The Foreign Service and a New Worldwide Compensation System
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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The George W. Bush Administration seeks to change the federal personnel system, which it characterizes as a one-size fits all, longevity-based personnel and pay system, to what it describes as a market sensitive, performance-based pay system. Removing federal employees at the Departments of Defense and of Homeland Security from the General Schedule GS to separate performance-based systems was the first major step taken and, if fully implemented, will cover more than half of all non-uniformed federal employees. The Administration also sent to the House and the Senate the Working for America Act WFAA, as a model for legislation to create a new Federal Schedule for the remaining federal civil service employees. To date, WFAA has not been introduced as legislation. In this same vein, Congress is currently considering two bills, H.R. 6060 and S. 3925, that would allow the Administration to establish a new Foreign Service performance-based compensation schedule. These bills also eliminate the current pay difference between being posted abroad and being posted in the continental United States for those members of the Foreign Service at the upper mid-level rank of 01 and below. Currently the difference in pay levels between service abroad and service in Washington, DC is over 17. In 2005, because the Senior Foreign Service personnel system was converted to a performance-based system, the members of the Senior Foreign Service are paid at the Washington, DC, level regardless of their postings.
- Economics and Cost Analysis