B-145856, MAY 29, 1961

B-145856: May 29, 1961

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THE WAGE BOARD RATE FOR OVERTIME IS HIGHER THAN THAT AT GS- 12. THE FACTS IN THE RECORD ARE AS FOLLOWS: MR. SAMPOGNA WAS SELECTED FROM A LIST OF QUALIFIED CANDIDATES FOR THE POSITION OF ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT THROUGH THE BUREAU PROMOTION PROGRAM. THE LIST WAS RETURNED TO THE DIVISION OF PERSONNEL AND SAFETY WITH A VERBAL REQUEST BY THE REPRODUCTION DIVISION TO APPOINT MR. ACTION WAS INITIATED TO EFFECT THE REASSIGNMENT ON NOVEMBER 27. THE PERSONNEL AND SAFETY DIVISION WAS INFORMED BY TELEPHONE DURING THE AFTERNOON OF THIS SITUATION. WAS NOT DELAYED BUT WAS MADE EFFECTIVE ON NOVEMBER 27. REVISION OF THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE APPOINTMENT WAS REQUESTED IN A MEMORANDUM DATED JANUARY 13. A PERSONNEL ACTION WAS TAKEN TO CORRECT THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE REASSIGNMENT FROM NOVEMBER 27 TO DECEMBER 11.

B-145856, MAY 29, 1961

TO MR. JAMES F. BARRINGTON, AUTHORIZED CERTIFYING OFFICER, COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY:

ON MAY 11, 1961, YOU REQUESTED OUR DECISION WHETHER YOU MAY CERTIFY FOR PAYMENT A SUPPLEMENTAL VOUCHER IN FAVOR OF MR. NICHOLAS F. SAMPOGNA, AN EMPLOYEE OF THE COAST AND GEODETIC SURVEY, DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE, FOR $65.56.

THE VOUCHER COVERS AN AMOUNT DUE MR. SAMPOGNA AS A RESULT OF AN ADMINISTRATIVE ACTION RETROACTIVELY CHANGING THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF HIS REASSIGNMENT FROM CHIEF, TYPE SERVICE BRANCH, REPRODUCTION DIVISION, WAGE BOARD 28-3, $9,734.40 PER ANNUM, TO ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT, REPRODUCTION DIVISION, GS-12, $9,735 PER ANNUM, FROM NOVEMBER 27, 1960, TO DECEMBER 11, 1960. MR. SAMPOGNA WORKED 28 HOURS OVERTIME BETWEEN NOVEMBER 27 AND DECEMBER 11. THE WAGE BOARD RATE FOR OVERTIME IS HIGHER THAN THAT AT GS- 12. THE AMOUNT DUE ON THE VOUCHER REPRESENTS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PAYMENT AT THE WAGE BOARD AND GS-12 RATES INCLUDING OVERTIME COMPENSATION.

THE FACTS IN THE RECORD ARE AS FOLLOWS: MR. SAMPOGNA WAS SELECTED FROM A LIST OF QUALIFIED CANDIDATES FOR THE POSITION OF ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT THROUGH THE BUREAU PROMOTION PROGRAM. ON NOVEMBER 25, 1960, THE LIST WAS RETURNED TO THE DIVISION OF PERSONNEL AND SAFETY WITH A VERBAL REQUEST BY THE REPRODUCTION DIVISION TO APPOINT MR. SAMPOGNA TO THIS POSITION AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. ACTION WAS INITIATED TO EFFECT THE REASSIGNMENT ON NOVEMBER 27, 1960. SUBSEQUENT CONVERSATION WITH MR. SAMPOGNA ON THE SAME DAY REVEALED THAT, BECAUSE OF AN EXTREMELY HEAVY WORKLOAD IN THE TYPE SERVICE BRANCH, HIS SERVICES WOULD BE REQUIRED IN THAT BRANCH DURING THE PERIOD NOVEMBER 27 TO DECEMBER 11, AND THAT HE HAD PREVIOUSLY BEEN AUTHORIZED TO WORK OVERTIME DURING THAT PERIOD. THE PERSONNEL AND SAFETY DIVISION WAS INFORMED BY TELEPHONE DURING THE AFTERNOON OF THIS SITUATION. AT THAT TIME THE REPRODUCTION DIVISION REQUESTED THAT THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE APPOINTMENT BE DELAYED UNTIL DECEMBER 11, 1960. THE APPOINTMENT, HOWEVER, WAS NOT DELAYED BUT WAS MADE EFFECTIVE ON NOVEMBER 27, 1960, AS ORIGINALLY REQUESTED. MR. SAMPOGNA PERFORMED THE DUTIES OF CHIEF, TYPE SERVICE BRANCH DURING THE PERIOD NOVEMBER 27 TO DECEMBER 11. REVISION OF THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE APPOINTMENT WAS REQUESTED IN A MEMORANDUM DATED JANUARY 13, 1961, FROM THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER, OFFICE OF CARTOGRAPHY, TO THE CHIEF, PERSONNEL AND SAFETY DIVISION. ON APRIL 19, 1961, A PERSONNEL ACTION WAS TAKEN TO CORRECT THE EFFECTIVE DATE OF THE REASSIGNMENT FROM NOVEMBER 27 TO DECEMBER 11, 1960, ON THE BASIS OF ADMINISTRATIVE ERROR.

IT HAS LONG BEEN THE RULE OF OUR OFFICE THAT A PERSONNEL ACTION MAY NOT BE MADE RETROACTIVELY EFFECTIVE SO AS TO INCREASE THE RIGHT OF AN EMPLOYEE TO COMPENSATION. 40 COMP. GEN. 207, B-144022, OCTOBER 11, 1960. EXCEPTIONS HAVE BEEN MADE TO THIS RULE WHERE THROUGH BONA FIDE ADMINISTRATIVE ERROR A PERSONNEL ACTION WAS NOT EFFECTED AS INTENDED. SEE 31 COMP. GEN. 15; 34 COMP. GEN. 380.

IT APPEARS FROM THE REPORT THAT THE PROCESSING OF MR. SAMPOGNA'S APPOINTMENT EFFECTIVE NOVEMBER 27 RATHER THAN ON NOVEMBER 11 WAS CONTRARY TO THE INTENTION OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE AND THE UNDERSTANDING OF THE EMPLOYEE AND WAS THE RESULT OF A BONA FIDE ERROR. THEREFORE, THE VOUCHER, WHICH IS RETURNED HEREWITH, MAY BE CERTIFIED FOR PAYMENT.