A-34820, FEBRUARY 6, 1931, 10 COMP. GEN. 347

A-34820: Feb 6, 1931

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CLASSIFICATION OF CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES - BROOKHART SALARY ACT - FIELD SERVICE EMPLOYEES WHOSE FIELD POSITIONS WERE IN A GRADE ON JULY 3. WHOSE SALARY RATES WERE CONSIDERED FOR ADJUSTMENT UNDER THE WELCH ACT OF MAY 28. FOR WHOM NO ADJUSTMENTS WERE ADMINISTRATIVELY MADE UNDER THAT STATUTE. ARE NOT NOW ENTITLED TO ANY INCREASE IN COMPENSATION AS A STATUTORY RIGHT UNDER THE WELCH ACT OR THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT. WHOSE POSITIONS ARE IN THE CIVILIAN FIELD GRADES OR SALARY RANGES COMPARABLE TO ONE OF THE FIRST THREE GRADES OF THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE AS PRESCRIBED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT. WHO ARE NOT ENTITLED TO AN INCREASE IN COMPENSATION UNDER THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT OF JULY 3. FOR THE REASON THAT SAID GRADES WERE NOT INCLUDED WITHIN THE TERMS THEREOF.

A-34820, FEBRUARY 6, 1931, 10 COMP. GEN. 347

CLASSIFICATION OF CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES - BROOKHART SALARY ACT - FIELD SERVICE EMPLOYEES WHOSE FIELD POSITIONS WERE IN A GRADE ON JULY 3, 1930, NOT INCLUDED WITHIN THE TERMS OF THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT, AND WHOSE SALARY RATES WERE CONSIDERED FOR ADJUSTMENT UNDER THE WELCH ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, BUT FOR WHOM NO ADJUSTMENTS WERE ADMINISTRATIVELY MADE UNDER THAT STATUTE, ARE NOT NOW ENTITLED TO ANY INCREASE IN COMPENSATION AS A STATUTORY RIGHT UNDER THE WELCH ACT OR THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF WAR, FEBRUARY 6, 1931:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED, THROUGH THE CHIEF OF FINANCE AND THE QUARTERMASTER GENERAL OF THE ARMY, A REQUEST FOR DECISION WHETHER FRED L. JONES AND A NUMBER OF OTHER SKILLED LABORERS UNDER THE QUARTERMASTER CORPS OF THE ARMY, LEAVENWORTH, KANS., WHOSE POSITIONS ARE IN THE CIVILIAN FIELD GRADES OR SALARY RANGES COMPARABLE TO ONE OF THE FIRST THREE GRADES OF THE CUSTODIAL SERVICE AS PRESCRIBED BY THE CLASSIFICATION ACT, AS AMENDED BY THE WELCH ACT, WHO ARE NOT ENTITLED TO AN INCREASE IN COMPENSATION UNDER THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT OF JULY 3, 1930, FOR THE REASON THAT SAID GRADES WERE NOT INCLUDED WITHIN THE TERMS THEREOF, 10 COMP. GEN 49; ID. 130, MAY NOW BE GRANTED A STATUTORY INCREASE IN COMPENSATION UNDER THE TERMS OF SECTION 3 OF THE WELCH ACT OF MAY 28, 1928, 45 STAT. 785, APPLICABLE TO THE FIELD SERVICE.

YOU STATE THAT THE REASON FOR FAILURE TO INCLUDE SAID EMPLOYEES WITHIN THE BENEFITS OF THE WELCH ACT WAS THAT THEY WERE CONSIDERED AS TEMPORARY EMPLOYEES. THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3 OF THE WELCH ACT AUTHORIZING ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICES TO ADJUST SALARY RATES OF POSITIONS IN THE FIELD SERVICE TO COMPARE TO THE SALARY RATES ESTABLISHED BY THE SAME ACT FOR SIMILAR POSITIONS IN THE DEPARTMENTAL SERVICE, WERE NOT MANDATORY, AS ARE THE SIMILAR PROVISIONS IN SECTION 2 OF THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT. WHILE THE TEMPORARY STATUS OF A FIELD POSITION ON JUNE 30, 1928, DID NOT PRECLUDE THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE FROM MAKING THE SAME ADJUSTMENTS IN SALARY RATES AS WERE MADE IN PERMANENT OR REGULAR POSITIONS IN THE SAME GRADE, 10 COMP. GEN. 71; ID. 91, IT WAS WITHIN THE DISCRETION OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE TO TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION THE TEMPORARY CHARACTER OF THE FIELD POSITIONS IN DETERMINING WHETHER AN ADJUSTMENT IN COMPENSATION WAS NECESSARY OR ADVISABLE UNDER THE WELCH ACT.

THIS APPARENTLY HAVING BEEN THE SITUATION IN THE INSTANT CASE, THERE IS NOW NO AUTHORITY TO MAKE ADJUSTMENTS UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 3 OF THE WELCH ACT IN THE SALARY RATES OF SAID EMPLOYEES. IN THIS CONNECTION YOUR ATTENTION IS INVITED TO DECISION OF DECEMBER 31, 1930, A-33547, 10 COMP. GEN. 290, HOLDING AS FOLLOWS, QUOTING FROM THE SYLLABUS:

ONLY ONE ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION TO GRANT A STATUTORY INCREASE IN COMPENSATION TO EMPLOYEES IN THE FIELD SERVICE UNDER THE WELCH ACT, AS DISTINGUISHED FROM AN ADMINISTRATIVE PROMOTION, WAS AUTHORIZED, AND IF AND WHEN THAT ACTION WAS TAKEN, THE SALARY ADJUSTMENT UNDER THAT STATUTE WAS COMPLETED PRECLUDING ANY FURTHER INCREASE IN COMPENSATION NOW AS A STATUTORY RIGHT UNDER THE WELCH ACT, AND ANY ADJUSTMENTS IN COMPENSATION AUTHORIZED UNDER THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT MUST BE MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION ACTUALLY TAKEN UNDER THE WELCH ACT.

THE SAME PRINCIPLE IS APPLICABLE TO PRECLUDE ANY STATUTORY ADJUSTMENT NOW AS TO EMPLOYEES WHOSE FIELD POSITIONS WERE CONSIDERED FOR ADJUSTMENT UNDER THE WELCH ACT BUT FOR WHICH NO ADJUSTMENTS WERE MADE THEREUNDER AS A RESULT OF THE EXERCISE OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION GRANTED BY THAT STATUTE.

YOU ARE ADVISED, THEREFORE, THAT THE EMPLOYEES IN QUESTION ARE NOT NOW ENTITLED TO ANY INCREASE IN COMPENSATION AS A MATTER OF STATUTORY RIGHT EITHER UNDER THE WELCH ACT OR THE BROOKHART SALARY ACT.