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President Obama's proposed federal pay freeze could cost the local economy $108 million yearly in direct economic impact and $190.3 million annually in total economic impact, according to economist Kelly Cunningham of the National University System Institute for Policy Research. He says that 43,400 civilians were employed by the federal government in San Diego in 2009 with an average wage of $69,128. (This does not include uniformed personnel or postal workers, who are not included in the plan. Less than half, or 47% of federal workers in San Diego are employed by the Department of Defense.) Cunningham used average wage increases of 2007-2009 to estimate wages for 2010 and 2011, and assumed the number of employees would remain constant, even though they have grown considerably since 2007.

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Don Bauder Dec. 1, 2010 @ 4:32 p.m.

FEDERAL WORKERS MAKE MUCH MORE THAN PRIVATE SECTOR WORKERS. Cunningham points out that the average wage of a federal civilian worker in San Diego last year (excluding postal workers) was 1.5 times the average in the private sector. The average wage of federal employees rose almost 15% over the past three years, while private sector wages fell 4.3%. Best, Don Bauder


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