HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Over the years we've seen hundreds of polls and statistics where Alabama ranks at the bottom of the barrel; obesity, unemployment, academic achievement, to name just a few.
The lists can sometimes be disheartening - but this isn't one of those.
A recent comparison of average federal employee salaries by FedSmith puts Alabama just outside the top 10 and behind such government-dominated areas as the District of Columbia, Maryland and Virginia.
The average federal employment salary in Alabama in 2013 was $79,251 or about $123 off the national average.
Alabama has about 50,000 federal employees with the vast majority of those – around 30,000 – working for the Department of Defense. Georgia was the only other southern state to land in the top third for federal pay. Its average salary was $74,329.
Top 10 Areas for Average Federal Pay:
- District of Columbia - $107,760
- Maryland - $96,922
- Virginia - $88,470
- Rhode Island - $87,224
- New Jersey - $86,283
- New Hampshire - $85,133
- Massachusetts - $81,964
- California - $80,843
- Illinois - $79,838
- Connecticut - $79,430
The data comes from the Office of Personnel Management. It showed the median federal salary – meaning half the workforce earned more and half earned less - was $73,736. That 1.4 percent increase from the previous year was in spite of a multi-year pay freeze.
Salaries for federal employees were frozen from 2010 to Jan. 1 of this year. That didn't stop increases due to promotions, grade increases or other types of pay raises, however, as reflected in the higher median salary. The median federal salary in 2012 was $72,714.
The highest average salary was the Securities and Exchange Commission with an average salary of $157,014. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. finished second with a median salary of $130,108. The lowest median salary was $60,189 paid by the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Female federal workers earned a median income of $70,236, while males earned $75,689.
You can read the full Office of Personnel Management report here.