A-22816, MAY 10, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 714

A-22816: May 10, 1928

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COMPENSATION - REDUCTION - NAVAL STATION EMPLOYEE AN EMPLOYEE OF A NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT WHO WAS REDUCED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY FROM PACKER TO BOX MAKER. WHO PERFORMED SERVICE IN THE LOWER RATING AND WAS PAID THEREFOR. IS NOT ENTITLED TO ANY FURTHER PAYMENT. IT APPEARS THAT CLAIMANT WAS EMPLOYED AT THE NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT. THE NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT WAS ASSIGNED A TENTATIVE BUDGET BY THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS OF THE NAVY DEPARTMENT AND THE OFFICER IN CHARGE WAS DIRECTED TO DISCHARGE SUCH OF THE PERSONNEL AS MIGHT BE NECESSARY TO BRING THE EXPENDITURES WITHIN THE BUDGET. THE PACKING FORCE WAS REDUCED BY THE DISCHARGE OF FOUR PACKERS. AN EXISTING VACANCY WAS NOT FILLED. OF WHOM CLAIMANT WAS ONE.

A-22816, MAY 10, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 714

COMPENSATION - REDUCTION - NAVAL STATION EMPLOYEE AN EMPLOYEE OF A NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT WHO WAS REDUCED BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY FROM PACKER TO BOX MAKER, AND WHO PERFORMED SERVICE IN THE LOWER RATING AND WAS PAID THEREFOR, IS NOT ENTITLED TO ANY FURTHER PAYMENT.

DECISION BY COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL, MAY 10, 1928:

THOMAS KELLY APPLIED APRIL 25, 1928, FOR REVIEW OF SETTLEMENT 0213962, DATED MARCH 17, 1928, DISALLOWING HIS CLAIM FOR $119.25, REPRESENTING THE DIFFERENCE IN PAY FOR THE PERIOD FROM MARCH 25, 1926, TO OCTOBER 31, 1927, BETWEEN $5.44 AND $5.20 PER DAY, THE RATES OF PAY OF PACKER AND BOX MAKER, RESPECTIVELY.

IT APPEARS THAT CLAIMANT WAS EMPLOYED AT THE NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT, BROOKLYN, N.Y., WITH THE RATING AND PAY OF PACKER. IN FEBRUARY, 1926, THE NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT WAS ASSIGNED A TENTATIVE BUDGET BY THE BUREAU OF SUPPLIES AND ACCOUNTS OF THE NAVY DEPARTMENT AND THE OFFICER IN CHARGE WAS DIRECTED TO DISCHARGE SUCH OF THE PERSONNEL AS MIGHT BE NECESSARY TO BRING THE EXPENDITURES WITHIN THE BUDGET. AFTER CAREFUL CONSIDERATION, WITH A VIEW TO LIMITING THE NUMBER OF DISCHARGES NECESSARY, THE PACKING FORCE WAS REDUCED BY THE DISCHARGE OF FOUR PACKERS; AN EXISTING VACANCY WAS NOT FILLED; AND TWO PACKERS, OF WHOM CLAIMANT WAS ONE, WERE REDUCED FROM PACKER TO BOX MAKER SO AS TO AVOID THEIR DISCHARGE. AT THAT TIME CLAIMANT AND THE OTHER PACKER REDUCED WERE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE EFFICIENCY LIST OF THE PACKERS RETAINED IN SERVICE. INSTRUCTIONS WERE ISSUED THAT THE TWO BOX MAKERS WERE TO BE ASSIGNED DUTY IN THE BOX SHOP.

IT IS STATED IN THE REPORT ON THE MATTER BY THE OFFICER IN CHARGE OF THE NAVAL SUPPLY DEPOT THAT A NUMBER OF YEARS AGO THE NAVY DEPARTMENT ELIMINATED THE RATING OF PACKER FROM THE SCHEDULE OF WAGES AND SUBSTITUTED THE RATING OF BOX MAKER. THE DUTIES OF THE LATTER WERE TO MANUFACTURE BOXES, RUN SAWS WHEN NECESSARY, AND TO PACK STORES. SEVERAL YEARS LATER THE RATING OF PACKER WAS REINSTATED IN THE WAGE SCHEDULE WITH A VIEW TO PROMOTING THE MOST EFFICIENT BOX MAKER TO THE HIGHER RATING, BUT, IT IS UNDERSTOOD, NO CHANGE WAS MADE IN THE DUTIES OF BOX MAKER.

AT THE TIME OF CLAIMANT'S REDUCTION HE ACTUALLY WORKED A FEW DAYS IN THE BOX SHOP, BUT SINCE THAT TIME HAS BEEN PACKING MATERIAL. THE OFFICER IN CHARGE STATES THAT THIS WAS NOT CONSIDERED AS WORKING HIM OUT OF HIS RATING, AS THE DUTIES OF PACKER AND BOX MAKER ARE INTERCHANGEABLE. INSTRUCTIONS WERE ISSUED THAT VACANCIES IN THE FORCE OF PACKER SHOULD BE FILLED BY THE PROMOTION OF BOX MAKERS IN THE ORDER OF THEIR EFFICIENCY, NEW EMPLOYEES TO BE TAKEN ON IN THE RATING OF BOX MAKER.

UPON THE MATTER BEING BROUGHT TO THE ATTENTION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE NAVY, HE DIRECTED THAT CLAIMANT BE RESTORED TO HIS FORMER RATING OF PACKER EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 1, 1927.

IT APPEARS, THEREFORE, THAT CLAIMANT WAS REDUCED IN RATING BY COMPETENT AUTHORITY, SERVED IN THE LOWER GRADE, AND WAS PAID THE COMPENSATION THERETO ATTACHED. IT HAS BEEN HELD IN NUMEROUS SIMILAR CASES THAT UNDER SUCH CONDITIONS THE RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES AND THE EMPLOYEE MUST BE DETERMINED ON THE BASIS OF THE POSITION OR RATING SPECIFIED IN HIS APPOINTMENT, REGARDLESS OF THE POSITION OR RATING TO WHICH HE MIGHT, OR SHOULD, HAVE BEEN APPOINTED. THE EMPLOYEE HAS BEEN PAID IN FULL THE COMPENSATION AUTHORIZED UNDER THE APPOINTMENT WHICH HE HELD AND THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS FOR THE PAYMENT OF ANY SUM IN ADDITION THERETO. SEE 6 COMP. GEN. 286 AND THE DECISIONS THEREIN CITED.