The federal government’s restrained growth

Since President Obama took office in January 2009, the federal government has grown by a modest 0.8 percent, or 22,000 workers, as of September 2012. That’s not exactly the massive government expansion some Tea Party critics have characterized. One reason is the 17 percent decline in head count at the financially troubled U.S. Postal Service. Still, other parts of the government have expanded: The workforce at Cabinet-level agencies has increased 9 percent from September 2008: The Department of Veterans Affairs grew the most, 14 percent, followed by Health and Human Services (13 percent), Homeland Security (12 percent), and the Treasury Department (10 percent). At the state and local level, payrolls have been cut by a combined 560,000 since January 2009.

CHANGE IN PERCENT OF TOTAL EMPLOYMENT

All Government ↓ 0.27%

Federal ↑ 0.03%

State ↓ 0.06%

Local ↓ 0.24%

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