B-105762, FEBRUARY 12, 1952, 31 COMP. GEN. 375

B-105762: Feb 12, 1952

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1952: REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 21. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE POSITION OF PRISON CORRECTIONAL SUPERVISOR WAS CONVERTED IN DECEMBER. THAT THERE WERE APPROXIMATELY 40 PRISON CORRECTIONAL SUPERVISORS EMPLOYED IN THE VARIOUS FEDERAL PRISONS WHO AT THE TIME THEIR POSITIONS WERE SO CONVERTED HAD BEEN IN THE POSITION FOR AT LEAST 10 YEARS AND WHO HAD BEEN IN THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF CPC-9. THAT UPON CONVERSION SUCH EMPLOYEE WERE. OR RESPONSIBILITIES WAS INVOLVED IN THE GRADE AND SCHEDULE CHANGES OF THESE EMPLOYEES. NOR WAS THERE A GENERAL REALLOCATION TO A HIGHER GRADE BECAUSE OF INCREASED DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES. THE GRADE CHANGE WAS MADE SOLELY AS AN INCIDENT TO THE ADOPTION OF NEW CLASSIFICATION SCHEDULES.

B-105762, FEBRUARY 12, 1952, 31 COMP. GEN. 375

COMPENSATION - CHANGE IN POSITION DESIGNATION - LONGEVITY STEP-INCREASES UNDER CLASSIFICATION ACT, 1949 UNDER SECTION 703 (A) OF THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1949, AUTHORIZING LONGEVITY INCREASES BEYOND THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF A GRADE FOR EACH THREE YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE COMPLETED BY AN EMPLOYEE AT THE MAXIMUM RATE OR AT THE LONGEVITY RATE "WITHOUT CHANGE OF GRADE OR RATE OF BASIC COMPENSATION," A CHANGE IN POSITION DESIGNATION INCIDENT TO THE CONVERSION OF A POSITION FROM THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF CPC-9 TO THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF GS-7, WITH A RESULTING $50 CHANGE IN THE RATE OF COMPENSATION TO CONFORM WITH THE RATES UNDER THE NEW SCHEDULE, DOES NOT START A NEW THREE YEAR LONGEVITY PERIOD OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE WITHIN THE MEANING OF SAID SECTION 703 (A) OF THE ACT.

COMPTROLLER GENERAL WARREN TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL, FEBRUARY 12, 1952:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO LETTER DATED SEPTEMBER 21, 1951 (A3-5), AND ENCLOSURES, FROM THE ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT ATTORNEY GENERAL, REQUESTING A DECISION AS TO WHETHER, UNDER THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES HEREINAFTER RELATED, DAVID A. SAVAGE, PRISON CORRECTIONAL SUPERVISOR, AND CERTAIN OTHER EMPLOYEES IN A SIMILAR CATEGORY MAY RECEIVE CREDIT TOWARD THE THREE YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE REQUIRED FOR A LONGEVITY STEP-INCREASE UNDER SECTION 703 (A) OF THE CLASSIFICATION ACT OF 1949, PUBLIC LAW 429, 63 STAT. 968.

SECTION 703 (A), PUBLIC LAW 429, IN GENERAL, AUTHORIZES LONGEVITY INCREASES BEYOND THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF A GRADE FOR EACH 3 YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE COMPLETED BY AN EMPLOYEE AT THE MAXIMUM RATE OR AT THE LONGEVITY RATE "WITHOUT CHANGE OF GRADE OR RATE OF BASIC COMPENSATION EXCEPT SUCH CHANGE AS MAY BE PRESCRIBED BY ANY PROVISION OF LAW OF GENERAL APPLICATION.' SECTION 703 (B), 64 STAT. 968, IN PART, LIMITS THE INCREASE TO 3 SUCCESSIVE LONGEVITY STEP INCREASES AND REQUIRES AN AGGREGATE OF NOT LESS THAN 10 YEARS OF SERVICE IN THE POSITION OR IN POSITIONS OF EQUIVALENT OR HIGHER CLASS OR GRADE.

THE RECORD SHOWS THAT THE POSITION OF PRISON CORRECTIONAL SUPERVISOR WAS CONVERTED IN DECEMBER, 1949, FROM GRADE CPC-9 TO GRADE GS-7, THAT THERE WERE APPROXIMATELY 40 PRISON CORRECTIONAL SUPERVISORS EMPLOYED IN THE VARIOUS FEDERAL PRISONS WHO AT THE TIME THEIR POSITIONS WERE SO CONVERTED HAD BEEN IN THE POSITION FOR AT LEAST 10 YEARS AND WHO HAD BEEN IN THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF CPC-9, $4,525 PER ANNUM, FOR PERIODS RANGING FROM 3 MONTHS TO 2 YEARS AND 10 MONTHS; AND THAT UPON CONVERSION SUCH EMPLOYEE WERE, UNDER THE RULE APPLICABLE TO CONVERSION, PLACED IN THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE FOR GS-7, $4,575--- AN INCREASE OF $50. ALSO, IT APPEARS THAT NO CHANGE OF POSITION, DUTIES, OR RESPONSIBILITIES WAS INVOLVED IN THE GRADE AND SCHEDULE CHANGES OF THESE EMPLOYEES, NOR WAS THERE A GENERAL REALLOCATION TO A HIGHER GRADE BECAUSE OF INCREASED DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES. THE GRADE CHANGE WAS MADE SOLELY AS AN INCIDENT TO THE ADOPTION OF NEW CLASSIFICATION SCHEDULES.

THE CHANGE OF THE POSITIONS FROM CPC-9 TO GS-7 WAS NOT PRESCRIBED BY ANY PROVISIONS OF LAW. HENCE, THE ONLY QUESTION FOR DETERMINATION IS WHETHER THERE WAS A "CHANGE OF GRADE OR RATE OF BASIC COMPENSATION" WITHIN THE MEANING OF THOSE WORDS AS USED IN SECTION 703 (A), SUPRA.

THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY SHOWS THAT THE POLICY UNDERLYING THE LONGEVITY STEP-INCREASES IS TO PROVIDE REWARDS FOR LONG, FAITHFUL, AND SATISFACTORY SERVICE AFTER AN EMPLOYEE REACHES THE MAXIMUM RATE OF THE GRADE IN WHICH HIS POSITION IS PLACED. AS STATED ABOVE, THE STATUTE EXPRESSLY REQUIRES CERTAIN SERVICE AT OR ABOVE THE MAXIMUM RATE "WITHOUT CHANGE OF GRADE OR RATE OF BASIC PENSATION.' IN THE SITUATION PRESENTED, THE CONVERSION OF THE POSITION FROM GRADE CPC-9 TO GRADE GS 7 DID NOT CONSTITUTE A CHANGE OF GRADE AND THE $50 CHANGE IN THE RATE OF THE COMPENSATION FROM $4,525 TO $4,575, MADE NECESSARY BY THE CONVERSION, IS NOT A CHANGE IN RATE OF BASIC COMPENSATION WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE STATUTE INVOLVED. CF. 29 COMP. GEN. 328. ACCORDINGLY, AND HAVING REGARD FOR THE PURPOSE OF THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 703, ABOVE, THERE APPEARS JUSTIFIED THE CONCLUSION THAT THE CHANGE IN THE POSITION DESIGNATION INCIDENT TO THE CONVERSION OF THE POSITION HERE UNDER CONSIDERATION FROM ONE SCHEDULE TO ANOTHER WITH THE RESULTING CHANGE IN THE RATE OF COMPENSATION TO CONFORM WITH THE RATES UNDER THE NEW SCHEDULE, DID NOT START A NEW 3-YEAR LONGEVITY PERIOD.