Tentative Agreement Announced to Give Postal Employees a Pay Raise

The National Association of Letter Carriers recently announced a tentative agreement that would give pay raises and COLAs to a number of Postal employees.

The National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) recently announced the details of a tentative agreement with the Postal Service, pending ratification by union members, that would give a pay raise to career and non-career letter carriers and city carrier assistants (CCAs). The union recommends ratification of the agreement.

NALC said the agreement rewards all letter carriers for “their contributions to the Postal Service’s extraordinary comeback following the Great Recession.”

In its most recent earnings announcement, the Postal Service said that it had posted a net loss of $562 million for the second quarter of the current fiscal year, a marked improvement over the same time period last year in which it reported a net loss of $2 billion. The latest earnings report marks 10 years in a row that the Postal Service has reported net financial losses.

Pay Raises

Letter Carriers

Under the terms of the agreement announced on May 12, career and non-career letter carriers will receive three salary increases as follows:

  • 1.2 percent effective Nov. 26, 2016 to be paid retroactively
  • 1.3 percent effective Nov. 25, 2017
  • Effective Nov. 24, 2018, all Grade 1 letter carriers will be upgraded to Grade 2, resulting in an average wage increase of 2.1 percent for Grade 1 letter carriers across all current wage tables
  • Carrier technicians also will receive a pay increase of 2.1 percent effective Nov. 24, 2018

City Carrier Assistants

For city carrier assistants, additional wage increases of 1 percent will be paid on these three dates for a total of:

  • 2.2 percent on Nov. 26, 2016, also to be paid retroactively
  • 2.3 percent on Nov. 25, 2017
  • an additional 1 percent increase at the time of the upgrade, Nov. 24, 2018; these additional increases will be paid in lieu of cost-of-living adjustments for CCAs

Cost of Living Adjustments (COLA)

Career Letter Carriers

The NALC also announced that COLAs will be paid to all career letter carriers based on changes in the Consumer Price Index (CPI-W) and using the existing COLA formula and the July 2014 CPI as the base month.

The COLA payment schedule is as follows:

  • The first COLA will be $21 annually effective Sept. 3, 2016 and will be paid retroactively
  • The second COLA will be $333 annually effective March 4, 2017, also paid retroactively
  • The third COLA will be effective in September 2017
  • The fourth COLA will be effective in March 2018
  • The fifth COLA will be effective in September 2018
  • The sixth COLA will be effective in March 2019
  • The seventh COLA will be effective in September 2019

Recently Retired Letter Carriers

For recently retired letter carriers, NALC said that those who have retired in the last several months “will receive applicable retroactive general wage increases and COLAs.” NALC also noted that the Office of Personnel Management will make adjustments to their annuities as necessary to reflect the retroactive pay increases.

About the Author

Ian Smith is one of the co-founders of FedSmith.com. He has over 20 years of combined experience in media and government services, having worked at two government contracting firms and an online news and web development company prior to his current role at FedSmith.