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Senate Staff Employment Data: 1991-2001

The  Senate Salary, Tenure & Demographic Data: 1991-2001 (206KB) is a compilation of six reports produced by the Congressional Management Foundation. To compile and analyze this data, CMF surveyed Senate offices in every odd year during this timeframe. Any data or information excerpted from this report must be attributed to the Congressional Management Foundation. Please contact us with any questions.

The key findings are:

  • Pay Gap Between Senate Staff and Federal Employees: The gap between the pay of DC-based Senate staff and executive branch staff has nearly doubled in the last decade, with Senate staff now earning about two-thirds of federal government employees. The average Senate staff member earned 18% less than an executive branch employee in 1991 – that gap increased to 32% in 2001. (See table 1 below).
  • Tenure of Senate Staff: Tenure of DC-based Senate staff has decreased during the last decade. The time an average Senate staff member remains in his or her position has dropped 29% to 2.2 years; the average time the staff remain in the same office has dropped 21% to 3.1 years; and the average time staff remain in Congress dropped 12% to 5.0 years. (See tables 2,3,4 below).
  • Women in Executive Positions: Women hold a greater percentage of executive positions in the Senate than in the federal government or major U.S. companies. Women now account for 41.6% of executive positions in the Senate; 25.2% in the federal government; and 12.5% in Fortune 500 companies. The growth of women in these positions rose by 4.7 percentage points in the last two years.
  • Pay Gap Between Men and Women Senate Staff: The gap between pay for men and women in the Senate continues to narrow. Women on average earn 84% of the pay of men in the Senate; while women in the private sector earn 65% of the pay of men.
  • Minority Hiring: The percentage of minorities working in the Senate has remained unchanged in the last 10 years (14.5%). However, the percentage of blacks in executive positions rose from 1.5% in 1993 to 3.1% in 2001.

Table #1 - DC-Based Senate versus Federal Government Pay

Year DC-Based Senate DC-Based Federal Gap
2001 $49,236 $64,969 32%
1999 $45,223 $59,745 32%
1997 $42,343 $56,191 33%
1995 $39,414 $51,376 30%
1993 $38,971 $46,783 20%
1991 $35,802 $42,413 18%

 

Table #2 - Tenure in Current Position (in years)

Year Total Washington State
2001 2.8 2.2 3.8
1999 2.8 2.3 3.7
1997 2.8 2.3 3.7
1995 3.3 2.8 4.4
1993 3.5 3.1 4.4
1991 3.4 3.1 4.0

 

Table #3 - Tenure in Current Office (in years)

Year Total Washington State
2001 3.6 3.1 4.6
1999 3.6 3.1 4.6
1997 3.6 3.1 4.5
1995 4.2 3.7 5.2
1993 4.4 3.9 5.5
1991 4.2 3.9 4.8

 

Table #4 - Tenure in Congress (in years)

Year Total Washington State
2001 5.3 5.0 5.8
1999 5.4 5.2 5.9
1997 5.6 5.5 5.7
1995 5.7 5.6 6.1
1993 5.9 5.6 6.5
1991 5.6 5.7 5.5