B-165742, DECEMBER 23, 1968, 48 COMP. GEN. 437

B-165742: Dec 23, 1968

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IS NOT ELIGIBLE TO ACCRUE THE 45 DAYS OF ANNUAL LEAVE AUTHORIZED BY 5 U.S.C. 6304 FOR INDIVIDUALS RECRUITED OR TRANSFERRED FROM THE UNITED STATES OR ITS TERRITORIES OR POSSESSIONS FOR EMPLOYMENT OUTSIDE THE AREA OF RECRUITMENT OR FROM WHICH TRANSFERRED. ALTHOUGH THE EMPLOYEE WAS ASSIGNED TO NEW YORK HE DID NOT CHANGE HIS PERMANENT RESIDENCE FROM PUERTO RICO TO ANY POINT IN THE UNITED STATES WHERE HE WOULD BE EXPECTED TO TAKE HOME LEAVE AND. 1968: THIS IS IN REPLY TO LETTER OF DECEMBER 2. CINTRON IS ELIGIBLE TO ACCUMULATE 45 DAYS OF ANNUAL LEAVE. WAS RECRUITED AS A POSTAL INSPECTOR ON SEPTEMBER 19. PONCE WAS CONSIDERED HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION DURING THE INITIAL TRAINING HE RECEIVED IN THE UNITED STATES.

B-165742, DECEMBER 23, 1968, 48 COMP. GEN. 437

LEAVES OF ABSENCE - ANNUAL - ACCRUAL - EMPLOYEES "STATIONED" OUTSIDE UNITED STATES - RECRUITED OVERSEAS A POSTAL EMPLOYEE WHOSE OFFICIAL DUTY STATION CONTINUES TO BE PONCE, PUERTO RICO, WHILE TRAINING IN THE UNITED STATES FOR THE DUTIES OF POSTAL INSPECTOR AND ASSIGNMENT TO DUTY AT NEW YORK, NEW YORK, UPON TRANSFER TO SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO, IS NOT ELIGIBLE TO ACCRUE THE 45 DAYS OF ANNUAL LEAVE AUTHORIZED BY 5 U.S.C. 6304 FOR INDIVIDUALS RECRUITED OR TRANSFERRED FROM THE UNITED STATES OR ITS TERRITORIES OR POSSESSIONS FOR EMPLOYMENT OUTSIDE THE AREA OF RECRUITMENT OR FROM WHICH TRANSFERRED. ALTHOUGH THE EMPLOYEE WAS ASSIGNED TO NEW YORK HE DID NOT CHANGE HIS PERMANENT RESIDENCE FROM PUERTO RICO TO ANY POINT IN THE UNITED STATES WHERE HE WOULD BE EXPECTED TO TAKE HOME LEAVE AND, THEREFORE, NO BASIS EXISTS FOR PERMITTING THE EMPLOYEE TO ACCUMULATE ANNUAL LEAVE IN EXCESS OF THE 30 DAYS FIXED BY THE ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE ACT OF 1951, AS AMENDED.

TO THE POSTMASTER GENERAL, DECEMBER 23, 1968:

THIS IS IN REPLY TO LETTER OF DECEMBER 2, 1968, FROM CHIEF INSPECTOR H. R. MONTAGUE REQUESTING OUR DECISION AS TO WHETHER INSPECTOR M. CINTRON IS ELIGIBLE TO ACCUMULATE 45 DAYS OF ANNUAL LEAVE.

INSPECTOR CINTRON, A RESIDENT OF PUERTO RICO EMPLOYED BY THE PONCE, PUERTO RICO, POST OFFICE, WAS RECRUITED AS A POSTAL INSPECTOR ON SEPTEMBER 19, 1964. PONCE WAS CONSIDERED HIS OFFICIAL DUTY STATION DURING THE INITIAL TRAINING HE RECEIVED IN THE UNITED STATES. ON COMPLETION OF HIS TRAINING HE WAS OFFICIALLY ASSIGNED ON MAY 19, 1965, TO DUTY AT NEW YORK, NEW YORK, WHERE HE SERVED UNTIL TRANSFERRED TO SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 9, 1967. POSTAL INSPECTORS ARE SUBJECT TO ASSIGNMENT WHEREEVER REQUIRED AND NO PROMISE OR GUARANTEE OF ASSIGNMENT IN PUERTO RICO WAS GIVEN TO INSPECTOR CINTRON WHEN HE WAS SELECTED FOR TRAINING AS AN INSPECTOR. OUR DECISION WAS REQUESTED INASMUCH AS THE ELIGIBILITY OF THE INSPECTOR TO ACCUMULATE 45 DAYS OF ANNUAL LEAVE WAS CONSIDERED DOUBTFUL SINCE HE WAS ORIGINALLY A RESIDENT OF PUERTO RICO WHERE HE IS NOW EMPLOYED.

SECTION 6304 OF TITLE 5, U.S.C. PROVIDES IN PERTINENT PART AS FOLLOWS:

(B) ANNUAL LEAVE NOT USED BY AN EMPLOYEE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES IN ONE OF THE FOLLOWING CLASSES OF EMPLOYEES STATIONED OUTSIDE THE UNITED STATES ACCUMULATES FOR USE IN SUCCEEDING YEARS UNTIL IT TOTALS NOT MORE THAN 45 DAYS AT THE BEGINNING OF THE FIRST FULL BIWEEKLY PAY PERIOD, OR CORRESPONDING PERIOD FOR AN EMPLOYEE WHO IS NOT PAID ON THE BASIS OF BIWEEKLY PAY PERIODS, OCCURRING IN A YEAR:

(1) INDIVIDUALS DIRECTLY RECRUITED OR TRANSFERRED BY THE GOVERNMENT OF THE UNITED STATES FROM THE UNITED STATES OR ITS TERRITORIES OR POSSESSIONS INCLUDING THE COMMONWEALTH OF PUERTO RICO FOR EMPLOYMENT OUTSIDE THE AREA OF RECRUITMENT OR FROM WHICH TRANSFERRED.

THIS SECTION WAS DERIVED FROM SECTION 203 (D) OF THE ACT OF OCTOBER 30, 1951, 65 STAT. 680, AS AMENDED. S.REPT. NO. 546, 82D CONG., TO ACCOMPANY S. 832, WHICH WAS ENACTED AS TITLE II OF S. 1046 (ACT OF OCTOBER 30, 1951), CONTAINS THE FOLLOWING ON PAGE 6:

PARAGRAPH (D) REDUCES AND STANDARDIZES THE MAXIMUM ACCUMULATION OF ANNUAL LEAVE FOR EMPLOYEES, EXCEPT OFFICERS AND EMPLOYEES IN THE FOREIGN SERVICE OF THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE, STATIONED OUTSIDE THE 48 STATES AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, AT 90 DAYS. THE REASON WHY SUCH EMPLOYEES ARE PERMITTED TO ACCUMULATE ANNUAL LEAVE IN EXCESS OF THAT PERMITTED EMPLOYEES IN THE UNITED STATES IS SO THAT THEY WILL HAVE AMPLE LEAVE FOR EXTENDED STAYS IN THE UNITED STATES WHEN THEY ARE ABLE TO RETURN. EMPLOYEES OF THE FOREIGN SERVICE ARE NOT ALLOWED THE 90 DAYS BUT ARE LIMITED TO AN ACCUMULATION OF 60 DAYS BECAUSE THEIR HOME LEAVE IS PROVIDED FOR IN A DIFFERENT MANNER. * * *

IN THE INSTANT CASE INSPECTOR CINTRON WAS ASSIGNED TO NEW YORK AND TRANSFERRED THEREAFTER TO PUERTO RICO. HOWEVER, THERE IS NO INDICATION THAT HE CHANGED HIS PERMANENT RESIDENCE TO ANY POINT IN THE UNITED STATES WHERE HE WOULD BE EXPECTED TO TAKE HOME LEAVE. THEREFORE, THERE IS NO BASIS FOR PERMITTING HIM TO ACCUMULATE THE ADDITIONAL AMOUNT OF LEAVE.

SINCE ANY LEAVE IN EXCESS OF THE 30-DAY LIMITATION FIXED BY THE ANNUAL AND SICK LEAVE ACT OF 1951, AS AMENDED, 5 U.S.C. 6304 (A), IS FORFEITED BY OPERATION OF LAW, IF NOT USED BY THE CLOSE OF THE LEAVE YEAR (SEE 36 COMP. GEN. 596), WE SUGGEST THAT MR. CINTRON BE PROMPTLY ADVISED IN ORDER THAT HE MAY HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO USE ANY EXCESS LEAVE BEFORE THE END OF THE LEAVE YEAR.