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Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in House Committees, 2001-2015

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Staff Pay LevelsLevels for Selected Positions in House Committees, 2001-2014

December 15, 20152015 November 9, 2016 (R44322)
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Contents

Summary

The level of pay for congressional staff is a source of recurring questions among Members of Congress, congressional staff, and the public. There may be interest in congressional pay data from multiple perspectives, including assessment of the costs of congressional operations; guidance in setting pay levels for staff in committee offices; or comparison of congressional staff pay levels with those of other federal government pay systems.

This report provides pay data for 11 staff position titles that are used in House committees, and include the following: Chief Counsel; Communications Director; Counsel; Deputy Staff Director; Minority Professional Staff Member; Minority Staff Director; Professional Staff Member; Senior Professional Staff Member; Staff Assistant; Staff Director; and Subcommittee Staff Director.

Tables provide tabular pay data for each House committee staff position. Graphic displays are also included, providing representations of pay from three perspectives, including the following:

  • a line graph showing change in pay, depending on data availability;
  • a comparison at 5-, 10-, and 1415-year intervals from 20142015, depending on data availability, of the cumulative percentage change of pay of that position, to changes in pay of Members of Congress and federal civilian workers paid under the General Schedule in Washington, DC, and surrounding areas; and
  • distributions of 20142015 pay, in $10,000 increments.

In the past five years (2010 and 20142011-2015), the change in median pay, in constant 20152016 dollars, ranged from a 2.0914.96% increase for counsels to a -26.93% decrease for senior professional staff members. Of the 11 staff positions, two saw pay increases while nine saw declinescommunications directors to a -12.24% decrease for subcommittee staff directors. Of the eight staff positions for which data are available, two positions saw pay increases while six saw declines from 2011 to 2015. This may be compared to changes to the pay of Members of Congress, -7.895.10%, and General Schedule, DC, -6.973.19%, over the same period.

Pay data for staff working in Senate committee offices are available in CRS Report R44325, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in Senate Committees, FY2001-FY2014. Data describing the pay of congressional staff working in the personal offices of Senators and Members of the House are available in CRS Report R44324, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in Senators' Offices, FY2001-FY2014, and CRS Report R44323, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in House Member Offices, 2001-2014, respectively.

Information about the duration of staff employment is available in CRS Report R44683, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in House Committees, 2006-2016, CRS Report R44685, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in Senate Committees, 2006-2016, CRS Report R44682, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in House Member Offices, 2006-2016, and CRS Report R44684, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in Senators' Offices, 2006-2016.

Staff Pay Levels

Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in House Committees, 2001-2014
2015

Introduction

Levels of pay for congressional staff are a source of recurring questions among Members of Congress, congressional staff, and the public. In House committees, the chair and ranking Membermember set the terms and conditions of employment for majority and minority staff, respectively. This includes job titles and descriptions; rates of pay, subject to maximum levels;1 and resources available to carry out their official duties.2 There may be interest in congressional pay data from multiple perspectives, including assessment of the costs of congressional operations; guidance in setting pay levels for staff in committee offices; or comparison of congressional staff pay levels with those of other federal government pay systems.

Publicly available information sources do not provide aggregated congressional staff pay data in a readily retrievable form. Pay3 information in this report is based on the House Statement of Disbursements (SOD), published quarterly by the Chief Administrative Officer,4 as collated by LegiStorm, a private entity that provides some congressional data by subscription.5 Data in this report are based on official House reports, which afford the opportunity to use consistently collected data from a single source. Additionally, this report provides annual data, which allows for observations about the nature of House committee staff compensation over time.

This report provides pay data for 11 staff position titles that are used in House committees, and for which sufficient data could be identified. Position titles and the years for which data are available since 2001 are provided in Table 1. Titles were identified through a two-step process. The first step identified 358 job titles used in House committees in 2014. Of those titles, 282, or 78.8%, were filled by only one staff member, and were excluded. In the second step, the remaining 76 titles were assessed to determine how many of the House committees for which data were available6 employed staff with each title. Fifty-nine position titles that were used by six or fewer panels (five for minority positions) were excluded.

Pay data were then collected for the remaining 17 positions. In order to be included, annual pay data for staff in each position needed to be available from at least five committees (four for minority positions). This eliminated another six6 positions, leaving 11. When committees had more than one staff member with the same job title, data for no more than two staff per committee were collected.7 House committee staff had to hold a position with the same job title in the same committee for the entire year examined, and not receive pay from any other congressional employing authority for their data to be included. Every recorded payment ascribed in the LegiStorm data to those staff for the fiscal year is tabulated. Data collected for this report may differ from an employee's stated annual salary due to the inclusion of overtime, bonuses, or other payments8 in addition to base salary paid in the course of a year.

Table 1. House Committee Staff Positions and Availability of Pay Data Since 2001

Position Title

Available Data

Chief Counsel

2002, 2004-2014

2015

Communications Director

2006-2014

2015

Counsel

2001-2014

2015

Deputy Staff Director

2009-2014

2015

Minority Professional Staff Member

2001-2006, 2008-20092010, 2012-2014

Minority Staff Director

2009, 2010, 2012, 2014

-2015

Professional Staff Member

2001-2014

2015

Senior Professional Staff Member

2008-2010, 2012-2014

Staff Assistant

2001-2014

2015

Staff Director

2001-2006, 2008-2014

2015

Subcommittee Staff Director

2001-2006, 2009-2010, 2013-2014

2015

Source: CRS. Available data column provides years in which sufficient data (annual pay data for each position from at least five committees, four for minority positions), were available.

Pay data for staff working in Senate committee offices are available in CRS Report R44325, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in Senate Committees, FY2001-FY2014. Data describing the pay of congressional staff working in the personal offices of Senators and Members of the House are available in CRS Report R44324, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in Senators' Offices, FY2001-FY2014, and CRS Report R44323, Staff Pay Levels for Selected Positions in House Member Offices, 2001-2014, respectively.

9

Data Concerns

Data presented here are subject to some challenges that could affect findings presented or their interpretation. Some of the concerns include the following:

  • Given the large number of positions with titles held by one House employee, data provided here almost certainly do not represent all of the jobs carried out by House committee staff.
  • The manner in which staff titles are assigned might have implications about the representativeness of the data provided. Of positions for which data were collected, two broad categories emerge. The first category identifies position titles that usually apply to one staff member per committee,9 while the.10 Since almost all available data were collected for those positions, pay information provided is likely to be highly representative of what House committees pay staff in those positions. The second category includes positions for which committees might hire two or more staff members.10 Consequently, pay data that include all staff working in that position are likely to be more representative of what House committees pay staff in those positions than positions for which a smaller sample of pay data may have been collected11 Since pay data were collected for no more than two staff per committee for each position, it is more likely that data for those positions are a sample of staff in those positions rather than nearly complete data, and therefore may be less closely representative of what all staff in those positions are paid.
  • Pay data provide no insight into the education, work experience, position tenure, full- or part-time status of staff, or other potential explanations for levels of compensation.
  • Potential differences might exist in the job duties of positions with the same title. Aggregation of pay by job title rests on the assumption that staff with the same title carry out the same or similar tasks. Given the wide discretion congressional employing authorities have in setting the terms and conditions of employment, there may be differences in the duties of similarly titled staff that could have effects on their levels of pay.

Data Tables and Visualizations

Tables in this section provide background information on House pay practices, comparative data for each position, and detailed data and visualizations for each position. Table 2 provides the maximum payable rates for House committee staff since 2001 in both nominal (current) and constant 20152016 dollars.

Constant dollar calculations throughout the report are based on the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U), various years, expressed in constant, 20152016 dollars.11

12

Table 3 provides the available cumulative percentage changes in pay in constant 20152016 dollars for each of the 11 positions, Members of Congress, and federal civilian workers paid under the General Schedule in Washington, DC, and surrounding areas.1213 Table 4- Table 14 provide tabular pay data for each House committee staff position. The numbers of staff whose data were counted are identified as observations in the data tables. Graphic displays are also included, providing representations of pay from three perspectives, including the following:

  • a line graph showing change in pay, depending on data availability, in nominal (current) and constant 20152016 dollars;
  • a comparison at 5-, 10-, and 1415-year intervals from 2014,132015,14 depending on data availability, of the cumulative percentage change of pay for that position, in constant 20152016 dollars, to changes in pay of Members of Congress and federal civilian workers paid under the General Schedule in Washington, DC, and surrounding areas; and
  • distributions of 20142015 pay in 20152016 dollars, in $10,000 increments.

Between 20102011 and 20142015, the change in median1415 pay, in constant 20152016 dollars, ranged from a 2.0914.96% increase for counsels to a -26.93% decrease for senior professional staff members. Of the 11 staff positions, two saw pay increases while ninecommunications directors to a -12.24% decrease for subcommittee staff directors. Of the eight staff positions for which data were available,16 two positions saw pay increases while six saw declines. This may be compared to changes to the pay of Members of Congress, -7.895.10%, and General Schedule, DC, -6.973.19%, over the same period.

Between 20052006 and 20142015, all of the seven staff positions for which data were available in 2005 and 20141517 saw decreases. The change in median pay, in constant 20152016 dollars, ranged from a -10.504.78% decrease for staff directorscounsels to a -26.7231.06% decrease for professional staff members. This may be compared to changes to the pay of Members of Congress, -11.4510.41%, and General Schedule, DC, -0.8013%, over the same period.

Between 2001 and 20142015, all of the sixfive staff positions for which data were available in 2001 and 20141618 saw decreases. The change in median pay, in constant 20152016 dollars, ranged from a -6.739.22% decrease for minority professional staff memberscounsels to a -27.8322.32% decrease for professional staff membersstaff assistants. This may be compared to changes to the pay of Members of Congress, -10.2940%, and General Schedule, DC, 6.427.36%, over the same period.

Table 2. House Committee Staff Pay, Annual Maximums, 2001-2014

2015

$173,785

Year

Nominal $

Constant 20152016 $

2001

$143,600

$191,865

193,614

2002

$148,500

$195,324

197,105

2003

$153,200

$197,016

198,812

2004

$156,600

$196,165

197,953

2005

$160,600

$194,583

196,356

2006

$163,700

$192,140

193,892

2007

$163,700

$186,819

188,522

2008

$167,800

$184,418

186,099

2009

$172,500

$190,260

191,994

2010

$172,500

$187,190

188,896

2011

$172,500

$181,462

183,116

2012

$172,500

$177,783

179,403

2013

$172,500

$175,216

176,813

2014

$172,500

$172,419

173,991

2015

$172,500

Source: 2 U.S.C. 4532 note, CRS calculations. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 3. Selected House Committee Staff Change in Pay, Selected Periods

 

Change

(Based on 2016 constant dollars)
 

5 Years
2010-2014

2011-2015

10 Years
2005-2014

2006-2015

1415 Years
2001-2014

2015

Chief Counsel

-8.233.24%

-11.498.76%

Communications Director

-6.5914.96%

-4.78%

Counsel

2.096.07%

-11.2074%

-14.499.22%

Deputy Staff Director

4.26-7.34%

Minority Professional Staff Member

-14.99%

-11.72%

-6.73%

Minority Staff Director

-10.04%

Professional Staff Member

-5.7512.17%

-26.7231.06%

-17.6722.32%

Senior Professional Staff Member

-26.93%

Staff Assistant

-15.959.77%

-23.3811.54%

-27.8321.57%

Staff Director

-7.895.09%

-10.509.94%

-9.8495%

Subcommittee Staff Director

-12.2924%

-16.2413.31%

-10.6559%

Members of Congress

-7.895.10%

-11.4510.41%

-10.2940%

General Schedule, DC

-6.973.19%

-0.8013%

6.427.36%

Source: CRS calculations, based on data provided in Table 4- Table 14 for congressional positions, CRS Report 97-1011, Salaries of Members of Congress: Recent Actions and Historical Tables, by [author name scrubbed], for Members of Congress, and the Office of Personnel Management for federal civilian workers in the District of Columbia and surrounding areas, various years. "—" indicates no data available. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."

Notes: Insufficient data were available for minority staff directors for 2011. Between 2010 and 2015, change in pay for that position was -8.64%. Insufficient data were available for senior professional staff members for 2011 and 2015. Between 2010 and 2014, change in pay for that position was -26.93%. Insufficient data were available for minority professional staff members for 2011 and 2015. Between 2010 and 2014, change in pay for that position was -14.99%.


Table 4. Chief Counsel, 2002-2014

2015
   

$173,785

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2002

5

6

 

$119,250

$133,741

$133,127

$147,170

 

$156,613

158,281

$175,644

177,515

$174,837

176,699

$193,280

195,340

2003

 

 

2004

6

7

 

$115,500

$141,037

$143,786

$156,600

 

$144,461

146,000

$176,401

178,280

$179,839

181,755

$195,866

197,953

2005

9

10

 

$118,817

$145,037

$150,900

$160,600

 

$143,739

145,270

$175,459

177,329

$182,551

184,496

$194,287

196,356

2006

7

8

 

$131,188

$149,070

$152,250

$161,997

 

$153,745

155,383

$174,703

176,564

$178,429

180,330

$189,852

191,875

2007

5

7

 

$130,099

$150,315

$155,892

$161,997

 

$148,247

149,826

$171,284

173,108

$177,638

179,530

$184,595

186,561

2008

12

14

 

$127,983

$153,277

$154,055

$167,800

 

$140,444

141,940

$168,200

169,992

$169,054

170,855

$184,137

186,099

2009

12

14

 

$136,200

$158,277

$157,449

$172,500

 

$149,994

151,592

$174,307

176,163

$173,396

175,243

$189,971

191,994

2010

11

14

 

$140,111

$160,547

$162,500

$172,500

 

$151,811

153,429

$173,954

175,807

$176,070

177,946

$186,905

188,896

2011

6

7

 

$156,400

$162,890

$160,188

$170,696

 

$164,275

166,025

$171,092

172,915

$168,254

170,046

$179,291

181,201

2012

9

11

 

$139,000

$157,525

$162,673

$170,696

 

$143,039

144,563

$162,102

163,829

$167,400

169,183

$175,656

177,527

2013

7

10

 

$141,961

$159,148

$161,003

$170,696

 

$143,977

145,511

$161,408

163,128

$163,290

165,029

$173,120

174,964

2014

8

10

 

$145,333

$161,897

$161,894

$172,500

 

$145,044

$161,574

$161,572

$172,157

146,589

$163,296

$163,293

$173,991

2015

7

8

$144,201

$162,320

$163,322

$172,500

$145,275

$163,529

$164,538

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-8.233.24%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-11.498.76%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 5. Communications Director, 2006-2014

2015
   

$169,665

-4.78%

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2006

5

5

 

$85,163

$103,872

$111,667

$121,929

 

$99,806

100,869

$121,732

123,029

$130,868

132,262

$142,895

144,417

2007

5

5

 

$85,917

$103,084

$100,069

$126,100

 

$97,902

98,945

$117,464

118,715

$114,029

115,243

$143,690

145,221

2008

12

16

 

$81,515

$113,158

$119,000

$151,921

 

$89,451

90,404

$124,175

125,498

$130,586

131,977

$166,712

168,488

2009

14

16

 

$79,458

$113,739

$106,045

$163,224

 

$87,506

88,438

$125,259

126,593

$116,786

118,030

$179,755

181,670

2010

8

10

 

$83,000

$120,632

$121,446

$149,328

 

$89,931

90,889

$130,705

132,097

$131,587

132,989

$161,798

163,521

2011

8

8

 

$83,667

$107,173

$103,197

$133,889

 

$87,879

88,816

$112,569

113,768

$108,393

109,548

$140,630

142,129

2012

10

10

 

$100,000

$126,218

$120,976

$164,034

 

$102,906

104,002

$129,885

131,269

$124,491

125,817

$168,800

170,599

2013

8

9

 

$104,000

$134,395

$137,700

$168,411

 

$105,477

106,601

$136,303

137,755

$139,655

141,143

$170,802

172,622

2014

13

14

 

$89,000

$128,454

$123,167

$168,411

 

$88,823

$128,198

$122,922

$168,076

89,769

$129,564

$124,231

$169,866

2015

11

11

$95,500

$131,881

$125,003

$168,411

$96,211

$132,863

$125,934

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-6.59%

14.96%                    

10 Years, 2006-2015

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 6. Counsel, 2001-2014

2015
   

$171,967

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

10

16

 

$71,167

$97,784

$98,767

$143,283

 

$94,942

95,953

$130,451

131,841

$131,763

133,167

$191,151

193,187

2002

11

19

 

$65,750

$100,279

$108,000

$143,600

 

$86,350

87,270

$131,698

133,101

$141,838

143,349

$188,592

190,601

2003

9

14

 

$75,388

$104,678

$100,317

$149,467

 

$96,801

97,832

$134,412

135,844

$128,812

130,184

$191,923

193,967

2004

12

19

 

$58,233

$101,021

$99,500

$150,000

 

$72,835

73,611

$126,351

127,697

$124,449

125,774

$187,611

189,610

2005

12

19

 

$79,087

$104,912

$104,880

$134,567

 

$95,675

96,695

$126,918

128,270

$126,879

128,230

$162,793

164,527

2006

13

19

 

$56,250

$111,987

$115,647

$154,083

 

$65,922

66,624

$131,243

132,641

$135,532

136,976

$180,577

182,501

2007

7

14

 

$59,167

$102,363

$96,177

$139,041

 

$67,420

68,138

$116,642

117,885

$109,593

110,760

$158,436

160,124

2008

12

19

 

$64,694

$111,010

$107,136

$147,415

 

$70,993

71,749

$121,818

123,115

$117,567

118,819

$161,767

163,491

2009

13

20

 

$94,261

$123,682

$117,900

$170,696

 

$103,808

104,914

$136,209

137,660

$129,841

131,224

$187,984

189,987

2010

8

15

 

$55,733

$104,700

$101,854

$142,000

 

$60,387

61,031

$113,443

114,652

$110,359

111,535

$153,858

155,497

2011

6

10

 

$79,356

$105,961

$107,371

$130,917

 

$83,351

84,239

$111,296

112,482

$112,777

113,979

$137,509

138,973

2012

10

17

 

$77,000

$108,888

$114,267

$142,050

 

$79,237

80,081

$112,052

113,245

$117,587

118,839

$146,177

147,735

2013

10

16

 

$78,383

$112,593

$115,417

$166,048

 

$79,496

80,343

$114,192

115,408

$117,056

118,303

$168,406

170,200

2014

12

19

 

$49,917

$106,016

$112,895

$159,717

 

$49,817

$105,805

$112,671

$159,400

50,348

$106,932

$113,871

$161,098

2015

15

23

$54,833

$114,886

$120,000

$170,696

$55,242

$115,741

$120,894

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

2.09%

6.07%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-11.20%

-11.74%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1415 Years, 2001-2014

2015

-14.49%

-9.22%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 7. Deputy Staff Director, 2009-2014

2015
   

$173,785

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2009

5

5

 

$136,250

$159,050

$168,139

$172,500

 

$150,049

151,648

$175,158

177,024

$185,168

187,140

$189,971

191,994

2010

5

6

 

$122,500

$145,128

$145,257

$172,500

 

$132,729

134,143

$157,247

158,922

$157,387

159,064

$186,905

188,896

2011

6

6

 

$142,015

$162,374

$169,516

$172,500

 

$149,166

150,755

$170,550

172,366

$178,051

179,948

$181,186

183,116

2012

12

12

 

$140,124

$161,167

$169,206

$172,500

 

$144,195

145,732

$165,850

167,617

$174,122

175,977

$177,512

179,403

2013

8

9

 

$140,100

$158,695

$154,300

$172,500

 

$142,089

143,603

$160,948

162,663

$156,491

158,158

$174,950

176,813

2014

11

12

 

$134,000

$161,029

$164,417

$172,500

 

$133,733

$160,709

$164,090

$172,157

135,158

$162,421

$165,838

$173,991

2015

8

10

$137,500

$160,161

$165,500

$172,500

$138,524

$161,354

$166,732

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

4.26%

-7.34%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 8. Minority Professional Staff Member, 2001-2014

 

Median-2014

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

7

13

 

$73,667

$95,925

$88,827

$139,559

 

$98,277

99,324

$127,971

129,334

$118,503

119,765

$186,182

188,165

2002

7

14

 

$65,267

$106,863

$102,642

$147,170

 

$85,716

86,629

$140,345

141,840

$134,802

136,238

$193,280

195,340

2003

7

13

 

$59,350

$98,384

$97,957

$135,613

 

$76,208

77,020

$126,330

127,675

$125,782

127,122

$174,134

175,989

2004

8

15

 

$64,812

$105,503

$102,333

$155,098

 

$81,063

926

$131,957

133,363

$127,992

129,356

$193,987

196,054

2005

6

11

 

$71,833

$106,447

$103,500

$139,091

 

$86,901

87,826

$128,775

130,147

$125,210

126,543

$168,266

170,058

2006

7

13

 

$71,917

$106,739

$107,044

$144,583

 

$84,283

85,181

$125,093

126,426

$125,450

126,787

$169,444

171,249

2007

 

 

2008

4

7

 

$62,500

$104,167

$109,376

$143,124

 

$68,585

69,316

$114,309

115,527

$120,024

121,303

$157,059

158,732

2009

5

8

 

$59,750

$96,173

$96,467

$127,408

 

$65,801

66,502

$105,913

107,042

$106,237

107,368

$140,312

141,806

2010

4

7

 

$73,667

$115,362

$120,000

$140,000

 

$79,818

80,669

$124,995

126,327

$130,021

131,406

$151,691

153,307

2011

 

 

2012

4

5

 

$67,500

$101,786

$105,085

$143,760

 

$69,461

70,201

$104,743

105,859

$108,138

109,290

$147,937

149,513

2013

5

8

 

$45,117

$90,613

$92,417

$143,591

 

$45,757

46,245

$91,899

92,879

$93,729

94,728

$145,630

147,181

2014

4

6

 

$60,000

$110,397

$110,750

$155,207

 

$59,881

60,519

$110,177

111,351

$110,530

111,707

$154,899

156,549
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

-14.99%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

-11.72%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

145 Years, 20012010-2014

-14.99%

-6.73%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 9. Minority Staff Director, 2009-2014

2015
   

$173,785

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2009

6

6

 

$165,000

$170,597

$172,250

$172,500

 

$181,711

183,647

$187,875

189,877

$189,695

191,716

$189,971

191,994

2010

7

7

 

$169,587

$171,558

$172,500

$172,500

 

$183,749

185,706

$185,884

187,865

$186,905

188,896

$186,905

188,896

2011

 

 

2012

7

7

 

$157,838

$169,602

$172,400

$172,500

 

$162,424

164,154

$174,530

176,390

$177,409

179,299

$177,512

179,403

2013

 

 

2014

8

8

 

$144,712

$166,098

$168,480

$172,500

 

$144,424

$165,767

$168,144

$172,157

145,962

$167,533

$169,936

$173,991

2015

5

5

$165,011

$169,626

$171,300

$172,500

$166,240

$170,889

$172,576

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

56 Years, 2010-2014

2015

-10.04%

-8.64%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 10. Professional Staff Member, 2001-2014

2015
   

$136,005

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

13

24

 

$45,930

$79,533

$80,423

$140,865

 

$61,274

927

$106,103

107,233

$107,291

108,434

$187,925

189,927

2002

15

27

 

$43,000

$81,293

$80,429

$148,500

 

$56,472

57,074

$106,763

107,900

$105,629

106,754

$195,027

197,105

2003

13

25

 

$44,667

$86,645

$91,000

$121,335

 

$57,354

965

$111,256

112,441

$116,848

118,093

$155,800

157,460

2004

16

32

 

$41,083

$90,763

$91,792

$143,211

 

$51,385

932

$113,521

114,730

$114,808

116,031

$179,120

181,028

2005

15

28

 

$42,200

$96,007

$99,635

$138,000

 

$51,052

595

$116,145

117,382

$120,534

121,818

$166,946

168,725

2006

15

29

 

$40,833

$100,719

$103,161

$157,013

 

$47,855

48,364

$118,037

119,295

$120,899

122,187

$184,011

185,972

2007

11

21

 

$44,700

$99,295

$97,657

$136,433

 

$50,935

51,478

$113,146

114,351

$111,279

112,465

$155,465

157,121

2008

13

22

 

$51,250

$96,048

$97,783

$135,000

 

$56,240

839

$105,399

106,522

$107,304

108,447

$148,144

149,722

2009

15

25

 

$47,917

$109,033

$109,000

$172,049

 

$52,770

53,332

$120,076

121,355

$120,039

121,318

$189,474

191,492

2010

14

27

 

$51,868

$89,333

$86,498

$135,762

 

$56,199

798

$96,792

97,824

$93,721

94,720

$147,099

148,666

2011

12

22

 

$49,000

$94,787

$90,344

$142,000

 

$51,467

52,015

$99,559

100,620

$94,893

95,904

$149,150

150,739

2012

16

28

 

$53,000

$96,110

$96,333

$134,083

 

$54,540

55,121

$98,903

99,956

$99,132

100,188

$137,979

139,449

2013

17

29

 

$41,667

$93,765

$92,475

$151,083

 

$42,258

708

$95,096

96,109

$93,788

94,787

$153,229

154,861

2014

16

30

 

$54,000

$89,714

$88,506

$155,000

 

$53,893

$89,535

$88,330

$154,692

54,467

$90,489

$89,271

$156,340

2015

14

26

$53,500

$95,061

$83,611

$135,000

$53,898

$95,769

$84,234

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-5.75%

-12.17%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-26.72%

-31.06%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1415 Years, 2001-2014

2015

-17.67%

-22.32%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 11. Senior Professional Staff Member, 2008-2014

                  Median
 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2008

5

9

 

$101,700

$129,285

$131,875

$153,841

 

$111,602

112,790

$141,873

143,384

$144,714

146,256

$168,819

170,617

2009

5

10

 

$87,028

$141,473

$145,358

$170,696

 

$95,842

96,864

$155,801

157,460

$160,080

161,785

$187,984

189,987

2010

5

9

 

$114,631

$148,295

$145,853

$170,696

 

$124,204

125,527

$160,678

162,390

$158,032

159,716

$184,950

186,921

2011

 

 

2012

7

12

 

$82,000

$133,660

$135,250

$164,000

 

$84,383

85,282

$137,543

139,009

$139,180

140,662

$168,765

170,563

2013

6

9

 

$66,000

$114,418

$125,000

$164,000

 

$66,937

67,650

$116,043

117,279

$126,775

128,126

$166,329

168,101

2014

6

10

 

$73,000

$115,499

$115,708

$164,000

 

$72,855

73,631

$115,269

116,497

$115,478

116,708

$163,674

165,417
 

2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

-26.93%

5 Years, 2010-2014

-26.93%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 12. Staff Assistant, 2001-2014

2015
   

$166,641

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

12

20

 

$25,750

$54,489

$42,111

$124,500

 

$34,352

718

$72,693

73,467

$56,179

778

$166,093

167,862

2002

18

30

 

$24,923

$51,071

$42,187

$123,500

 

$32,732

33,080

$67,073

787

$55,405

995

$162,194

163,922

2003

16

22

 

$28,391

$52,471

$40,867

$128,063

 

$36,455

844

$67,376

68,094

$52,475

53,034

$164,439

166,190

2004

14

26

 

$29,222

$53,364

$39,056

$155,010

 

$36,549

938

$66,745

67,456

$48,849

49,370

$193,878

195,943

2005

13

20

 

$32,416

$54,621

$43,743

$156,848

 

$39,215

633

$66,078

782

$52,919

53,483

$189,748

191,769

2006

14

19

 

$29,417

$59,980

$42,500

$161,997

 

$34,475

842

$70,294

71,042

$49,808

50,338

$189,852

191,875

2007

8

12

 

$36,032

$77,341

$66,239

$161,997

 

$41,058

495

$88,130

89,069

$75,479

76,283

$184,595

186,561

2008

12

18

 

$34,000

$60,085

$55,000

$134,385

 

$37,310

708

$65,935

66,638

$60,355

998

$147,469

149,040

2009

11

15

 

$36,325

$66,030

$50,750

$170,696

 

$40,004

430

$72,717

73,492

$55,890

56,485

$187,984

189,987

2010

16

26

 

$24,750

$53,749

$44,521

$154,039

 

$26,817

27,102

$58,238

858

$48,238

752

$166,902

168,680

2011

7

12

 

$30,000

$63,876

$46,491

$153,000

 

$31,511

846

$67,093

807

$48,832

49,352

$160,704

162,416

2012

14

25

 

$30,000

$49,506

$40,617

$151,534

 

$30,872

31,201

$50,944

51,487

$41,797

42,242

$155,937

157,598

2013

10

15

 

$33,000

$66,141

$50,000

$168,411

 

$33,469

825

$67,080

795

$50,710

51,250

$170,802

172,622

2014

10

11

 

$32,000

$62,975

$40,625

$163,701

 

$31,936

$62,849

$40,544

$163,375

32,277

$63,519

$40,976

$165,116

2015

7

10

$25,938

$62,883

$44,200

$165,409

$26,131

$63,351

$44,529

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-15.95%

-9.77%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-23.38%

-11.54%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1415 Years, 2001-2014

2015

-27.83%

-21.57%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 13. Staff Director, 2001-2014

2015
   

$173,785

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

5

5

 

$109,270

$136,410

$143,133

$143,600

 

$145,774

147,327

$181,981

183,920

$190,951

192,985

$191,573

193,614

2002

9

9

 

$117,755

$143,242

$148,000

$148,500

 

$154,649

156,297

$188,121

190,125

$194,370

196,441

$195,027

197,105

2003

5

5

 

$148,473

$150,769

$150,316

$153,174

 

$190,646

192,677

$193,595

195,658

$193,013

195,070

$196,683

198,778

2004

7

7

 

$129,583

$148,326

$156,417

$156,600

 

$162,075

163,802

$185,517

187,493

$195,637

197,721

$195,866

197,953

2005

8

10

 

$126,000

$150,959

$158,997

$160,600

 

$152,429

154,053

$182,624

184,569

$192,347

194,396

$194,287

196,356

2006

8

10

 

$134,000

$154,948

$162,916

$163,700

 

$157,041

158,714

$181,592

183,526

$190,930

192,964

$191,848

193,892

2007

 

 

2008

9

11

 

$140,791

$164,854

$167,800

$168,217

 

$154,498

156,144

$180,905

182,832

$184,137

186,099

$184,594

186,561

2009

8

9

 

$167,800

$170,758

$171,500

$172,500

 

$184,794

186,763

$188,052

190,055

$188,869

190,881

$189,971

191,994

2010

11

13

 

$168,000

$171,146

$172,500

$172,500

 

$182,029

183,968

$185,438

187,413

$186,905

188,896

$186,905

188,896

2011

8

8

 

$165,006

$170,679

$172,495

$172,500

 

$173,314

175,161

$179,273

181,182

$181,180

183,111

$181,186

183,116

2012

8

10

 

$164,593

$170,575

$172,330

$172,500

 

$169,375

171,180

$175,532

177,402

$177,337

179,226

$177,512

179,403

2013

10

11

 

$145,250

$168,843

$172,500

$172,500

 

$147,313

148,882

$171,241

173,065

$174,950

176,813

$174,950

176,813

2014

12

13

 

$112,833

$165,939

$172,500

$172,500

 

$112,609

$165,608

$172,157

$172,157

113,809

$167,373

$173,991

$173,991

2015

10

13

$135,000

$167,383

$172,500

$172,500

$136,005

$168,630

$173,785

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-7.89%

-5.09%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-10.50%

-9.94%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1415 Years, 2001-2014

2015

-9.84%

-9.95%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."


Table 14. Subcommittee Staff Director, 2001-2014

2015
   

$171,954

 

 

 

 

Nominal $

 

Constant $

Year

Committees

Observations

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

 

Minimum

Average

Median

Maximum

2001

5

8

 

$64,694

$108,922

$115,331

$134,891

 

$86,307

87,227

$145,310

146,858

$153,860

155,499

$179,955

181,872

2002

9

16

 

$68,250

$112,430

$116,733

$134,905

 

$89,634

90,588

$147,656

149,229

$153,307

154,940

$177,172

179,060

2003

7

13

 

$70,783

$127,704

$131,417

$151,358

 

$90,889

91,858

$163,978

165,724

$168,745

170,543

$194,351

196,421

2004

8

16

 

$77,583

$125,937

$129,966

$147,947

 

$97,037

98,070

$157,514

159,192

$162,554

164,285

$185,044

187,015

2005

8

12

 

$82,761

$135,548

$135,667

$158,954

 

$100,121

101,187

$163,980

165,727

$164,123

165,872

$192,296

194,344

2006

8

14

 

$91,761

$138,231

$135,406

$161,745

 

$107,539

108,685

$162,000

163,726

$158,689

160,380

$189,557

191,577

2007

 

 

2008

 

 

2009

6

10

 

$105,198

$141,675

$144,957

$170,696

 

$115,852

117,086

$156,024

157,686

$159,638

161,338

$187,984

189,987

2010

10

16

 

$98,293

$144,215

$144,661

$170,499

 

$106,501

107,636

$156,257

157,922

$156,741

158,411

$184,737

186,705

2011

 

 

2012

 

 

2013

6

11

 

$105,000

$143,609

$151,838

$170,696

 

$106,491

107,625

$145,648

147,199

$153,994

155,635

$173,120

174,964

2014

6

12

 

$102,395

$141,386

$137,750

$168,411

 

$102,191

103,280

$142,608

$141,105

138,941

$137,476

$168,076

169,866

2015

5

9

$110,000

$138,476

$138,000

$170,683

$110,819

$139,508

$139,028

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Change

5 Years, 2010-2014

2011-2015

-12.29%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 Years, 2005-2014

2006-2015

-16.24%

-13.31%
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1415 Years, 2001-2014

2015

-10.65%

-10.59%

Median Pay

Change in Pay

2014 Distribution of Pay

2015 Pay Distribution

Dollars in figures are in thousands.

Source: Statement of Disbursements of the House, as collated by LegiStorm, various years, and CRS calculations. "—" indicates insufficient data available. Tabular change is based on change in median pay for the periods noted. In the visualizations, position pay information based on constant 20152016 dollars in thousands of dollars, or change in those levels, is presented in green. Detailed information about data sources is available above in "Data Tables and Visualizations."

Author Contact Information

[author name scrubbed], Coordinator, Specialist in American National Government ([email address scrubbed], [phone number scrubbed])
[author name scrubbed], Research Assistant ([email address scrubbed], [phone number scrubbed])

Acknowledgments

Jacobo Licona and Brian Hamel, former CRS interns, collected data for this report[author name scrubbed], Research Assistant, provided update support. Jacobo Licona, Brian Hamel, Joe Wisniewski, and Claire Laurence, former CRS interns, collected data for this report. [author name scrubbed], Visual Information Specialist, created the visualizations for this report. Claudia Guidi and Sandra L. Edwards, User Support Specialists, and Alex Marine, Publications Editor, provided formatting and editorial support.

Footnotes

Positions that typically employ one staff member per committee include communications director, deputy staff director, minority staff director, and staff director.

Sufficient data are not available in 2006 for deputy staff directors, minority staff directors, and senior professional staff members.

1.

Since 2009, the maximum annual pay for staff in House committees has been $172,500. See Order of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, January 9, 2009, set out as a note following 2 U.S.C. 4532. Maximum payable rates for House committee staff since 2001 are available in Table 2.

2.

For discussion of resources available to committees, and their distribution, see CRS Report R42778, House Committee Funding: Description of Process and Analysis of Disbursements, by [author name scrubbed] and [author name scrubbed].

3.

In this report, pay refers to monies paid by the House to staff, and excludes other components of total compensation, which might include paid leave or employer contributions to various insurance and retirement benefits.

4.

Volumes of the Statement of Disbursements since July 2009 are available at http://disbursements.house.gov/.

5.

http://www.legistorm.com/.

6.

The Statements of Disbursement of the House provided data for the following panels in 20142015: Agriculture, Appropriations, Armed Services, Budget, Education and the Workforce, Energy and Commerce, Ethics, Financial Services, Foreign Affairs, Homeland Security, House Administration, Intelligence, Judiciary, Natural Resources, Oversight and Government Reform, Rules, Science, Space and Technology, Small Business, Transportation and Infrastructure, Veterans' Affairs, and Ways and Means.

7.

The numbers of staff whose data were counted are identified as observations in the data tables.

8.

Other forms of payment do not appear to be recorded in a consistent manner. Sometimes overtime and other pay is listed as separate entries and in other instances, significant one-time changes in a quarterly total may suggest payments in addition to regular salary.

9.

Information about the duration of staff employment is available in CRS Report R44683, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in House Committees, 2006-2016, CRS Report R44685, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in Senate Committees, 2006-2016, CRS Report R44682, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in House Member Offices, 2006-2016, and CRS Report R44684, Staff Tenure in Selected Positions in Senators' Offices, 2006-2016.

10.
1011.

Positions that typically employ two or more staff members per committee include counsel, staff assistant, and professional staff member.

1112.

U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Price Index, at http://www.bls.gov/cpi/tables.htm.

1213.

General Schedule pay change is based on changes in pay levels, and not the pay of individuals. General Schedule pay tables are available at https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/pay-leave/salaries-wages/2015/general-schedule/. For a complete description of areas covered under the Washington-Baltimore-Northern Virginia, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA locality pay table, see http://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/pay-leave/salaries-wages/2014/locality-pay-area-definitions/#w.

1314.

5 years, 2010-20142011-2015; 10 years, 2005-20142006-2015; and 1415 years, 2001-20142015.

1415.

The median is the midpoint at which half of the numbers in a list are higher and the other half lower.

1516.

Sufficient data are not available in 2005 for communications directors, 2011 for minority staff directors, senior professional staff members, and subcommittee staff directors.

17.
1618.

Sufficient data are not available in 2001 for chief counsels, communications directors, deputy staff directors, minority staff directors, and senior professional staff members.

Sufficient data are not available in 2015 for minority professional staff members.