A-54788, APRIL 10, 1934, 13 COMP. GEN. 272

A-54788: Apr 10, 1934

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HAVE NO EFFECT ON SALARIES OF EMPLOYEES OF EMERGENCY AGENCIES PAID FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY AND MARCH 1934. FROM WHICH THE 15 PERCENT REDUCTION WAS NOT ACTUALLY MADE AND INDICATED ON THE ROLLS PURSUANT TO EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6440. AS FOLLOWS: IN THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION APPOINTMENTS HAVE FROM THE BEGINNING BEEN MADE AT NET SALARY RATES. WHILE THE AMOUNTS WERE FIXED MORE OR LESS ARBITRARILY. AN EFFORT WAS MADE TO MAKE THEM CONSISTENT WITH THE GROSS RATES BEING PAID IN THE REGULAR ESTABLISHMENTS LESS THE 15 PERCENT DEDUCTION REQUIRED BY THE ECONOMY ACT PROVISION. THOUGH NO DEFINITE CLASSIFICATION OF POSITIONS WAS MADE. HAVE NOT YET BEEN APPLIED TO THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION. IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT THEY MAY BE MADE EFFECTIVE AS OF APRIL 1.

A-54788, APRIL 10, 1934, 13 COMP. GEN. 272

COMPENSATION - REFUND OF PERCENTAGE REDUCTION THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 21 (A) OF THE ACT OF MARCH 28, 1934, 48 STAT. 521, REDUCING FROM 15 TO 10, EFFECTIVE FEBRUARY 1, 1934, THE PERCENTAGE REDUCTION FROM COMPENSATION, HAVE NO EFFECT ON SALARIES OF EMPLOYEES OF EMERGENCY AGENCIES PAID FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY AND MARCH 1934, FROM WHICH THE 15 PERCENT REDUCTION WAS NOT ACTUALLY MADE AND INDICATED ON THE ROLLS PURSUANT TO EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6440, OF NOVEMBER 18, 1933, AS EXTENDED BY EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6554, OF JANUARY 10, 1934.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL MCCARL TO THE FEDERAL EMERGENCY ADMINISTRATOR OF PUBLIC WORKS, APRIL 10, 1934:

THERE HAS BEEN RECEIVED YOUR LETTER OF APRIL 4, 1934, AS FOLLOWS:

IN THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION APPOINTMENTS HAVE FROM THE BEGINNING BEEN MADE AT NET SALARY RATES. WHILE THE AMOUNTS WERE FIXED MORE OR LESS ARBITRARILY, AN EFFORT WAS MADE TO MAKE THEM CONSISTENT WITH THE GROSS RATES BEING PAID IN THE REGULAR ESTABLISHMENTS LESS THE 15 PERCENT DEDUCTION REQUIRED BY THE ECONOMY ACT PROVISION, THOUGH NO DEFINITE CLASSIFICATION OF POSITIONS WAS MADE. THE PROVISIONS OF EXECUTIVE ORDER OF NOVEMBER 18, 1933, DIRECTING THAT THE RESPECTIVE HEADS OF THE EMERGENCY ORGANIZATIONS FIX THE RATES IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE SALARY STANDARDIZATION SCHEDULE THEREIN, HAVE NOT YET BEEN APPLIED TO THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION, BUT IT IS ANTICIPATED THAT THEY MAY BE MADE EFFECTIVE AS OF APRIL 1. AT THAT TIME THE SALARIES WILL, UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER, BE SUBJECT TO A REDUCTION EQUIVALENT TO THAT PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2 TITLE II OF THE ACT OF MARCH 30, 1933, AS AMENDED BY THE INDEPENDENT OFFICES APPROPRIATION ACT FOR 1935, APPROVED MARCH 28, 1934. UNDER THE LATTER ACT AMENDING THE 15 PERCENT TO 10 PERCENT BEGINNING FEBRUARY 1, THE EMPLOYEES OF THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION WILL RECEIVE THE BENEFIT OF THE CHANGE IN REDUCTION EFFECTIVE APRIL 1, OR SUCH TIME AS THE PROVISIONS OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER MAY BE PUT INTO EFFECT. THE QUESTION ARISES WHETHER THE ADMINISTRATION WILL BE AUTHORIZED TO PAY TO THOSE EMPLOYEES WHOSE NET SALARIES WERE NOT EQUAL TO THE GROSS SALARY OF THE GRADE TO WHICH THEIR POSITIONS ARE ALLOCATED LESS THE 10 PERCENT DEDUCTION, AN AMOUNT EQUAL TO 5 PERCENT OF THE GROSS SALARY ESTABLISHED, OR SUCH PART THEREOF AS MAY BE A PROPER ADJUSTMENT, FROM FEBRUARY 1 TO THE DATE OF APPLICATION OF THE EXECUTIVE ORDER.

YOUR RULING ON THIS QUESTION IS REQUESTED.

SECTION 21 OF THE INDEPENDENT OFFICES APPROPRIATION ACT FOR 1935, ENACTED MARCH 28, 1934, 48 STAT. 521, PROVIDES, IN PART, AS FOLLOWS:

(A) TITLE II OF THE ACT ENTITLED "AN ACT TO MAINTAIN THE CREDIT OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT," APPROVED MARCH 20, 1933, IS AMENDED AS FOLLOWS:

(1) SECTION 2 IS AMENDED BY INSERTING AFTER "1934" THE FOLLOWING, "AND THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1935; " AND

(2) SECTION 3 (B) IS AMENDED BY STRIKING OUT "15 PERCENTUM" AND INSERTING IN LIEU THEREOF THE FOLLOWING: "10 PERCENTUM DURING THE PORTION OF THE FISCAL YEAR 1934 BEGINNING FEBRUARY 1, 1934, AND ENDING JUNE 30, 1934, AND SHALL NOT EXCEED 5 PERCENTUM DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1935.'

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6440, DATED NOVEMBER 18, 1933, AFTER LISTING THE EMERGENCY AGENCIES TO WHICH IT WAS TO BE APPLICABLE, INCLUDING THE PUBLIC WORKS ADMINISTRATION, AND PRESCRIBING A SCHEDULE OF SALARY RATES, CORRESPONDING TO CLASSIFICATION ACT SALARY RATES, PROVIDED AS FOLLOWS:

IN ALL CASES NOT SUBJECT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 2, TITLE II, OF THE ACT OF MARCH 20, 1933 (PUBLIC, NO. 2, 73D CONG.), THE RATES PAYABLE UNDER THIS SCHEDULE SHALL BE DECREASED BY THE AMOUNT, IF ANY, BY WHICH SUCH RATE WOULD BE REDUCED PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SAID SECTION 2 IF SUCH SECTION WERE APPLICABLE. ALL APPOINTMENTS HEREAFTER SHALL STIPULATE THAT THE RATE TO BE PAID THEREUNDER SHALL BE THE APPROPRIATE SPECIFIC RATE OF THE SCHEDULE LESS THE AMOUNT, IF ANY, BY WHICH SUCH RATE WOULD BE REDUCED PURSUANT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SAID SECTION 2 IF SUCH SECTION WERE APPLICABLE.

THE PORTION QUOTED FROM SECTION 21 OF SAID ACT OF MARCH 28, 1934, CAN HAVE NO APPLICATION TO EMPLOYEES WHOSE COMPENSATION WAS OR IS NOT ADJUSTED PURSUANT TO THE TERMS OF SECTIONS 2 AND 3 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 20, 1933, 48 STAT. 12, OF WHICH IT CONSTITUTES AN AMENDMENT. THEREFORE, IF THE SALARIES OF EMPLOYEES IN EMERGENCY AGENCIES WERE NOT ADJUSTED, EFFECTIVE PRIOR TO APRIL 1, 1934, PURSUANT TO EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6440, DATED NOVEMBER 18, 1933, AS EXTENDED TO OTHER EMERGENCY AGENCIES BY EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 6554, DATED JANUARY 10, 1934, SO AS TO PROVIDE A FIXED SALARY LESS A PERCENTAGE REDUCTION TO CORRESPOND WITH THE PERCENTAGE REDUCTION PROVIDED FOR UNDER SECTIONS 2 AND 3 OF THE ACT OF MARCH 20, 1933, SUPRA, AS AMENDED, THERE IS NO BASIS OR AUTHORITY UNDER WHICH SAID EMPLOYEES MAY BE PAID EITHER FIVE PERCENT OR ANY OTHER AMOUNT OF COMPENSATION IN ADDITION TO THAT ALREADY RECEIVED FOR THE PERIOD FEBRUARY 1 TO MARCH 31, 1934, INCLUSIVE, OR FOR ANY PERIOD PRIOR TO THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION UNDER THE EXECUTIVE ORDERS. IN OTHER WORDS, THE PROVISION IN THE ACT OF MARCH 28, 1934, REDUCING FROM 15 TO 10, EFFECTIVE FEBRUARY 1, 1934, THE PERCENTAGE REDUCTION FROM CERTAIN SALARIES, HAS NO EFFECT WHATEVER ON SALARIES PAID FOR FEBRUARY AND MARCH 1934, FROM WHICH THE 15 PERCENT REDUCTION WAS NOT ACTUALLY MADE AND INDICATED ON THE ROLLS.