President Biden has confirmed via executive order (EO) that 2023 General Schedule (GS) pay scales will rise by an average of 4.6%. This is the highest increase in nearly two decades.
For the locality of ” LOS ANGELES-LONG BEACH, CA” (LA area) the latest GS pay scale table is shown below, which incorporates the 4.1% GS base pay increase and locality payment adjustment of 34.89%.
This brings the total pay increase for this geography to 5.10%. This is 0.5% above the average 2023 GS pay raise. The updated GS pay table for the this locality is shown below.
The pay adjustments above will take place from the first pay period beginning on or after Jan 4, 2023, which is Jan 15, 2023 for the biweekly pay period cycle.
What is the General Schedule (GS) and Locality Pay
The General Schedule (GS) is a system used by the federal government to classify and pay its employees. The GS system has 15 grades, ranging from GS-1 (the lowest) to GS-15 (the highest), and within each grade are steps ranging from 1 to 10, worth approximately 3% of the salary.
Each job is classified based on the level of difficulty, responsibility, and qualifications required. E.g. GS-2 and GS-3 are for entry level positions while GS-9 and GS-10 are for those with master’s degrees.
The base pay for employees on the GS are adjusted across-the-board annually in January (final figures are determined a week or two before the end of the year) to reflect nationwide changes in private sector wages.
Most GS employees are also eligible for locality pay, covering 55 geographic areas, which is based on surveys of pay levels for non-federal workers in a specific geographic area.
The President and Congress may make changes to the across-the-board and locality pay adjustments via executive order.