Administration limits performance award spending

The Obama administration has announced limits on the total amount agencies can spend on individual performance awards for federal employees.
 
Under the new guidelines, the total amount an agency may spend on individual performance awards for members of its Senior Executive Service and senior-level and scientific and professional employees may be no more than 5 percent of their aggregate salaries. Performance awards and individual contribution awards for all other employees may not total more than 1 percent of their aggregate salaries.

The details were laid out in a memo issued to department heads June 10 by Office of Personnel Management Director John Berry and Office of Management and Budget Deputy Director for Management and Chief Performance Officer Jeffrey Zients.

The memo said the spending limits apply immediately, and will remain in effect for awards with effective dates during fiscal 2012. The memo noted that while the award limits will require a reduction from current award spending levels at some agencies, other agencies that are “already spending at or below these levels must continue to limit spending to their fiscal year 2010 levels.”

“The budgetary limits specified in this memorandum apply to spending for individual awards only, which include rating-based performance awards and individual special act awards,” the memo states. “Other awards and incentives are frozen at fiscal year 2010 spending levels, except travel savings and foreign language awards.”

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