Andy Dean Photography /

2016 Federal Pay Tables Are Out

Top senior executives will earn $1,800 more in annual salary next year than they did in 2015.

This story has been updated.

Senior executives will earn between $1,219 and $1,800 more in 2016 than they did in 2015, according to the new SES pay table, effective in January.

For members of the SES under a certified SES performance appraisal system, the maximum annual salary will increase to $185,100 in 2016, up from the current level of $183,300. Senior executives at the maximum SES pay rate who are not under a certified SES performance appraisal system will see their annual salary grow to $170,400 from the 2015 level of $168,700.

At the lowest end of the SES pay spectrum, the salary will increase from $121,956 (with or without a performance appraisal system) to $123,175 in 2016 (with or without a performance appraisal system).

The Office of Personnel Management has published the 2016 pay tables for the various categories of government employees, including those in the SES, the General Schedule, and the Foreign Service. The rates of pay for uniformed service members also are available.

The top GS category – GS-15, Step 10 – will increase to an annual base salary of $133,444 in 2016, up from an annual base of $132,122 in 2015. GS employees also will receive a locality pay boost in 2016 – the first such raise in several years. The exact amount of the increase for all career civilian employees will depend on their locality. Most areas' increases will hover around the 0.3 percent average, but some -- mostly large cities like San Francisco, Calif., and Washington, D.C. -- will receive larger pay bumps.

Members of the SES do not receive locality pay, but are eligible for performance-based awards.

President Obama issued a Dec. 18 executive order implementing a 1.3 percent across the board pay increase for federal employees in 2016. The salary boost is a slight bump from the 1 percent increase civilian government workers received for 2015 and 2014. Before that, a three-year pay freeze had been in effect. The order also implemented a 1.3 percent pay raise for uniformed military service members.

The $1.1 trillion omnibus bill, which funds federal agencies through Sept. 30, 2016, allows for the 1 percent base pay raise for civilian employees that Obama requested, as well as the 0.3 percent bump to their locality pay. The spending package also allows for troops in the military to receive a 1.3 percent pay increase.

The new pay tables also include the 2016 rates of pay for the  judiciary and Congress. Congressional salaries – both rank-and-file and leadership pay – have been frozen for the last several years. Congress last received a pay raise in 2009.

Clarification: An earlier version of this story said the vice president’s salary would increase in 2016. The pay rate of the vice president’s salary as listed in the 2016 table reflects an increase, but because the vice president’s salary has been frozen since 2013, the actual annual amount ($230,700) will not change. However, because “the official statutory rates of pay for the vice president and Executive Schedule positions are used in determining the rate ranges and aggregate pay limitations for employees and pay systems unaffected by the pay freeze, such as GS, SL, ST, and SES positions” according to OPM, the rate in the 2016 pay table for the vice president is listed as $237,700. That would be the vice president’s salary in 2016 if Congress lifted the pay freeze on the office’s salary. Read this OPM memo for more information.

(Image via  /