Locating Your Salary for 2015: Updated Pay Tables

By on December 20, 2014 in Pay & Benefits with 76 Comments

As we get ready to enter the new year, the pay rates for 2015 have been finalized for federal workers. To locate the amount you will be paid under the General Schedule system for 2015, just go to the Pay Calculator at FedsDataCenter.com to find out your new pay rate. The updated pay tables also include the amount for locality pay rates in various metropolitan areas.

As we explained in the article on New Locality Pay Areas? Not in 2015, there are no additional locality pay areas established for 2015.

The Pay Calculator is quick and easy to use:

  • Just select your locality (or the one called “Rest of U.S. if you are not in a locality pay area)
  • Select your GS grade
  • Select your step within that grade.
  • Click on “Calculate Pay Rate” to see your 2015 pay amount.

Here is a sample of how the page will look after you have made your selections:

Image showing example usage of the GS Pay Calculator from FedsDataCenter.com

In this instance, the calculator reflects the pay for a GS-14, step 6 in the Washington, DC area.

The finishing touch on the 2015 pay amounts came on December 19, 2014 when the president issued an executive order reflecting the 1% across-the-board pay raise for federal employees next year (2015).

Here is a quick summary of how the pay raise will impact several different groups of federal employees.

Executive Schedule

Executive Schedule (EX) rates of pay will be increased by 1 percent (rounded to the nearest $100).

Senior Executive Service (SES)

The minimum rate of basic pay for the Senior Executive Service (SES) rate range will be adjusted to be consistent with the increase in the minimum rate of basic pay for senior-level positions ($121,956 in 2015). The maximum rate of basic pay for the SES will be $183,300 (EX-II) for SES members covered by a certified SES performance appraisal system and $168,700 (EX-III) for SES members covered by an SES performance appraisal system that has not been certified. An SES member at the minimum rate of the SES rate range must receive a pay increase of 1 percent in January 2015, since an SES member may not receive less than the minimum rate of the SES rate range.

Senior-Level (SL) and Scientific and Professional Positions (ST)

The minimum rate of basic pay for the senior-level (SL) and scientific and professional (ST) rate range will be increased by 1 percent ($121,956 in 2015). The maximum rate of basic pay will be $183,300 (EX-II) for SL or ST employees covered by a certified SL/ST performance appraisal system and $168,700 (EXIII) for SL or ST employees covered by an SL/ST performance appraisal system that has not been certified. An SL or ST employee at the minimum rate of the SL/ST rate range must receive a pay increase of 1 percent in January 2015, since an SL or ST employee may not receive less than the minimum rate of the SL/ST rate range.

Administrative Law Judges

The Executive order reflects a decision by the President to increase the rates of basic pay for administrative law judges (ALJs) by 1 percent, rounded to the nearest $100. The rate of basic pay for AL-1 will be $158,700 (equivalent to the rate for EX-IV). The rate of basic pay for AL-2 will be $154,800. The rates of basic pay for AL-3/A through 3/F will range from $105,900 to $146,600.

Administrative Appeals Judges

The rates of basic pay for administrative appeals judge (AAJ) positions must be set at a rate not less than the minimum rate of basic pay for level AL-3 and not more than the maximum rate of basic pay for level AL-3 of the ALJ pay system.

Locality Payments

The 2015 locality pay percentages are the same as the percentages that applied in 2014. (See pay calculator at FedsDataCenter.com)

By law, EX officials, SES members, employees in SL/ST positions, and employees in certain other equivalent pay systems are not authorized to receive locality payments. (Note: An exception applies to certain grandfathered SES, SL, and ST employees stationed in a nonforeign area on January 2, 2010.) The locality pay percentages continued for non-GS employees have not been increased in 2015.

Many federal employees had hoped for a larger pay increase in 2015. In a survey from March 2014, about 41% of readers responding to the survey thought that a raise of 4% would be fair. Another 30% thought that a raise of 3.3% would be fair. Most readers were realistic though and, when asked what they thought the actual pay raise would be in 2015, about 44% thought the president would actually propose a raise of 1%. That, of course, is what was proposed by President Obama and that is eventually what has come to pass.

© 2016 Ralph R. Smith. All rights reserved. This article may not be reproduced without express written consent from Ralph R. Smith.

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About the Author

Ralph Smith has several decades of experience working with federal human resources issues. He has written extensively on a full range of human resources topics in books and newsletters and is a co-founder of two companies and several newsletters on federal human resources.

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