A-43924, AUGUST 27, 1932, 12 COMP. GEN. 292

A-43924: Aug 27, 1932

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

THE AMOUNT OF SALARY TO BE IMPOUNDED IS AT THE RATE PAID THE LAST INCUMBENT. WHEN A VACANT POSITION IS AUTHORIZED BY THE PRESIDENT TO BE FILLED. (A) MUST IMPOUNDMENT THROUGH SAVINGS ON A VACANCY BE MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE PREVIOUS INCUMBENT'S SALARY IF IT WERE HIGHER THAN THE INITIAL SALARY OF THE GRADE? (B) IF IMPOUNDMENT IS MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE PREVIOUS INCUMBENT'S SALARY AND THE VACANCY IS LATER FILLED AT A LOWER RATE. SHALL BE USED TO PAY THE COMPENSATION OF AN INCUMBENT APPOINTED TO ANY CIVIL POSITION UNDER THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT OR THE MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA WHICH IS VACANT ON JULY 1. SUCH ACTION IS NECESSARY AND IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST. IS ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE.

A-43924, AUGUST 27, 1932, 12 COMP. GEN. 292

ECONOMY ACT - FILLING OF VACANCIES - IMPOUNDING AS TO ALL POSITIONS OCCUPIED JUNE 30, 1932, OR THEREAFTER WHICH BECAME VACANT ON OR AFTER JULY 1, 1932, THE AMOUNT OF SALARY TO BE IMPOUNDED IS AT THE RATE PAID THE LAST INCUMBENT. WHEN A VACANT POSITION IS AUTHORIZED BY THE PRESIDENT TO BE FILLED, THERE MAY BE RESTORED TO THE APPROPRIATION FROM THE IMPOUNDED FUND ONLY THAT PORTION OF THE SALARY OF THE VACANT POSITION NECESSARY TO PAY THE SALARY OF THE NEW INCUMBENT, THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE SALARY OF THE LAST INCUMBENT AND OF THE NEW INCUMBENT, IF ANY, TO REMAIN IMPOUNDED. NO PART OF THE APPROPRIATION IN THE IMPOUNDED FUND MAY BE USED TO EMPLOY TEMPORARY, EMERGENCY, OR SEASONAL EMPLOYEES UNLESS THE PRESIDENT, UNDER THE AUTHORITY CONTAINED IN THE LAST PROVISO TO SECTION 203 OF THE ECONOMY ACT, SHALL EXEMPT ALL OR ANY PART OF AN APPROPRIATION FROM THE REQUIREMENT FOR IMPOUNDING.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE, AUGUST 27, 1932:

CONSIDERATION HAS BEEN GIVEN TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 8, 1932, REQUESTING DECISION OF THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS:

1. (A) MUST IMPOUNDMENT THROUGH SAVINGS ON A VACANCY BE MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE PREVIOUS INCUMBENT'S SALARY IF IT WERE HIGHER THAN THE INITIAL SALARY OF THE GRADE?

(B) IF IMPOUNDMENT IS MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE PREVIOUS INCUMBENT'S SALARY AND THE VACANCY IS LATER FILLED AT A LOWER RATE, MUST THIS DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FORMER AND THE NEW INCUMBENT'S SALARY CONTINUE TO BE IMPOUNDED?

2. DOES SECTION 203 PERMIT MONEY UNEXPENDED BY THE OPERATION OF THIS SECTION TO BE EXPENDED FOR TEMPORARY, EMERGENCY AND SEASONAL POSITIONS AS WELL AS FOR FILLING VACANCIES BY AUTHORITY OF THE PRESIDENT?

SECTION 203 OF THE ECONOMY ACT OF JUNE 30, 1932, 47 STAT. 403, 404,PROVIDED AS FOLLOWS:

NO APPROPRIATION AVAILABLE TO ANY EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT OR INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENT OR TO THE MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1933, SHALL BE USED TO PAY THE COMPENSATION OF AN INCUMBENT APPOINTED TO ANY CIVIL POSITION UNDER THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT OR THE MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA WHICH IS VACANT ON JULY 1, 1932, OR TO ANY SUCH POSITION WHICH MAY BECOME VACANT AFTER SUCH DATE: PROVIDED, THAT THIS INHIBITION SHALL NOT APPLY (A) TO ABSOLUTELY ESSENTIAL POSITIONS THE FILLING OF WHICH MAY BE AUTHORIZED OR APPROVED IN WRITING BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES, (B) TO TEMPORARY, EMERGENCY, SEASONAL, OR COOPERATIVE POSITIONS, OR (C) TO COMMISSIONED, COMMISSIONED WARRANT, WARRANT, AND ENLISTED PERSONNEL AND CADETS, OF THE COAST GUARD. THE APPROPRIATIONS OR PORTIONS OF APPROPRIATIONS UNEXPENDED BY THE OPERATION OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT BE USED FOR ANY OTHER PURPOSES BUT SHALL BE IMPOUNDED AND RETURNED TO THE TREASURY, AND A REPORT OF ALL SUCH VACANCIES, THE NUMBER THEREOF FILLED, AND THE AMOUNTS UNEXPENDED, FOR THE PERIOD BETWEEN JULY 1, 1932, AND OCTOBER 31, 1932, SHALL BE SUBMITTED TO CONGRESS ON THE FIRST DAY OF THE NEXT REGULAR SESSION: PROVIDED, THAT SUCH IMPOUNDING OF FUNDS MAY BE WAIVED IN WRITING BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES IN CONNECTION WITH ANY APPROPRIATION OR PORTION OF APPROPRIATION, WHEN, IN HIS JUDGMENT, SUCH ACTION IS NECESSARY AND IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST.

QUESTION 1 (A), SUPRA, IS ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE. IN DECISION OF AUGUST 2, 1932, TO THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, A-42691, A-43276, 12 COMP. GEN. 153, IT WAS HELD:

HOWEVER, SECTION 203 OF THE ECONOMY ACT IS CONCERNED WITH THE SAVING AND IMPOUNDING OF THE AMOUNT OF SALARY OF VACANT POSITIONS AT THE RATES ON THE BASIS OF WHICH APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1933 WERE ESTIMATED. TO ALL POSITIONS OCCUPIED JUNE 30, 1932, OR THEREAFTER, WHICH BECAME VACANT ON OR AFTER JULY 1, 1932, THE AMOUNT OF SALARY TO BE IMPOUNDED IS AT THE RATE PAID THE LAST INCUMBENT IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE PROCEDURE OUTLINED IN THE DECISION OF JULY 12, SUPRA. * * *

QUESTION 1 (B) IS ANSWERED IN THE AFFIRMATIVE. IN DECISION OF AUGUST 5, 1932, A-43585, 12 COMP. GEN. 182, IT WAS STATED:

* * * AS THE FILLING OF A VACANCY WITH PRESIDENTIAL APPROVAL NECESSARILY REQUIRES THE PAYMENT OF THE COMPENSATION OF THAT POSITION TO THE APPOINTEE, THE PRESIDENTIAL AUTHORITY FOR FILLING THE VACANCY MAY BE CONSIDERED, ALSO, AS A WAIVER OF THE IMPOUNDING OF THE SALARY OF THAT POSITION IN SO FAR AS IT IS NECESSARY TO MAKE USE OF SUCH FUNDS FOR PAYMENT TO THE NEW APPOINTEE. IN OTHER WORDS, TO THE EXTENT THAT THE APPROPRIATION FOR THE POSITION IS USED TO PAY THE SALARY OF A PERSON APPOINTED TO FILL THE VACANCY PURSUANT TO THE PRESIDENT'S WRITTEN AUTHORIZATION OR APPROVAL OF THE FILLING OF THE VACANCY, THE APPROPRIATION IS NOT UNEXPENDED BY THE OPERATION OF THE SECTION. HOWEVER, THE IMPOUNDING OF THE SALARY OF THE POSITION COVERING THE TIME THE POSITION REMAINED VACANT IS REQUIRED, UNLESS SUCH IMPOUNDING BE WAIVED SPECIFICALLY IN WRITING BY THE PRESIDENT.

WHILE THAT DECISION WAS RENDERED WITH PARTICULAR REFERENCE TO THE AMOUNT OF SALARY DURING THE PERIOD THE POSITION WAS VACANT, THE PRINCIPLE IS APPLICABLE ALSO TO REQUIRE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE FORMER AND NEW INCUMBENT'S SALARY RATE TO REMAIN IMPOUNDED.

2. THE EFFECT OF THE EXCEPTION OF TEMPORARY, EMERGENCY, AND SEASONAL POSITIONS FROM THE INHIBITION OF SECTION 203 IS THAT THE TERMINATION OF THE SERVICE OF AN EMPLOYEE IN ANY SUCH POSITION DOES NOT CREATE A VACANCY WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE ECONOMY ACT, AND THAT THE USE OF OTHERWISE AVAILABLE APPROPRIATIONS TO MAKE APPOINTMENTS TO SUCH POSITIONS DOES NOT COME WITHIN THE INHIBITION AGAINST THE USE OF APPROPRIATIONS FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 1933 TO PAY COMPENSATION OF INCUMBENTS APPOINTED TO CIVIL POSITIONS. BUT SAID EXCEPTION DOES NOT AUTHORIZE THE USE OF FUNDS OTHERWISE IMPOUNDED AS A RESULT OF A VACANCY IN A REGULAR POSITION. SEE IN THIS CONNECTION THE PROVISION IN THE SECTION WHICH READS:

* * * THE APPROPRIATIONS OR PORTIONS OF APPROPRIATIONS UNEXPENDED BY THE OPERATION OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT BE USED FOR ANY OTHER PURPOSES, BUT SHALL BE IMPOUNDED AND RETURNED TO THE TREASURY. * * *

THEREFORE, NO PART OF THE APPROPRIATION IN THE IMPOUNDED FUND MAY BE USED TO EMPLOY TEMPORARY, EMERGENCY OR SEASONAL EMPLOYEES, UNLESS THE PRESIDENT, UNDER THE AUTHORITY CONTAINED IN THE LAST PROVISO TO THE SECTION, SHOULD EXEMPT ALL OR ANY PARTS OF AN APPROPRIATION FROM THE REQUIREMENT FOR IMPOUNDING.