A-23263, JUNE 21, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 804

A-23263: Jun 21, 1928

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DO NOT AUTOMATICALLY INCREASE THE SALARY RATES OF FIELD POSITIONS WHETHER THE RATES WERE OR WERE NOT SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW. THERE IS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE CONSIDERATION SUCH ACTION. ARE APPLICABLE TO POSITIONS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA THE RATES OF COMPENSATION OF WHICH HAVE HERETOFORE BEEN SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW. ONLY IF SUCH POSITIONS HAVE BEEN ALLOCATED UNDER THE ORIGINAL CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923. SIXTY-EIGHT INSPECTORS IN THE BUREAU OF SAFETY HERETOFORE HAVE BEEN PAID $3. IT SHOULD APPEAR THAT THESE BUREAU OF SAFETY INSPECTORS WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY PROMOTED. THE SECRETARY IS THE CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER OF THE COMMISSION. IF HIS POSITION IS TO BE ALLOCATED.

A-23263, JUNE 21, 1928, 7 COMP. GEN. 804

CLASSIFICATION OF CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES - APPLICATION OF ACT OF MAY 28, 1928 THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, 45 STAT. 776, AMENDING THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, AUTHORIZING INCREASES IN SALARY RATES, DO NOT AUTOMATICALLY INCREASE THE SALARY RATES OF FIELD POSITIONS WHETHER THE RATES WERE OR WERE NOT SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW, BUT THERE IS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE CONSIDERATION SUCH ACTION, IF ANY, AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO ADJUST THE RATES OF COMPENSATION FOR FIELD POSITIONS "TO CORRESPOND, SO FAR AS PRACTICABLE TO THE RATES ESTABLISHED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923 FOR POSITIONS IN THE DEPARTMENTAL SERVICES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA" AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, FIXING THE NEW SCHEDULE OF SALARY RATES. THE PROVISIONS FOR ADJUSTMENT OF GRADES AND SALARY RATES AUTHORIZED BY THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, 45 STAT. 776, AMENDING THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, ARE APPLICABLE TO POSITIONS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA THE RATES OF COMPENSATION OF WHICH HAVE HERETOFORE BEEN SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW, ONLY IF SUCH POSITIONS HAVE BEEN ALLOCATED UNDER THE ORIGINAL CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE CHAIRMAN OF THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION, JUNE 21, 1928:

CONSIDERATION HAS BEEN GIVEN TO YOUR LETTER OF JUNE 7, 1928, AS FOLLOWS:

THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION RESPECTFULLY REQUESTS YOUR DECISION CONCERNING THE SALARIES TO BE PAID THE FOLLOWING PERSONS:

THE CONGRESS BY PREVIOUS STATUTES PROVIDED THAT THE SALARY OF THE SECRETARY OF THE COMMISSION SHOULD BE $7,500 PER ANNUM; THAT THE SALARIES OF THE CHIEF INSPECTOR OF LOCOMOTIVE BOILERS AND THE DIRECTOR OF THE BUREAU OF SAFETY SHOULD BE $6,000 EACH PER ANNUM; THAT THE SALARIES OF THE TWO ASSISTANT CHIEF INSPECTORS OF LOCOMOTIVE BOILERS AND THE TWO ASSISTANT DIRECTORS OF THE BUREAU OF SAFETY SHOULD BE $5,000 EACH PER ANNUM; THAT THE SALARY OF THE PRINCIPAL VALUATION EXAMINER SHOULD BE $7,500 PER ANNUM; AND THAT THE SALARIES OF SIXTY FIVE INSPECTORS OF LOCOMOTIVES (FIELD SERVICE) SHOULD BE $3,600 EACH PER ANNUM. WITH THE KNOWLEDGE AND CONSENT OF THE CONGRESS THROUGH ITS APPROPRIATING COMMITTEES, BUT NOT BY STATUTORY AUTHORITY, SIXTY-EIGHT INSPECTORS IN THE BUREAU OF SAFETY HERETOFORE HAVE BEEN PAID $3,600 EACH PER ANNUM TO CORRESPOND WITH THE SALARIES PAID THE LOCOMOTIVE INSPECTORS BECAUSE OF COMPARATIVE WORK. IT SHOULD APPEAR THAT THESE BUREAU OF SAFETY INSPECTORS WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY PROMOTED. DOES THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, SUPERSEDE THE PREVIOUS ACTS OF THE CONGRESS WHICH AUTHORIZED SPECIFIC SALARIES FOR THE ABOVE-NAMED POSITIONS SHOULD THE COMMISSION ALLOCATE THE POSITIONS TO GRADES ENTITLING THEM TO INCREASED COMPENSATION? IN THE CASE OF THE SECRETARY OF THE COMMISSION, THE SECRETARY IS THE CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER OF THE COMMISSION, AND AS SUCH, IF HIS POSITION IS TO BE ALLOCATED, IT IS OUR VIEW THAT IT SHOULD BE PLACED IN THE HIGHEST GRADE. IF, HOWEVER, BECAUSE OF HIS PREVIOUS STATUTORY SALARY HIS POSITION SHOULD BE ALLOCATED BY THE COMMISSION TO GRADE CAF 15, WOULD HE RECEIVE THE MINIMUM SALARY OF $8,000 PER ANNUM OR THE MAXIMUM OF $9,000 PER ANNUM?

YOUR SUBMISSION APPEARS TO INVOLVE POSITIONS BOTH IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND IN THE FIELD SERVICE. THE AUTOMATIC PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, 45 STAT. 776, GENERALLY KNOWN AS THE WELCH ACT, AMENDING THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, ARE APPLICABLE ONLY TO POSITIONS AND EMPLOYEES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA AND WITHIN THE TERMS OF THE ORIGINAL CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923. WITH RESPECT TO THE FIELD SERVICE, THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, SUPRA, PROVIDES AS FOLLOWS:

THE HEADS OF THE SEVERAL EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS ARE AUTHORIZED TO ADJUST THE COMPENSATION OF CERTAIN CIVILIAN POSITIONS IN THE FIELD SERVICES, THE COMPENSATION OF WHICH WAS ADJUSTED BY THE ACT OF DECEMBER 6, 1924, TO CORRESPOND, SO FAR AS MAY BE PRACTICABLE, TO THE RATES ESTABLISHED BY THIS ACT FOR POSITIONS IN THE DEPARTMENTAL SERVICES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

THE ACT OF DECEMBER 6, 1924, 43 STAT. 704, 705, SPECIFICALLY APPLIED TO THE INTERSTATE COMMERCE COMMISSION. SAID ACT PROVIDED AS FOLLOWS:

THE APPROPRIATIONS HEREIN MADE MAY BE UTILIZED BY THE HEADS OF THE SEVERAL DEPARTMENTS AND INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS TO ACCOMPLISH THE PURPOSES OF THIS ACT, NOTWITHSTANDING THE SPECIFIC RATES OF COMPENSATION AND THE SALARY RESTRICTIONS CONTAINED IN THE REGULAR ANNUAL APPROPRIATION ACTS FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1925 OR THE SALARY RESTRICTIONS IN OTHER ACTS WHICH LIMIT SALARIES TO RATES IN CONFLICT WITH THE RATES FIXED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923 FOR THE DEPARTMENTAL SERVICE.

THIS ACT HAS BEEN EXTENDED THROUGH EACH SUBSEQUENT FISCAL YEAR. FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1929, SEE SECTION 2 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 5, 1928, 45 STAT. 193. THESE STATUTES HAVE HERETOFORE BEEN CONSTRUED AND APPLIED AS AUTHORIZING THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE TO ADJUST THE COMPENSATION OF POSITIONS THE SALARY OF WHICH HAD THERETOFORE BEEN SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER STATUTE. 4 COMP. GEN. 582; ID. 625. THE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, DO NOT AUTOMATICALLY INCREASE THE RATES OF COMPENSATION OF ANY FIELD POSITION WHETHER THE RATES WERE OR WERE NOT SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW, BUT THERE IS FOR ADMINISTRATIVE CONSIDERATION SUCH ACTION, IF ANY, AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO ADJUST THE RATES OF COMPENSATION FOR FIELD POSITIONS "TO CORRESPOND, SO FAR AS PRACTICABLE, TO THE RATES ESTABLISHED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923 FOR POSITIONS IN THE DEPARTMENTAL SERVICES IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA," AS AMENDED BY THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, FIXING THE NEW SCHEDULE OF SALARY RATES.

WITH RESPECT TO THE POSITIONS IN THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, MENTIONED IN YOUR SUBMISSION, YOU DO NOT STATE THE GRADES UNDER THE ORIGINAL STATUTE IN WHICH THE POSITIONS ARE AT PRESENT ALLOCATED; BUT IT IS UNDERSTOOD THAT YOUR QUESTIONS ARE (1) WHETHER THE ADJUSTMENT IN RATES OF COMPENSATION AUTHORIZED AND REQUIRED BY THE ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS OF THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, SUPRA, ARE APPLICABLE TO POSITIONS, THE RATES OF COMPENSATION OF WHICH HAVE HERETOFORE BEEN SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY OTHER LAW; AND (2) WHAT WOULD BE THE AUTOMATIC RATE OF COMPENSATION UNDER THE ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, FOR THE POSITION OF THE SECRETARY OF THE COMMISSION AND OTHER POSITIONS NOW SPECIFICALLY FIXED BY STATUTE AT THE RATE OF $7,500 PER ANNUM. SEE ACT OF MAY 16, 1928, 45 STAT. 582.

IF THE POSITIONS REFERRED TO IN THE FIRST QUESTION, AS ABOVE STATED,HAVE BEEN ALLOCATED UNDER THE ORIGINAL CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1923, SAID QUESTION IS ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE, BUT IF THEY HAVE NOT BEEN SO ALLOCATED, AND ARE NOT POSITIONS IN THE FIELD SERVICE, SAID QUESTION IS ANSWERED IN THE NEGATIVE.

IN ANSWER TO THE SECOND QUESTION I HAVE TO ADVISE THAT UNDER THE DECISION OF THIS OFFICE, DATED JUNE 2, 1928, A-23213, 7 COMP. GEN.760, EMPLOYEES IN POSITIONS IN GRADE CAF-13 UNDER THE ORIGINAL STATUTE WITH SALARY RATE AT $7,500 PER ANNUM WOULD CONTINUE TO BE PAID AT THE RATE OF $7,500 PER ANNUM IF THE POSITION WERE PLACED IN GRADE CAF-14 UNDER THE AMENDED STATUTE. BUT IF A POSITION IN GRADE CAF-13 IS REQUIRED, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE AMENDATORY ACT, TO BE PLACED IN GRADE CAF 15, IT WOULD RETAIN THE SAME RELATIVE POSITION IN SAID GRADE 15 THAT IT HAD OCCUPIED IN THE OLD GRADE 13, SAID RELATIVE POSITION TO BE DETERMINED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE RULES ANNOUNCED IN THE DECISION OF JUNE 2, 1928.

IT MAY BE STATED FOR GENERAL APPLICATION THAT ALL POSITIONS IN GRADES PS- 6 AND CAF-13 PLACED UNDER THE AMENDED STATUTE IN GRADES PS-8 AND CAF-15 WILL RETAIN THE SAME RELATIVE POSITION AND BE PAID AT THE RATES OF COMPENSATION AS FOLLOWS: ORIGINAL STATUTE (GRADE CAF-13, GRADE PS-6) -- $6,000, $6,500, $7,000,

$7,500 AMENDED STATUTE (GRADE CAF-15, GRADE PS-8) -- $8,000, $8,500, $8,500,

$9,000

IF A POSITION PAID AT THE SALARY RATE OF $7,500 PER ANNUM IS IN GRADE CAF -14 OR GRADE PS-7 UNDER THE ORIGINAL STATUTE, THE RELATIVE POSITION, IF PLACED IN GRADES CAF-15 OR PS-8 UNDER THE AMENDED STATUTE, WOULD LOGICALLY BE AT THE RATE OF $9,000 PER ANNUM, TO CORRESPOND TO THE RELATIVE PLACE OF A POSITION GOING FROM GRADE CAF-13 OR GRADE PS-6 TO THE CORRESPONDING GRADES CAF-15 OR PS-8 BY OPERATION OF THE AMENDED STATUTE.