B-145810, MAY 22, 1961

B-145810: May 22, 1961

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YOU POINT OUT THAT BASED UPON YOUR SERVICE RECORD YOU FEEL YOU WERE ENTITLED TO A LONGEVITY STEP INCREASE EFFECTIVE MAY 17. THE DATE YOU WERE DEMOTED FROM THE FIFTH STEP OF GRADE GS-6. EACH DEPARTMENT SHALL GRANT AN ADDITIONAL STEP- INCREASE * * * BEYOND THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF THE GRADE IN WHICH HIS POSITION IS PLACED. TO EACH * * * EMPLOYEE FOR EACH THREE YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE COMPLETED BY HIM AT SUCH MAXIMUM RATE OR AT A RATE IN EXCESS THEREOF AUTHORIZED BY THIS SECTION WITHOUT INCREASE IN GRADE * * "/B) (6) THE * * * EMPLOYEE SHALL HAVE HAD. AS FOLLOWS: "LONGEVITY PERIOD IS THREE YEARS. TO QUALIFY IN YOUR CASE UNDER THE FOREGOING PROVISIONS YOU MUST HAVE HAD (1) 10 YEARS AGGREGATE SERVICE IN GRADE GS-5 OR IN EQUIVALENT OR HIGHER GRADES AND (2) 3 YEARS CONTINUOUS SERVICE AT THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF GRADE GS-5.

B-145810, MAY 22, 1961

TO MR. GEORGE D. TOMPKINS:

YOUR LETTER DATED MARCH 1961, TO THE "CHAIRMAN OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CIVIL SERVICE COMMITTEE," HAS BEEN REFERRED HERE FOR CONSIDERATION AND DIRECT REPLY TO YOU. YOU POINT OUT THAT BASED UPON YOUR SERVICE RECORD YOU FEEL YOU WERE ENTITLED TO A LONGEVITY STEP INCREASE EFFECTIVE MAY 17, 1959, THE DATE YOU WERE DEMOTED FROM THE FIFTH STEP OF GRADE GS-6, $5,090 PER ANNUM, TO GRADE GS-5, MAXIMUM STEP, $4,940 PER ANNUM. YOU CLAIM THE DIFFERENCE, $150 PER ANNUM, FOR THE PERIOD MAY 17, 1959, TO DATE.

YOUR RECORD SHOWS THE FOLLOWING PERIODS OF SERVICE:

TABLE

PERIOD GRADE STEP IN GRADE

10-23-42 - 21-5-43 CPC-5

2-16-43 - 8-12-45 CPC-6

8-13-45 - 8-24-46 CPC-7 1ST

8-25-46 - 6-22-47 CPC-5

6-23-47 - 3-26-50 CPC-4

3-27-50 - 9-10-50 CPC-5

9-11-50 - 9-24-50 CPC-6

9-25-50 - 9-19-54 CPC-7 3RD

9-20-54 - 2-20-55 CPC-7 MAX.

2-21-50 - 10-1-55 GS-5 6TH

10- 2-55 - 9-27-58 GS-5 MAX.

9-28-58 - 5-16-59 GS-6 5TH

5-17-59 TO DATE GS-5 MAX.

5 U.S.C. 1123 PROVIDES, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS:

"/A) SUBJECT TO SUBSECTION (B) OF THIS SECTION, AND AS A REWARD FOR LONG AND FAITHFUL SERVICE, EACH DEPARTMENT SHALL GRANT AN ADDITIONAL STEP- INCREASE * * * BEYOND THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF THE GRADE IN WHICH HIS POSITION IS PLACED, TO EACH * * * EMPLOYEE FOR EACH THREE YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE COMPLETED BY HIM AT SUCH MAXIMUM RATE OR AT A RATE IN EXCESS THEREOF AUTHORIZED BY THIS SECTION WITHOUT INCREASE IN GRADE * *

"/B) (6) THE * * * EMPLOYEE SHALL HAVE HAD, IN THE AGGREGATE, NOT LESS THAN TEN YEARS OF SERVICE IN THE POSITION WHICH HE THEN OCCUPIES, OR IN POSITIONS OF EQUIVALENT OR HIGHER CLASS OR GRADE.'

SECTION 25.52 (D), FEDERAL EMPLOYEES PAY REGULATIONS, PAGE Z1-316, FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL, READS, IN PERTINENT PART, AS FOLLOWS:

"LONGEVITY PERIOD IS THREE YEARS, OF THE AGGREGATE PERIOD, OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE IN A CLASSIFICATION ACT POSITION: (1) AT THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF THE EMPLOYEE'S GRADE; OR (2) AT A LONGEVITY RATE OF THE EMPLOYEE'S GRADE; OR (3) AT A RATE IN EXCESS OF SUCH MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE IN ACCORDANCE WITH A PROVISION OF LAW; OR (4) AT ANY OF THE RATES SPECIFIED IN (1), (2), OR (3) OF THIS PARAGRAPH, IN A GRADE HIGHER THAN HIS CURRENT GRADE * * *.'

THEREFORE, TO QUALIFY IN YOUR CASE UNDER THE FOREGOING PROVISIONS YOU MUST HAVE HAD (1) 10 YEARS AGGREGATE SERVICE IN GRADE GS-5 OR IN EQUIVALENT OR HIGHER GRADES AND (2) 3 YEARS CONTINUOUS SERVICE AT THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED RATE OF GRADE GS-5.

CONCERNING THE AGGREGATE PERIOD, YOUR SERVICE IN CPC-7 REPRESENTED SERVICE IN AN EQUIVALENT GRADE WHILE YOUR SERVICE IN GRADE GS-6 REPRESENTED SERVICE IN A HIGHER GRADE. SUCH SERVICE IS CREDITABLE TOWARD THE 10-YEAR AGGREGATE SERVICE REQUIREMENT. THEREFORE, THE SERVICE IN CPC- 7, FIRST STEP, FROM AUGUST 13, 1945, TO AUGUST 25, 1946, AMOUNTING TO 1 YEAR AND 12 DAYS IS CREDITABLE TOWARD THE 10-YEAR AGGREGATE PERIOD. ALSO CREDITABLE TOWARD THE AGGREGATE PERIOD IS THE SUBSEQUENT SERVICE BEGINNING ON SEPTEMBER 25, 1950, RENDERED BY YOU IN GRADE CPC-7, GRADE GS-5 AND GRADE GS-6. ACCORDING TO OUR COMPUTATION THE REQUIRED 10-YEAR AGGREGATE SERVICE WAS COMPLETED BY YOU ON SEPTEMBER 13, 1959, RATHER THAN ON AUGUST 12, 1959, AS STATED BY YOU.

HOWEVER, IN YOUR CASE TO BE ENTITLED TO A LONGEVITY STEP-INCREASE IT IS ALSO NECESSARY TO COMPLETE 3 YEARS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE AT THE MAXIMUM RATE OF GRADE GS-5. THE RECORD SHOWS THAT YOU REACHED THE MAXIMUM STEP OF GRADE CPC-7, A GRADE EQUIVALENT TO GS-5, ON SEPTEMBER 20, 1954. BUT, UPON THE ADMINISTRATIVE CONVERSION OF YOUR CPC-7 POSITION ON FEBRUARY 21, 1955, TO GRADE GS-5, AS REQUIRED BY SECTION 106 OF THE ACT OF SEPTEMBER 1, 1954, PUBLIC LAW 763, 68 STAT. 1107, YOUR SALARY WAS ADJUSTED, AS PROVIDED IN THAT ACT, TO THE SIXTH STEP OF GRADE GS-5, NOT THE MAXIMUM STEP. THEREFORE, THE PERIOD OF SERVICE IN GRADE CPC-7, MAXIMUM STEP, WAS NOT CONTINUOUS FOR 3 YEARS AND IT CANNOT BE CREDITED TOWARDS A LONGEVITY PERIOD.

YOU REACHED THE MAXIMUM STEP OF GRADE GS-5 ON OCTOBER 2, 1955, AND REMAINED AT THAT STEP UNTIL YOU WERE PROMOTED TO GRADE GS-6, FIFTH STEP, ON SEPTEMBER 28, 1958. THE PROMOTION AGAIN INTERRUPTED THE CONTINUITY OF THE 3-YEAR LONGEVITY PERIOD AT THE MAXIMUM SCHEDULED STEP OF GRADE GS-5. SUCH PERIOD OF SERVICE AT THE MAXIMUM STEP OF GRADE GS-5 AMOUNTED TO BUT 2 YEARS, 11 MONTHS AND 26 DAYS AND THEREFORE DID NOT MEET THE REQUIREMENT FOR THREE CONTINUOUS YEARS AT THE MAXIMUM RATE OF GRADE GS-5. UNDER THE ABOVE-QUOTED PROVISIONS OF 5 U.S.C. 1123 YOUR PROMOTION OF SEPTEMBER 28, 1958, WAS AN INCREASE IN GRADE CAUSING THE FORFEITURE OF THE 2 YEARS, 11 MONTHS AND 26 DAYS OF CONTINUOUS SERVICE TOWARDS YOUR LONGEVITY PERIOD OF THREE CONTINUOUS YEARS IN GRADE GS-5. FURTHER, SINCE YOUR SERVICE IN GRADE GS-6 WAS NOT AT THE MAXIMUM STEP OR LONGEVITY STEP THERE IS NO BASIS UNDER THE FOREGOING REGULATIONS FOR COUNTING SUCH SERVICE TOWARDS A LONGEVITY PERIOD IN GRADE GS-5. HENCE, UPON YOUR DEMOTION ON MAY 17, 1959, TO THE MAXIMUM STEP OF GRADE GS-5, YOUR LONGEVITY PERIOD OF THREE CONTINUOUS YEARS STARTED ANEW. 35 COMP. GEN. 121.

THEREFORE, YOU WILL NOT BE ENTITLED TO A LONGEVITY STEP-INCREASE IN GRADE GS-5 UNTIL YOU SHALL HAVE COMPLETED THREE CONTINUOUS YEARS OF SERVICE AT THE MAXIMUM RATE THEREOF BEGINNING MAY 17, 1959. ON THE PRESENT RECORD THERE IS NO LAWFUL BASIS FOR ALLOWANCE OF YOUR CLAIM.