(Adam Andrzejewski, RealClear Wire) President Joe Biden wants to add 82,000 more employees to the federal workforce, putting civilian federal payrolls at their highest levels since World War II, according to Government Executive.
While the presidential budget is rarely adopted as introduced, the Biden budget plan for FY 2024 is to grow the federal workforce by 3.6% to historic levels, sending a strong signal to Congress that the White House wants to pursue an aggressive expansion of U.S. government.
According to the Government Executive, the Treasury Department would see the greatest spike in personnel under Biden’s proposal, thanks to 13,000 proposed new employees. This addition is largely fueled by the $80 billion in new funding Congress provided the IRS — a Treasury agency — in the Inflation Reduction Act.
Other agencies that would see large employment boosts under Biden’s proposal include the Department of Veterans Affairs, which would increase its workforce by 20,000 employees, the largest gross increase in employees across the bureaucracy.
Land management agencies would also see employment spikes, with the National Park Service increasing its rolls by 7% to work on conservation efforts, the Fish and Wildlife Service increasing its staff by 10% to investigate wildlife crimes, and the Agriculture Department’s Natural Resources Conservation Service looking to grow by 17% to conduct more climate research and expand climate hubs.
Our 2021 oversight report of federal employees’ pay showed that the average pay was $100,000 in 100 of 122 executive agencies and departments. That number has likely increased, but a conservative estimate brings pay for 82,000 new employees to $8.2 billion in the first year — without benefits.
While the total cost of all of these new employees has yet to be calculated with precision, the aggressive goals of the Biden Administration to increase the federal workforce is sure to leave taxpayers with a steep bill when a budget eventually passes.