B-154063, JAN. 21, 1965

B-154063: Jan 21, 1965

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FELL ON SATURDAY IT WAS NECESSARY TO ESTABLISH A WORK WEEK FOR EMPLOYEES WHOSE SERVICES WOULD BE REQUIRED ON THE PRECEDING DAY.'. IT IS AN ADVISORY MEMORANDUM FROM THE COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS TO SURVEYOR OF CUSTOMS AND DIVISION HEADS REMINDING THEM THAT SINCE THE HOLIDAYS OF FEBRUARY 22. THE MEMORANDUM IS IN ACCORD WITH SECTION 27.44 (A) (E) OF THE CUSTOMS MANUAL. WHICH IS QUOTED IN EACH OF THE SETTLEMENTS. HARRINGTON IS SAID TO HAVE BEEN GRANTED MAY 25. MCGOWAN APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN GRANTED FEBRUARY 20. AS DISCLOSED BY THE RECORD WAS GRANTED COMPENSATORY TIME OFF ON APRIL 16. THE VALIDITY OF THAT SECTION (27.44 (A) (E) OF THE CUSTOMS MANUAL) WAS THE SUBJECT OF OUR AFFIRMATIVE OPINION OF NOVEMBER 20.

B-154063, JAN. 21, 1965

TO MR. LEONARD J. MEISELMAN, MEISELMAN, MISHKIN AND REILLY, ATTORNEYS AT LAW:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 23, 1964, CONCERNING GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE SETTLEMENTS OF DECEMBER 9, 1964, WHICH DISALLOWED THE RESPECTIVE CLAIMS OF WILLIAM J. HARRINGTON AND JAMES MCGOWAN FOR HOLIDAY PAY UNDER THE ACT OF FEBRUARY 13, 1911, 19 U.S.C. 267 AND 1451, FOR SERVICES RENDERED BY THEM ON FEBRUARY 21 AND MAY 29, 1964, RESPECTIVELY, AS INSPECTIONAL EMPLOYEES OF THE BUREAU OF CUSTOMS.

THE SECOND PARAGRAPH OF CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENT TO WHICH YOU DIRECT OUR ATTENTION, READS IN PART AS FOLLOWS:

"THE FILE SHOWS THAT THE COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS, BY MEMORANDUM DATED JANUARY 8, 1964, NOTIFIED ALL INSPECTORS THAT SINCE FEBRUARY 22, 1964, FELL ON SATURDAY IT WAS NECESSARY TO ESTABLISH A WORK WEEK FOR EMPLOYEES WHOSE SERVICES WOULD BE REQUIRED ON THE PRECEDING DAY.'

AS A MATTER OF FACT CUSTOMS BUREAU MEMORANDUM OF JANUARY 8, 1964, TO WHICH THE CLAIMS DIVISION SETTLEMENTS REFER NEITHER GIVES NOTICE TO CUSTOMS INSPECTORS OF THE CHANGES IN WORKWEEKS NOR DOES IT PURPORT TO GIVE SUCH NOTICE. RATHER, IT IS AN ADVISORY MEMORANDUM FROM THE COLLECTOR OF CUSTOMS TO SURVEYOR OF CUSTOMS AND DIVISION HEADS REMINDING THEM THAT SINCE THE HOLIDAYS OF FEBRUARY 22, MAY 30 AND JULY 4 FELL ON SATURDAY IN 1964, CHANGES IN THE BASIC WORKWEEKS OF INSPECTORS, MARINE CLERKS, ETC., WOULD BE REQUIRED FOR THE WEEKS IN WHICH THE HOLIDAYS OCCURRED. THE MEMORANDUM IS IN ACCORD WITH SECTION 27.44 (A) (E) OF THE CUSTOMS MANUAL.

SECTION 27.44 (A) (E) OF THE CUSTOMS MANUAL PROMULGATED IN SEPTEMBER 1960, AND AMENDED MAY 24, 1963, WHICH IS QUOTED IN EACH OF THE SETTLEMENTS, PROVIDES THAT WHEN A HOLIDAY FALLS ON A SATURDAY OR ON A DAY OFF IN LIEU OF SATURDAY, SUCH HOLIDAY SHALL BE SCHEDULED AS A DAY WITHIN THE WORKWEEK FOR ALL CUSTOMS EMPLOYEES. IN ACCORDANCE WITH THAT REGULATION MR. HARRINGTON IS SAID TO HAVE BEEN GRANTED MAY 25, 1964, AS A DAY OFF IN LIEU OF SATURDAY AND APPARENTLY RENDERED NO SERVICE EITHER ON THAT DAY OR ON SATURDAY, MAY 30. MR. MCGOWAN APPEARS TO HAVE BEEN GRANTED FEBRUARY 20, 1964, OFF IN LIEU OF SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 1964, AND AS DISCLOSED BY THE RECORD WAS GRANTED COMPENSATORY TIME OFF ON APRIL 16, AT HIS EXPRESS REQUEST, INSTEAD OF COMPENSATION, FOR SERVICES RENDERED ON FEBRUARY 20, 1964. IT DOES NOT APPEAR THAT HE RENDERED ANY SERVICE ON SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 1964.

THE VALIDITY OF THAT SECTION (27.44 (A) (E) OF THE CUSTOMS MANUAL) WAS THE SUBJECT OF OUR AFFIRMATIVE OPINION OF NOVEMBER 20, 1964, TO MR. JOHN J. MURPHY, PRESIDENT OF THE NATIONAL CUSTOMS SERVICE ASSOCIATION, IN RESPONSE TO HIS INQUIRY OF APRIL 27, 1964. A COPY OF OUR LETTER TO MR. MURPHY IS ENCLOSED.

WE HOPE THAT THE FOREGOING EXPLANATION WILL CORRECT THE MISUNDERSTANDING CREATED BY OFFICE SETTLEMENT LETTERS OF DECEMBER 9, 1964.