Lawmakers introduced a bipartisan bill Monday to pay Secret Service agents who have maxed out their salary and overtime for the year while protecting President Donald Trump and his family.
The measure, introduced by Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y., chairman of the House Homeland Security subcommittee on transportation and protective security, and Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the top Democrat on the Oversight Committee, would allow the Secret Service to raise agents' salary and overtime cap to $187,000 from $161,900 per year.
It would compensate about 1,300 affected Secret Service employees, according to the House Oversight Committee — and require the Secret Service to submit a report to Congress on its recruitment and retention efforts, The Hill reported.
The rescue comes after Secret Service Director Randolph Alles said last month that more than 1,000 agents had reached the federally mandated cap of $160,000 for annual salary and overtime pay. Those agents account for a third of the Secret Service's workforce.
Alles said some agents would likely be stiffed for time they had already worked, due in part to the expanded mission of protecting Trump's family.
"The men and women of the Secret Service deserve to be paid for the hours they work, period," Katko and Cummings said in a joint statement.
"They put their lives on the line every day and make tremendous personal sacrifices for our country. We cannot expect the Secret Service to recruit and retain the best of the best if they are not being compensated for the additional work that is demanded of them."
Katko, who oversees the Secret Service as chair of a House Homeland Security subcommittee, said the extra hours and overtime cap are "causing huge morale issues and colossal retention issues" for the service.
"It's been a huge problem at the Secret Service for years," he told Syracuse.com. "They are not able to retain people. They lost about 40 percent of the agents they recruited after about five years."
Trump has frequently traveled to his properties in Florida, New Jersey, and Virginia since taking office, which has added to the Secret Service's expenses. Trump's adult children have also traveled for business trips and vacations, The Hill reported.
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