To the Congress of the United States:
In accordance with the provisions of section 5305 of title 5, United States Code, I hereby report on the comparability adjustment I have ordered for the Federal statutory pay systems in January 1973.
The American system of career civil service is based on the principle of rewarding merit. As President I have a special appreciation of the contribution that the service makes to our Nation, and I am pledged to continue striving to make it an even more effective, responsive part of our Government. One way of achieving this is to maintain a salary scale for civil servants that is just and comparable to that received by equivalent individuals in the private sector.
The adjustment I have ordered is based on recommendations submitted to me by the Director of the Office of Management and Budget and the Chairman of the Civil Service Commission, who serve jointly as my "agent" for Federal pay. Their report, which is enclosed, compares Federal salaries with average private enterprise salaries as shown in the 1972 National Survey of Professional, Administrative, Technical, and Clerical Pay, and recommends a 5. 14 percent increase in Federal salaries in order to achieve comparability with the private sector.
The report of the Advisory Committee on Federal Pay, which I appointed under the provisions of section 5306 of title 5, is also enclosed. The Advisory Committee generally agreed with the recommendations of the Director of OMB and the Chairman of the Civil Service Commission and endorsed their plans for studies and further refinements in the pay comparison process. However, the Advisory Committee also recommended that in addition to the 5.14 percent increase, an extra pay adjustment of approximately .36 percent be granted to make up for the three-month delay of this pay adjustment that was necessitated this year by the Economic Stabilization Act Amendments of 1971. Since such an increase would result in paying Federal employees higher salaries than comparable private enterprise employees as shown by the annual Bureau of Labor Statistics Survey, I have concluded that such additional increase would be neither fair nor justifiable.
Also transmitted is a copy of an Executive order promulgating the adjustments of statutory salary rates to become effective on the first day of the first pay period beginning on or after January 1, 1973.
Concurrent with the issuance of this Executive order adjusting pay for civil servants, I have also signed an Executive order providing a pay increase of 6.69 percent in the basic pay of members of our uniformed services. This Executive order complies with section 8 of Public Law 90-207 (81 Stat. 654), which provides that whenever the rates of the General Schedule of compensation for Federal classified employees are adjusted upwards, there shall immediately be placed into effect a comparable upward adjustment in the basic pay of members of the uniformed services.