B-144701, FEB. 27, 1961

B-144701: Feb 27, 1961

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IN THE EVENT THAT RECLAIM IS DENIED WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF AN ADDITIONAL VOUCHER FOR $18.88 FOR MONETARY VALUE OF EIGHT HOURS' ANNUAL LEAVE USED ON DECEMBER 24. TO ENABLE EMPLOYEES TO HAVE THE ADVANTAGE OF A CONTINUOUS OFF DUTY PERIOD WHEN TUESDAY. WERE HOLIDAYS. IT FURTHER PROVIDED THAT THE ADJUSTMENT WAS NOT APPLICABLE TO THOSE EMPLOYEES WHOSE REGULARLY SCHEDULED OVERTIME WORK WAS REQUIRED ON THE SIXTH DAY OF THE WEEK. THE ADJUSTMENT OF THE WORKWEEK WAS FURTHER AUTHORIZED BY OFFICIAL BULLETIN OF THE MCCLELLAN AIR FORCE BASE WHICH ALSO PROVIDED THAT SUPERVISORS WERE AUTHORIZED TO ESTABLISH INDIVIDUAL EXCEPTIONS TO THE SPECIAL WORKWEEK "WHERE NECESSARY TO PROVIDE ESSENTIAL SERVICE OR TO AVOID FORFEITURE OF ANNUAL LEAVE.'.

B-144701, FEB. 27, 1961

TO ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE OFFICER, DIRECTORATE OF ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE, HEADQUARTERS, U.S. AIR FORCE:

YOUR LETTER OF NOVEMBER 7, 1960, FORWARDED HERE BY THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR OF ACCOUNTING AND FINANCE, HEADQUARTERS UNITED STATES AIR FORCE, FILE AFAAF- 3, REQUESTS OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER YOU MAY PAY THE TRANSMITTED RECLAIM VOUCHER FOR $28.32, COVERING OVERTIME COMPENSATION FOR WORK PERFORMED ON DECEMBER 29, 1951, AND IN THE EVENT THAT RECLAIM IS DENIED WHETHER PAYMENT IS AUTHORIZED OF AN ADDITIONAL VOUCHER FOR $18.88 FOR MONETARY VALUE OF EIGHT HOURS' ANNUAL LEAVE USED ON DECEMBER 24, IN FAVOR OF MR. JACK A. DOSCHER, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE MCCLELLAN AIR FORCE BASE, CALIFORNIA.

THE CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH MR. DOSCHER'S CLAIM AROSE RESULTED FROM A REQUEST BY THE PRESIDENT THAT THE HEAD OF EACH DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY TO THE EXTENT HE FINDS PRACTICABLE, ESTABLISH ADMINISTRATIVE WORKWEEKS FROM TUESDAY THROUGH SATURDAY FOR THE WEEKS BEGINNING DECEMBER 23 AND DECEMBER 30, 1951, TO ENABLE EMPLOYEES TO HAVE THE ADVANTAGE OF A CONTINUOUS OFF DUTY PERIOD WHEN TUESDAY, DECEMBER 25 AND TUESDAY, JANUARY 1 OCCURRING WITHIN THIS PERIOD, WERE HOLIDAYS, TELETYPE DATED DECEMBER 11, 1951, FROM HEADQUARTERS AIR MATERIEL COMMAND, WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, TO THE INSTALLATION POINTS OUT THAT THE PRESIDENT'S REQUEST REFERS TO CASES "WHERE SERVICES OF CIVILIAN EMPLOYEES CAN BE SUSPENDED ON MONDAYS 24 AND 31 DECEMBER 1951 AND 5 JANUARY 1952," AND THE TELETYPE AUTHORIZED AN ADJUSTMENT IN THE WORKWEEKS PURSUANT TO THE PRESIDENT'S REQUEST; HOWEVER, IT FURTHER PROVIDED THAT THE ADJUSTMENT WAS NOT APPLICABLE TO THOSE EMPLOYEES WHOSE REGULARLY SCHEDULED OVERTIME WORK WAS REQUIRED ON THE SIXTH DAY OF THE WEEK. THE ADJUSTMENT OF THE WORKWEEK WAS FURTHER AUTHORIZED BY OFFICIAL BULLETIN OF THE MCCLELLAN AIR FORCE BASE WHICH ALSO PROVIDED THAT SUPERVISORS WERE AUTHORIZED TO ESTABLISH INDIVIDUAL EXCEPTIONS TO THE SPECIAL WORKWEEK "WHERE NECESSARY TO PROVIDE ESSENTIAL SERVICE OR TO AVOID FORFEITURE OF ANNUAL LEAVE.'

MR. DOSCHER WAS CONTINUED ON A REGULAR TOUR OF DUTY, MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY FOR THE FIRST WEEK OF THE PAY PERIOD. HE WAS IN AN ANNUAL LEAVE STATUS ON MONDAY, DECEMBER 24, AND PERFORMED OVERTIME SERVICE ON DECEMBER 29. FOR THE SECOND WEEK OF THE PAY PERIOD, SUNDAY, DECEMBER 30, 1951, TO SATURDAY, JANUARY 5, 1952, HIS TOUR OF DUTY WAS ADJUSTED TO TUESDAY THROUGH SATURDAY. THE INCONSISTENCY BETWEEN THESE TWO WORKWEEKS, AND THE TAKING OF THE ANNUAL LEAVE ON DECEMBER 24, INDICATES THAT THE MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY WORKWEEK FOR THE FIRST WEEK WAS FOR THE PURPOSE OF ENABLING THE EMPLOYEE TO AVOID A FORFEITURE OF ANNUAL LEAVE. THE AMOUNT OF THE OVERTIME RECEIVED WAS REFUNDED BY MR. DOSCHER BECAUSE OF A NOTICE OF EXCEPTION BY OUR OFFICE FOR THE REASON STATED THAT AN EXCEPTION TO AN ESTABLISHED WORKWEEK TO INCREASE THE COMPENSATION PAYABLE TO A SELECTED GROUP OF EMPLOYEES FOR THEIR SOLE BENEFIT AND NOT FOR THE CONVENIENCE OF THE GOVERNMENT IS NOT AUTHORIZED. MR. DOSCHER NOW CLAIMS REIMBURSEMENT OF THE AMOUNT REFUNDED OR REIMBURSEMENT FOR THE MONETARY VALUE OF THE ACCRUAL OF EIGHT HOURS' ANNUAL LEAVE WHICH WAS FORFEITED.

ALTHOUGH YOU SAY THERE IS NO DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE TO SHOW THAT MR. DOSCHER WAS AUTHORIZED TO WORK OVERTIME ON A REGULARLY SCHEDULED BASIS, THE RECORD SHOWS HE WAS PERFORMING OVERTIME DURING THE PAY PERIOD IMMEDIATELY PRECEDING THE ONE INVOLVED IN HIS CLAIM AND DURING SEVERAL IMMEDIATELY SUBSEQUENT PAY PERIODS.

THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE ADJUSTED WORKWEEKS PURSUANT TO THE REQUEST OF THE PRESIDENT WAS PRIMARILY FOR THE BENEFIT OF THE EMPLOYEES INVOLVED AND WAS DISCRETIONARY WITH THE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES AS TO THE PERSONNEL AFFECTED. THE ADMINISTRATIVE ORDERS ISSUED EXCEPTED THOSE EMPLOYEES WHEN REGULARLY SCHEDULED OVERTIME WORK WAS REQUIRED, AND WHEN NECESSARY TO PROVIDE ESSENTIAL SERVICE OR TO AVOID FORFEITURE OF EXCESS ANNUAL LEAVE.

SINCE THE ADJUSTMENT OF THE WORKWEEKS FOR THIS PERIOD WAS A MATTER WITHIN THE ADMINISTRATIVE DISCRETION AND A DETERMINATION CONSISTENT WITH THE ADMINISTRATIVE INSTRUCTIONS WOULD SEEM TO HAVE BEEN MADE IN THIS INSTANCE, THE VOUCHER COVERING REIMBURSEMENT OF THE AMOUNT REFUNDED BY MR. DOSCHER FOR OVERTIME COMPENSATION MAY BE PAID, IF OTHERWISE PROPER. IN VIEW OF THIS ACTION, THE VOUCHER FOR REIMBURSEMENT OF THE MONETARY VALUE OF EIGHT HOURS' ANNUAL LEAVE IS NOT FOR CONSIDERATION AND IS BEING RETAINED HERE.

THE RECLAIM VOUCHER, TOGETHER WITH RELATED PAPERS, IS RETURNED.

YOU ASK WHETHER RECLAIMS WHICH MAY BE RECEIVED FROM THE OTHER SIMILARLY SITUATED EMPLOYEES COVERED BY THE NOTICE OF EXCEPTION MAY BE SETTLED ADMINISTRATIVELY ON THE BASIS OF THIS DECISION. OUR OFFICE WOULD HAVE NO OBJECTION TO SUCH RECLAIMS BEING ADMINISTRATIVELY PROCESSED FOR PAYMENT IF OTHERWISE PROPER.