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Agriculture Specialist
Pay and Benefits

Agriculture Specialists are competitively rewarded for their time on the job. In addition to base salary, Agriculture Specialists may be eligible for locality pay, overtime pay, and more.

Grade Base Salary Average FY 2023 Locality Pay* Total Compensation
GS-5 $32,357 $10,513 $42,870
GS-7 $40,082 $13,023 $53,105
GS-9 $49,028 $15,929 $64,957
GS-11 $59,319 $19,633 $78,952
GS-12 $71,099 $23,100 $94,199

* For the locality pay area of Washington-Baltimore-Arlington, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA.

  • Salary: Your salary corresponds to your grade level, as quoted on USAJOBS.
  • Overtime Pay: Earn up to 25% of your salary for time worked outside the 40-hour work week.
  • Locality Pay: You may receive pay on top of your salary, depending on what county you work in. Explore Locality Pay Tables.
  • Premium Pay: You may be eligible for premium pay for working on Sundays, holidays and night shifts.
  • Cash Awards: Outstanding performers may receive cash awards as recognition for their superior efforts, funding permitting.
  • Career Progression: Agriculture Specialist is a career ladder position with a grade level progression of GS-5, GS-7, GS-9, GS-11 and GS-12. For more information, see the Career Progression section below.

Want to learn what grade level you would qualify for? Review the Agriculture Specialist Qualification Aid.

CBP offers Agriculture Specialists substantial leave benefits and unique training opportunities, including:

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13 to 26 DAYS
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The maximum amount of annual leave that you may carry over into the following year is 30 days. There is no limit to the amount of sick leave that you may accrue. For more details, visit the Benefits page.


Disabled Veteran Leave

Employees eligible under the Wounded Warriors Federal Leave Act are entitled to disabled veteran leave for the purpose of undergoing medical treatment for a service connected disability. View the Disabled Veteran Leave Fact Sheet for more information.

CBP supports Agriculture Specialists with long-term career success, rapid promotion potential and first-rate training for new and current officers. Agriculture Specialist is a career ladder position with a grade level progression of GS-5, GS-7, GS-9, GS-11 and GS-12. You will be eligible for a promotion to the next grade level without reapplying once you successfully complete one year in each grade level, with supervisor approval. At the GS-13 level and beyond, you compete for positions and are promoted based on merit with significant pay boost for progressing on the career ladder.



Caeer chart. Entry level to journeyman to supervisory to executive

Entry Level: Agriculture Specialist entry level positions are GS-5, GS-7 and GS-9, after completion of basic training at the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center in Glynco, Georgia.

Journeyman: Journeyman positions entail more responsibility, duties and higher performance standards.

Supervisory: Supervisory roles include leadership and increased responsibilities.

Executive: Beyond the GS-15 level is the Senior Executive Service (SES), which makes up the core of CBP’s leadership. SES is typically responsible for high-level decisions, CBP's vision and interacting with external stakeholders and Congress.

The CBP Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) reimburses Agriculture Specialists for off-duty post-secondary education costs of tuition, fees and books. 

An Agriculture Specialist may apply for benefits up to $1750 per course and $5250 per calendar year for a professional certification or for any two- or four-year degree, including associates, bachelors, masters and doctorates. 

Employee health is of the utmost importance to CBP. Agriculture Specialists are eligible to choose from a variety of medical insurance policies and other healthcare insurance options and take advantage of flexible spending accounts. Programs available include:

CBP continues to support Agriculture Specialists retiring from the agency with the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS), which includes three streams of income:

FERS Basic Annuity: Agriculture Specialists that serve in the federal government are eligible to retire when they reach their Minimum Retirement Age (MRA) with 30 years of federal service, age 60 with 20 years of federal service, age 62 with 5 years of federal service, or with a reduced annuity when they reach MRA with at least 10 years of federal service.

Any of these retirement options will provide a pension for the duration of the retiree’s lifetime, which will be calculated based upon their total years of service and their high-3 (the average of their highest three consecutive years of federal salary). Learn more about FERS basic annuity.

Thrift Savings Plan: Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) is a defined contribution plan designed to give federal employees the same retirement savings-related benefits as with 401(K) plans in the private sector. Employees choose the amount to contribute, which is transferable if you change employers, with employer matching up to 5% of your base salary. Learn more about the Thrift Savings Plan.

Social Security: Agriculture Specialist retirees may receive social security retirement payments; benefits are transferable if you change employers. Learn more about Social Security retirement benefits.