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Pay Freeze for Certain Senior Political Officials

Tuesday, January 10, 2017
CPM 2017-02
Pay Freeze for Certain Senior Political Officials

On December 27, 2016, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management issued guidance on the January 2017 pay adjustments that included information on the pay freeze that applies to certain senior political officials. (See section entitled “Pay Freeze for Certain Senior Political Officials” in CPM 2016-20 at  This memorandum provides additional guidance to assist agencies in applying the pay freeze provisions to new senior political appointees.


Section 101 of the Further Continuing and Security Assistance Appropriations Act, 2017 (Public Law 114-254,  December 10, 2016) provides continuing appropriations to Federal agencies through April 28, 2017, or the date of enactment of specified appropriations legislation.  Under this continuing resolution, the authority and conditions provided in Fiscal Year 2016 appropriations laws continue to apply.  This language means that the freeze on the payable pay rates for certain senior political appointees at 2013 levels—as provided in section 738 of division E of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016, Public Law 114-113, December 18, 2015—continues into calendar year 2017.  This freeze not only bars salary increases (except as allowed under certain narrow exceptions), but also requires that persons who are newly appointed to a covered position must have the initial salary rate set in accordance with 2013 rates and limitations. 


The summary and detailed guidance attached to this memorandum provide information on the employees covered by the senior political appointee pay freeze, the rates of pay affected, and exceptions to the pay freeze.   Please note that the attached detailed guidance is an update of the original guidance provided in CPM 2014-03 at




Agency headquarters-level human resources offices may contact OPM at  Employees should contact their agency human resources offices for assistance.


cc:        Chief Human Capital Officers, and Deputy Chief Human Capital Officers


Attachments (see 508-compliant PDFs below)