Public-Private Sector Pay Gap Continues to Grow, But Not As Rapidly

3Dstock/Shutterstock.com

The gap between federal and private-sector pay continued to widen in 2013, according to a new study. Typical federal employees now earn  35.4 percent less than their private sector peers, the Federal Salary Council reported.

The council, made up of union representatives and pay policy experts, used data from the Office of Personnel Management and the Bureau of Labor and Statistics to make its calculations. In 2012, the council found the gap expanded by more than 8 percentage points. This year, the pay gap grew by just 0.8 percentage points.

The pay disparities vary by locality. In the Washington, D.C., area, for example, private-sector workers make 49 percent more than their federal counterparts.

The report conflicts with several other studies -- including those from conservative-leaning think tanks -- that show federal employees earn more than those in the private sector. A 2012 Government Accountability Office study concluded there is no definitive way to measure any potential gap.

Federal employees had their pay frozen for the last three years, though they are likely headed for a 1 percent, across-the-board raise in 2014.

The salary council also recommended creating 12 new localities for pay purposes. Currently, OPM uses 33 metropolitan or state-based distinctions, as well as a 34th “rest of the United States” category. The council suggested the same 12 additions last year, but no changes were enacted. The recommended locality pay areas are: Albany, N.Y.; Albuquerque, N.M.; Austin, Texas; Charlotte, N.C.; Colorado Spring, Colo.; Davenport, Iowa; Harrisburg, Pa.; Laredo, Texas; Las Vegas; Palm Bay, Fla.; St. Louis, Mo.; and Tucson, Ariz.

(Image via 3Dstock/Shutterstock.com)

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by G Suite

    Cross-Agency Teamwork, Anytime and Anywhere

    Dan McCrae, director of IT service delivery division, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

    Download
  • Data-Centric Security vs. Database-Level Security

    Database-level encryption had its origins in the 1990s and early 2000s in response to very basic risks which largely revolved around the theft of servers, backup tapes and other physical-layer assets. As noted in Verizon’s 2014, Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR)1, threats today are far more advanced and dangerous.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.