Order Code 98-53 GOV
Updated June 25, 2004
CRS Report for Congress
Received through the CRS Web
Salaries of Federal Officials: A Fact Sheet
Sharon S. Gressle
Specialist in American National Government
Government and Finance Division
The Ethics Reform Act of 1989 provides for an annual salary adjustment for all
positions on the Executive Schedule as well as for Members and leaders of the Senate and
the House of Representatives (103 Stat. 1716, at 1769). Adjustments are based on the
percent of change in the private sector wages and salaries element of the Employment
Cost Index (ECI) minus 0.5%. They are to go into effect at the same time as, and at a rate
no greater than, the basic pay rate adjustments for the General Schedule (GS). By law (95
Stat. 1183, at 1200), judges’ salaries must be authorized separately.
1994. Congress legislated a freeze on the salaries of Members of Congress for
calendar year 1994. With no GS base salary adjustment, there was no “automatic”
adjustment in 1994 for officials in the three branches (107 Stat. 35 and 107 Stat. 1253).
1995. Projected adjustment: 2.6%. The FY1995 Treasury Appropriations Act
provided that there would be no adjustment for federal officials (108 Stat. 2328, at 2424).
1996. Projected adjustment: 2.3%. The FY1996 Treasury Appropriations Act
provided that there would be no adjustment for federal officials (109 Stat. 468, at 507).
1997. Projected adjustment: 2.3%. The FY1997 Treasury Appropriations Act
provided that there would be no adjustment for federal officials (110 Stat. 3009-364).
1998. Adjustment: 2.3%, a rate equal to the January 1998 adjustment for GS base
pay. No legislation was enacted to withhold the pay adjustment for federal officials.
1999. Projected adjustment: 3.1%. The FY1999 Treasury Appropriations Act
provided that there would be no adjustment for federal officials (112 Stat. 2681-58).
2000. Adjustment: 3.4%. (P.L. 106-113 authorized judicial pay adjustment.)
2001. Adjustment: 2.7%. Projected 3.0% adjustment limited by GS base pay rate.
P.L. 106-553 authorized the judicial salary adjustment.
2002. Adjustment: 3.4%. (P.L. 107-77 authorized the judicial salary adjustment.)
2003. Adjustment: 3.1%. Projected 3.3% adjustment limited by GS base pay rate.
Judicial adjustment authorized through P.L. 108-6.
2004. Adjustment: 2.2%. Adjusted, temporarily, at 1.5% pending enactment of P.L.
108-99. Judicial pay adjustment authorized under P.L. 108-167 (12/06/03).
2005. Projected adjustment: 2.5%
Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress
Table 1. Salaries of Federal Officials
Vice President of the United States (President of the Senate)
Speaker of the House of Representatives
President Pro Tempore of the Senate
Majority and Minority Leaders — House and Senate
Senators, Representatives, Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico,
Chief Justice of the United States
Associate Justices of the Supreme Court
Judges, U.S. Courts of Appeal
Judges, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces
Judges, U.S. District Courts
Judges, United States Claims Court
Judges, Court of International Trade
Judges, Tax Court of the United States
President of the United States a
Level I: Cabinet-level officials
Level II: Deputy secretaries of departments, secretaries of
military departments, & heads of major agencies
Level III: Under secretaries of departments & heads of middlelevel agencies
Level IV: Assistant secretaries & general counsels of
departments, heads of minor agencies, members of certain boards
Level V: Administrators, commissioners, directors, & members
of boards, commissions, or units of agencies
Senior Executive Service (SES) Basic Pay Range Effective January 2004 b
Agencies without a certified performance appraisal system
Agencies with a certified performance appraisal system
a. Effective noon, January 20, 2001.
b. Pursuant to P.L. 108-136, §1125, the pay system for SES was changed to a system in which the agency
head determines the salary rate for each individual once a year. See 69 Federal Register 2048-2052
for interim regulations. The range includes a maximum rate equal to Level II when OPM, as directed
by P.L. 107-296, certifies that the agency has an appropriate performance appraisal system in place.