Beth Cobert, acting director of the Office of Personnel Management, has approved a 1 percent rise in all title 5 pay tables for special rates, an increase similar to that of General Schedule base rates.
Cobert wrote in a memorandum issued Tuesday that the increase in both special rates and base rates for GS employees will take effect on Jan. 8 as per the standard payroll cycle.
Approximately 40,000 employees are covered by the special rates, according to the memo.
She said in an August data call memorandum for OPM’s annual evaluation of special rates that Obama’s fiscal year 2017 budget proposed a 1.6 percent increase in total basic payroll.
However, the president reduced the proposed 2017 increase in GS base rates to 1 percent through his alternative plan for pay increases for civilian federal employees issued on Aug. 31.
OPM will also implement a 1 percent special rates increase in non-foreign areas that will also include “additional adjustments” based on the Nonforeign Area Retirement Equity Assurance Act of 2009.
Cobert noted that some GS-14 and GS-15 special rates will be capped in 2017 since the special rate for level IV of the Executive Schedule will be raised to $161,900 in the coming year.
“Certain special rate tables will terminate effective January 8, 2017, because higher locality rates apply at all steps of each covered grade,” she added.