A-80429, SEPTEMBER 15, 1936, 16 COMP. GEN. 250

A-80429: Sep 15, 1936

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IS FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION BEFORE PRESENTATION TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE FOR FINAL DETERMINATION. IT IS PROVIDED AS FOLLOWS: "IN ORDER TO CARRY OUT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT THE ADMINISTRATOR MAY ACCEPT AND UTILIZE SUCH VOLUNTARY AND UNCOMPENSATED SERVICES OF FEDERAL. LOCAL OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES AS ARE AVAILABLE. THERE ARE FIVE PERSONS NOW EMPLOYED BY THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ADMINISTRATION. APPENDED TO THIS LETTER IS A STATEMENT OF THE RESPECTIVE DUTIES TO WHICH THESE PERSONS WILL BE ASSIGNED AND A STATEMENT OF THEIR SPECIAL QUALIFICATIONS. IF IT IS CONSISTENT WITH YOUR PROCEDURE. BEFORE SUCH PERSONS ARE EMPLOYED. AN EARLY DECISION WILL BE APPRECIATED.

A-80429, SEPTEMBER 15, 1936, 16 COMP. GEN. 250

EXPERTS - QUALIFICATIONS - DETERMINATION PRIMARILY FOR CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION THE MATTER AS TO WHETHER PERSONS EMPLOYED BY THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ADMINISTRATION MAY BE APPOINTED AS "EXPERTS" UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 11 OF THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ACT OF 1936, 49 STAT. 1366, IS FOR CONSIDERATION BY THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION BEFORE PRESENTATION TO THE GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE FOR FINAL DETERMINATION.

ACTING COMPTROLLER GENERAL ELLIOTT TO THE ADMINISTRATOR, RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ADMINISTRATION, SEPTEMBER 15, 1936:

CONSIDERATION HAS BEEN GIVEN TO YOUR LETTER OF AUGUST 25, 1936, AS FOLLOWS:

UNDER SECTION 11 OF THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ACT OF 1936 (PUBLIC RES. NO. 605, 74TH CONGRESS), IT IS PROVIDED AS FOLLOWS:

"IN ORDER TO CARRY OUT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT THE ADMINISTRATOR MAY ACCEPT AND UTILIZE SUCH VOLUNTARY AND UNCOMPENSATED SERVICES OF FEDERAL, STATE, AND LOCAL OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES AS ARE AVAILABLE, AND HE MAY WITHOUT REGARD TO THE PROVISIONS OF CIVIL-SERVICE LAWS APPLICABLE TO OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES OF THE UNITED STATES APPOINT AND FIX THE COMPENSATION OF ATTORNEYS, ENGINEERS, AND EXPERTS, AND HE MAY, SUBJECT TO THE CIVIL-SERVICE LAWS, APPOINT SUCH OTHER OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES AS HE MAY FIND NECESSARY AND PRESCRIBE THEIR DUTIES.'

THERE ARE FIVE PERSONS NOW EMPLOYED BY THE RURAL ELECTRIFICATION ADMINISTRATION, ESTABLISHED UNDER THE EMERGENCY RELIEF APPROPRIATION ACT OF 1935, WHOM I DESIRE TO APPOINT AS "EXPERTS" UNDER THE ABOVE PROVISION OF THE ACT OF 1936. APPENDED TO THIS LETTER IS A STATEMENT OF THE RESPECTIVE DUTIES TO WHICH THESE PERSONS WILL BE ASSIGNED AND A STATEMENT OF THEIR SPECIAL QUALIFICATIONS.

IF IT IS CONSISTENT WITH YOUR PROCEDURE, I WOULD APPRECIATE AT THIS TIME, AND BEFORE SUCH PERSONS ARE EMPLOYED, A DETERMINATION BY YOU AS TO THEIR STATUS AS "EXPERTS" UNDER THE PROVISION QUOTED ABOVE. I DESIRE TO MAKE THE APPOINTMENTS AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, AND AN EARLY DECISION WILL BE APPRECIATED.

IN DECISION OF JANUARY 18, 1934, 13 COMP. GEN. 199, 200, WHEREIN WAS CONSIDERED THE EMPLOYMENT OF "EXPERTS" UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 10 (A) OF THE AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ACT OF MAY 12, 1933, 48 STAT. 37, IT WAS HELD AS FOLLOWS:

THE TERM "OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES" USED IN THE STATUTE IS BROAD AND WAS CLEARLY INTENDED TO INCLUDE ALL PERSONNEL OF THE AGRICULTURAL ADJUSTMENT ADMINISTRATION WITH THE EXCEPTION OF SUCH EXPERTS IN PARTICULAR LINES OF ENDEAVOR PECULIARLY REQUIRED BY THE ADMINISTRATION AS MAY BE NECESSARY TO ACCOMPLISH THE PURPOSES OF THE ACT--- AS, FOR INSTANCE, TECHNICAL AGRICULTURAL EXPERTS EMPLOYED AS CONSULTANTS OR ON SPECIAL ASSIGNMENTS. THIS IS THE SENSE IN WHICH THE TERM ,EXPERT" IS GENERALLY USED IN STATUTES. SEE SECTION 5 (A) OF THE ACT OF JANUARY 21, 1927, 44 STAT. 1021; THE ITEM "DEFENDING SUITS IN CLAIMS AGAINST THE UNITED STATES," ACT OF MARCH 1, 1933, 47 STAT. 1380; AND THE ITEM "COLLECTING THE INTERNAL REVENUE," ACT OF MARCH 3, 1933, 47 STAT. 1494. THE LAST-MENTIONED ITEM, PROVIDING FOR EXPERTS, WAS CONSIDERED IN DECISION OF DECEMBER 9, 1933, A- 52029, 13 COMP. GEN. 167.

IN DECISION OF JULY 25, 1934, 14 COMP. GEN. 70, 71, WHEREIN WAS CONSIDERED THE EMPLOYMENT OF ,EXPERTS" UNDER THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 4 (B) OF THE SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934, APPROVED JUNE 5, 1934, 48 STAT. 881, IT WAS HELD, AS FOLLOWS:

THERE IS STATED IN THE QUOTED STATUTORY PROVISIONS THE AUTHORITY FOR APPOINTING AND FIXING THE RATES OF COMPENSATION OF TWO SEPARATE AND DISTINCT CLASSES OF PERSONNEL, VIZ: (1) "OFFICERS, ATTORNEYS, EXAMINERS, AND OTHER EXPERTS," I.E., OFFICERS, ATTORNEYS, EXAMINERS, ETC., WHEN THE DUTIES INVOLVED REQUIRE THE SERVICES OF PERSONS QUALIFYING AS "EXPERT" IN THE PARTICULAR LINE; AND (2) "OTHER OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES.' THAT THE TWO CLASSES ARE NOT INTENDED TO BE REGARDED ON THE BASIS OF THE SAME DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES IS CLEARLY SHOWN FROM THE FACT THAT THE CONGRESS HAS AUTHORIZED SEPARATE PROCEDURES FOR THEIR EMPLOYMENT AND FOR FIXING THEIR RATES OF COMPENSATION. WHERE A STATUTE AUTHORIZES THE EMPLOYMENT OF BOTH "EXPERTS" AND OTHER "OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES," IT MUST BE REGARDED THAT THE TERM "EXPERTS" IS INTENDED TO INCLUDE ONLY THOSE EXCEPTIONALLY QUALIFIED BY EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE IN A PARTICULAR LINE TO PERFORM A SPECIAL SERVICE ESSENTIAL TO ACCOMPLISHMENT OF THE LEGISLATIVE PURPOSE--- AND WHO ARE NOT, GENERALLY, OBTAINABLE UNDER OPERATION OF THE CIVIL-SERVICE LAWS AND REGULATIONS.

THESE DECISIONS WERE INTENDED TO STATE THE GENERAL RULES FOR THE GUIDANCE OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICERS AND THE UNITED STATES CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION. YOUR SUBMISSION DOES NOT DISCLOSE WHETHER THE MATTER OF THESE PARTICULAR APPOINTMENTS HAS BEEN TAKEN UP WITH THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION AND WHETHER THAT COMMISSION HAS CONCURRED IN YOUR VIEW THAT THE POSITIONS REFERRED TO ARE OF A CLASS REQUIRING THE SERVICES OF "EXPERTS" AND THAT THE QUALIFICATIONS OF THE PROPOSED APPOINTEES ARE SUCH AS TO ENTITLE THEM TO BE APPOINTED AS "EXPERTS.' ACCORDINGLY, IT IS SUGGESTED THAT YOU ASCERTAIN THE VIEWS OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION WITH RESPECT TO THESE MATTERS BEFORE PRESENTING SAME TO THIS OFFICE FOR FINAL DETERMINATION.