1.6 Percent Pay Raise for 2017 to be Proposed

The president’s budget proposal for 2017 is expected to include a 1.6% federal pay raise for federal GS employees. The budget may be released as early as next week.

The 2017 federal budget proposal from the administration will include a proposal for a 1.6 percent pay raise for federal employees next year for general schedule (GS employees). Most details will not be known until later. The budget proposal may be released as early as next week.

Those who pay attention to the arcane method of determining an overall pay raise for federal employees will recall that for the past two years, the amount requested by the administration has ultimately come to fruition. That could change for 2017, of course, as Congress can and often does get involved directly in the final amount of any pay raise that is finally approved for the next year.

We also do not know if the 1.6 percent will be an average that will include locality pay. That is what happened for 2016. The final amount of the locality pay increase was not known until late in the year. In all likelihood, the same timing will occur for a 2017 pay raise. (See President Releases Fed Employee Pay Plan and Locality Pay Rates for 2016)

According to the Washington Post, the president will also again propose six weeks of paid parental leave for federal employees.

Chances are, the president’s proposal will not assuage federal employee unions who have not been happy with pay raises under the Obama administration, particularly after a base rate pay freeze that lasted for three years. On the other hand, many employees would probably be happy to see a pay raise that is at least a little higher than the 1.3 percent average given in 2016.

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. Follow Ralph on Twitter: @RalphSmith47