Obama executive order makes 1% pay raise for feds a reality

Monday - 12/23/2013, 4:19pm EST

President Barack Obama signed an executive order Monday making a 1 percent across-the-board pay raise for government employees a reality and ending a three-year federal pay freeze.

The President included the pay raise in his 2014 budget proposal.

The 1 percent increase will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2014. It applies to statutory pay systems and keeps locality percentages at 2013 levels. The Office of Personnel Management posted the 2014 General Schedule Locality Pay Tables on its website.

The minimum basic pay for members of the Senior Executive Service will be adjusted so that it will be consistent with the pay increase for senior-level positions.

"An SES member at the minimum rate of the SES rate range must receive a pay increase of 1 percent in January 2014, since an SES member may not receive less than the minimum rate of the SES rate range," said OPM Director Katherine Archuleta, in a memorandum to the heads of executive departments and agencies.

OPM posted 2014 salary tables on its website.

Cost-of-living allowances and locality percentages for federal employees in nonforeign areas will stay at 2012 levels.

The 1 percent increase also applies to individuals in the senior-level and scientific and professional rate range; administrative law judges; and administrative appeals judges.

"Today's announcement by the President provides much-needed relief for America's hard-working, middle-class federal employees whose paychecks have been frozen while the cost of gas, groceries and housing has increased," said Joseph A. Beaudoin, president of the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association, in a statement. "As the pay gap between private- and public- sector workers has grown, ending the three-year pay freeze for public workers is an important investment in maintaining the strength of the federal workforce."

Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee, praised the first cost-of-living adjustment federal employees have had in four years.

"This long-overdue modest pay raise for federal government employees is a good step in recognizing the value of federal workers," she said, in a statement. "They have been the targets of unending attacks. They've been furloughed, laid off and locked out through no fault of their own. I believe federal employees should never be scapegoats in fights over deficit reduction."

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