Release: 4637-02
For Release: May 3, 2002


Washington, D.C.—Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) Chairman James E. Newsome expressed profound appreciation to the House and Senate conferees for including a “pay parity” provision for the CFTC in the six-year farm bill that was passed by the House this week and is expected to be voted on by the Senate next week. This provision will permit the CFTC, as a member of the President’s Working Group on Financial Markets, to compensate its employees at a level comparable to other federal financial regulatory agencies.

In commenting on this action, Chairman Newsome said, “Pay parity for CFTC staff has been a top priority for me and my fellow Commissioners since I joined the Commission. The need to attract and retain experienced, talented, and dedicated employees is critical to the CFTC in fulfilling its responsibilities to the futures and option markets the agency oversees and to the American people who depend on them.” Continuing, Chairman Newsome said, “Under bipartisan leadership, action was taken that will permit the CFTC to deal with its staffing crisis in a meaningful manner and on a long term basis. I wish to express my immense gratitude to Congressman Saxby Chambliss, Chairman, Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management, for his leadership and vision on this issue. I also wish to thank my fellow Commissioners, Barbara Holum and, Tom Erickson for their steadfast support of pay parity for the CFTC. The ultimate beneficiaries of today’s action will be the American public.” Commissioner Tom Erickson said “The CFTC has a tradition of attracting a highly qualified and dedicated staff. I am therefore extremely pleased and grateful that Congress recognized this inequity and approved pay parity for Commission employees.” Commissioner Barbara Holum said “It has been a longstanding concern of hers, and that she was very pleased to learn of its inclusion in the legislation.”