Statement on Executive, Legislative, and Judicial Salaries
Nov 9, 1976
GAO reported to Congress in 1974 and 1975 that the quadrennial process for assessing and adjusting salaries of top Federal Officials was failing to meet its objectives. Members of Congress, judges, and presidential appointees had not received a salary increase since 1969, which has had serious adverse effects on recruitment, retention, and incentives for advancement to senior positions throughout the Federal service. Congressional denial of an October 1976 increase imposed a pay ceiling on senior employees. The low level of Federal executive salary rates and the resulting compression of salary rates of other Federal pay systems have distorted pay relationships in all Federal pay systems. The Government must obtain and retain the most capable professional and managerial people to effectively manage Federal programs. It is short-sighted policy to make it difficult for Government to attract and retain the people it needs. Federal officials' salaries are also significantly below those of their nonfederal counterparts. Equitable pay relationships should reflect responsibilities of positions and should take cost-of-living increases into consideration. A related concern is the need for flexibility in pay schedules for individuals at supergrade levels.