Cost Comparison of House of Representatives Page System Versus Regular Messenger Employees

GGD-83-108: Published: Sep 30, 1983. Publicly Released: Oct 11, 1983.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO compared the cost of the present page system in the House of Representatives to the alternative cost of hiring messengers.

GAO found that the cost of the page system, including the provision of classroom education and dormitory supervision for the pages, was only slightly less than the first year cost of salaries and benefits of the same number of messengers. However, should individual messengers stay in their jobs over a year, which would qualify them for longevity step increases on the House salary scale, the cost of the salaried messenger system would increase faster than the cost of the current page system. Because the page's tenure is limited by statute to 1 year, pages would not qualify for longevity step increases.

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