Message to the Congress Transmitting Reports Concerning Civilian and Military Pay Increases

November 16, 1981

To the Congress of the United States:

In accordance with the provisions of section 5305 of Title 5 of the United States Code, I hereby report on the pay adjustments I ordered for the Federal statutory pay systems in October 1981.

The Secretary of Labor, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, who serve jointly as my Pay Agent, found that an overall increase of about 15.1 percent in General Schedule rates of pay would be required to achieve comparability with private sector pay as that concept and process are defined in the Pay Comparability Act of 1970. The Advisory Committee on Federal Pay agreed with that finding.

While I fully support the comparability principle as the best basis for determining Federal pay, I believe that significant changes are required in the way that principle is currently defined and implemented. Therefore, last March, the Administration transmitted to the Congress proposed legislation to revise and strengthen the comparability process. At that time, it was estimated that the revised process would result in an overall increase in Federal pay of about 4.8 percent in October 1981.

The reform proposal has not yet been acted upon in Congress, but in accordance with our economic recovery program, the Congress included in the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1981 (Public Law 97 - 35) provisions that limited this October's Federal civilian pay adjustments to the same 4.8 percent. Accordingly, on August 31, 1981, I sent to the Congress an alternative plan which called for an increase of 4.8 percent at each grade. Neither House of Congress disapproved this alternative plan, so on October 15, 1981, I signed Executive Order No. 12330 implementing it.

Under that Executive Order:

-- The scheduled rates of pay under the statutory pay systems (the General Schedule, the Foreign Service Schedule, and the schedules for the Department of Medicine and Surgery of the Veterans' Administration) were increased by 4.8 percent in accordance with the alternative plan.

-- The scheduled rates of pay for the Vice President and the Executive Schedule and Congressional and Judicial salaries were increased, under the provisions of Public Law 94 - 82, by the overall 4.8 percent in rates of pay under the General Schedule.

-- The scheduled rates of pay for the Senior Executive Service were increased under the provisions of section 5382 of Title 5 of the United States Code based on the new rate of pay for GS - 16, step 1, of the General Schedule and the new rate of pay for level IV of the Executive Schedule.

-- The scheduled rates of pay and allowances for members of the Uniformed Services were increased by amounts ranging from 10 percent to 17 percent depending on pay grade in accordance with the provisions of sections 101 and 102 of the Uniformed Services Pay Act of 1981 (Public Law 97 - 60) approved October 14, 1981.

The Order also reflects the effect of section 101(c) of Public Law 97 - 51 (the continuing resolution approved October 1, 1981), which contains limitations on payable salaries for certain top level Government positions.

I am transmitting herewith copies of the reports of my Pay Agent and the Advisory Committee on Federal Pay, the alternative plan, and the Executive Order I promulgated to put these pay adjustments into effect.

Ronald Reagan

The White House,

November 16, 1981.