President Donald Trump’s acting chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, and his senior adviser John Czwartacki, are out-earning all other personnel working in the Executive Office of the President because of their standing as officials in other agencies, the latest salary report to Congress on White House personnel shows.
Both Mulvaney and Czwartacki earn more than the White House personnel cap instituted by Congress.
Mulvaney, who previously led the Office of Management and Budget, still earns his OMB salary of $203,500, even though Russell Vought has been named acting OMB director in Mulvaney’s absence.
Mulvaney gets to keep his OMB salary because Trump has never officially installed Mulvaney as the permanent White House chief of staff. Should he be installed to the White House role, he’d likely take a pay cut.
Judd Deere, a spokesperson for the White House, said that Mulvaney is a “detailee on non-reimbursable assignment to the White House,” meaning he’s not on the White House’s payroll.
It’s unclear exactly when the President would decide to move Mulvaney to the White House role permanently. Trump has said he prefers to keep staff in acting positions.
“It gives me more flexibility. Do you understand that? I like ‘acting,'” Trump told reporters in January.
Czwartacki, who makes $239,595, was the chief communications officer at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Like Mulvaney, he is now a “detailee” for the White House as a “senior adviser to the chief of staff for strategy and stakeholder engagement.” Detailees are typically employees of other agencies who are essentially loaned out to the White House for long periods of the year.
Czwartacki’s salary exceeds that of his own “acting” boss, Mulvaney. Though uncommon, Czwartacki is not the only federal employee to have a paycheck larger than those earned by top White House staffers. Cabinet secretaries’ salaries top out at just over 200,000, but some CFPB salaries can exceed that.
Trump makes a $400,000 salary as President, but has pledged to donate his paychecks to different federal agencies each quarter.