Friday, December 11, 2009

Drinking Champagne in Washington, part 2

Excerpts: Boom-Times in the Beltway, By Daniel Foster

There may be 7.3 million Americans out of a job in this economy, but it’s happy days for federal employees. The number of civil servants making $100,000 or more has jumped over 30 percent since the start of the recession. . .

Across the board, the salary bonanza has pushed the average federal worker's pay to $71,206, compared with $40,331 in the private sector.

Washington metropolitan area received nearly 10 times as much stimulus money per capita as the national average, keeping the unemployment rate in the area at 6.2 percent, far below rates of other large cities . . . and the national average of 10.2 percent.

Recovery Act funding alone has fed the creation of 407,000 government contract jobs—or two thirds of all jobs "created" under the Act—according to one independent analysis. And during a time when most businesses are downsizing, the federal government itself actually grew by 13,000 employees in the last year—the first increase since the 1970s.

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