees missed their pay­checks for first time since the shutdown be­gan three weeks ago.

Fum­ing em­ploy­ees posted pic­tures of the $0 pay stubs on Twit­ter and vented their frus­tra­tion as the stand­off en­tered its 21st day. This week­end, it will be­come the long­est shutdown in U.S. his­tory.

Some Demo­cratic law­mak­ers seized on the empty pay stubs as a way to re­new crit­i­cism of Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump, who trig­gered the shutdown over his de­mands for fund­ing for a bor­der wall.

Sen. Tim Kaine of Vir­ginia tweeted: “It should be pay­day for hun­dreds of thou­sands of fed­eral work­ers. But thanks to Trump, many are ac­tu­ally get­ting pay stubs like this. He’s treat­ing them like the count­less con­trac­tors he stiffed through­out his busi­ness ca­reer.”

Roughly 420,000 fed­eral em­ploy­ees were deemed es­sen­tial and are work­ing un­paid. An ad­di­tional 380,000 are stay­ing home with­out pay. While fur­loughed fed­eral work­ers have been given back pay in pre­vi­ous shut­downs, there is no guar­an­tee that will hap­pen this time.

Gov­ern­ment con­trac­tors, who have been placed in­def­i­nitely on un­paid leave, don’t get com­pen­sated for lost hours.

The typ­i­cal fed­eral em­ployee makes $37 an hour, which trans­lates into $1,480 a week, ac­cord­ing to La­bor De­part­ment data. That’s nearly $1.2 bil­lion in lost pay each week, when mul­ti­plied by 800,000 fed­eral work­ers.

Many work­ers live pay­check to pay­check and would strug­gle if their wages or salaries were in­ter­rupted.


Bill Striffler, shown Jan. 9 with his wife, Theresa, is an air traf­fic con­troller and the pres­i­dent of the Ne­wark Air­port National Air Traf­fic Con­trollers As­so­ci­a­tion. On Fri­day he re­ceived a pay­check for $0.

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