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As the top in the U.S. government, the president is paid the highest salary of any government employee. In addition to the salary, modern-day presidents enjoy many non-salary benefits.
Since 2001, the president of the United States has received an annual salary of $400,000 and a $50,000-a-year expense account, which is in great contrast to the $25,000 offered to George Washington in 1789. The president's salary serves as the cap of all other federal salaries, and any raises for federal agents must be formally approved by Congress and the president.
The president flies on specifically designed Boeing 747s (each is known as Air Force One when the president travels on it) for domestic and international travel. The president also travels around the Washington, D.C. area in an armored limousine that has bulletproof windows and tires and an internal ventilation system in the event of a chemical or biological attack. The president uses Marine One, the presidential helicopter, for trips around Washington that require longer travel or on specific presidential trips.
Housing and Security
The president lives and works in the historic White House in Washington, D.C. The presidential family is also given full access to Camp David, a vast retreat in Maryland used for casual vacations and for greeting foreign dignitaries. The president and his family are protected at all times by Secret Service agents.
Benefits After Leaving Office
After a president leaves office, he can hold Secret Service privileges for 10 years, he has free mailing privileges, and he receives a free office space. Former presidents can establish their own presidential libraries, and receive an annual pension of up to $180,000.
Shannon Stanton has been an avid writer for over 15 years. She entered her first writing contest in the sixth grade and pursued her interest in writing and literature through college, where she was staff writer and editor on her school's newspaper. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and in history from Mount Holyoke College.