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Pay & Leave

Federal Grade Levels

The Federal General Schedule (GS) grades classification and pay system is a worldwide pay system that covers more than 1.5 million employees. The GS pay schedule has 15 grades and 10 steps in each grade covering more than 400 occupations in professional, technical, administrative, and clerical positions.

Salaries & Wages

Salaries and wages vary by geographic location. Each grade has 10 step rates (steps 1-10) that are each worth approximately 3 percent of the employee’s salary. The Office of Personnel Management provides additional information on salaries and wages, locality pay, and salary pay tables.

Emergency Dismissal/Closures

OPM’s Dismissal Procedures apply in situations that prevent significant numbers of employees in the Washington, DC area from reporting for work on time or which require agencies to close all or part of their activities, including emergency situations and major disasters, adverse weather conditions, natural disasters, and other incidents causing disruptions of Government operations.


The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) provides Government-wide leadership on Federal leave policies and programs on the administration of leave, including the Family and Medical Leave Act, family-friendly leave policies, Federal leave sharing programs, annual leave, sick leave, and time off for special circumstances--e.g., early dismissal or closure for weather emergencies. However, each Federal agency is responsible for administering leave policies and programs for its own employees.

Leave Donor/Leave Transfer

An employee may donate annual leave directly to another Federal employee who has a personal or family medical emergency and who has exhausted his or her available paid leave. A potential leave recipient's employing agency must determine that a full-time employee's absence from duty without available paid leave because of the medical emergency is (or is expected to be) at least 24 hours. Learn more about leave donor and leave transfers.