B-168726, JAN. 28, 1970

B-168726: Jan 28, 1970

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WHEN TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF A TEST FLIGHT PILOT'S REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY IS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED TO BE NECESSARY TO INSURE PILOT'S PRESENCE AT FLIGHT TEST SITE WHILE CONDITIONS FAVORABLE FOR SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS PREVAIL. TRAVEL MAY BE REGARDED AS OCCASIONED BY AN EVENT WHICH COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED UNDER 5 U.S.C. 5542 (B) (2) AND THEREFORE OVERTIME IS PAYABLE. REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER OVERTIME COMPENSATION AND/OR HOLIDAY PAY IS AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID MR. GIBSON IS A FLIGHT TEST PILOT OFFICIALLY STATIONED IN OUR SOUTHWEST REGIONAL OFFICE LOCATED IN FORT WORTH. HIS REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY IS 0830 HOURS TO 1700 HOURS. SUCH TESTS ARE REQUIRED BY CIVIL AIR REGULATIONS 6.460 AND 6.461 (A) AND SPECIAL CONDITION NO. 11.

B-168726, JAN. 28, 1970

CIVIL PAY--OVERTIME COMPENSATION--TRAVEL TIME DECISION TO CERTIFYING OFFICER OF THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AUTHORIZING OVERTIME COMPENSATION FOR CERTAIN TRAVEL. WHEN TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF A TEST FLIGHT PILOT'S REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY IS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED TO BE NECESSARY TO INSURE PILOT'S PRESENCE AT FLIGHT TEST SITE WHILE CONDITIONS FAVORABLE FOR SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS PREVAIL, TRAVEL MAY BE REGARDED AS OCCASIONED BY AN EVENT WHICH COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED UNDER 5 U.S.C. 5542 (B) (2) AND THEREFORE OVERTIME IS PAYABLE.

TO MR. R. J. SCHULLERY:

WE REFER TO YOUR LETTER OF DECEMBER 23, 1969, REQUESTING OUR DECISION WHETHER OVERTIME COMPENSATION AND/OR HOLIDAY PAY IS AUTHORIZED TO BE PAID MR. RAMON J. A. GIBSON, A FLIGHT TEST PILOT, EMPLOYED BY THE FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION (FAA) UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES RELATED IN YOUR LETTER AS FOLLOWS:

"MR. GIBSON IS A FLIGHT TEST PILOT OFFICIALLY STATIONED IN OUR SOUTHWEST REGIONAL OFFICE LOCATED IN FORT WORTH, TEXAS. HIS REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY IS 0830 HOURS TO 1700 HOURS, MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY.

"IN NOVEMBER 1968, BELL HELICOPTER CORPORATION NOTIFIED THE FAA, FORT WORTH, TEXAS THAT TESTS ON BELL MODEL 206A HELICOPTER WOULD BE SCHEDULED IN THE VICINITY OF MARQUETTE, MICHIGAN WHEN WEATHER CONDITIONS BECAME SUITABLE TO CONDUCT SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS. SUCH TESTS ARE REQUIRED BY CIVIL AIR REGULATIONS 6.460 AND 6.461 (A) AND SPECIAL CONDITION NO. 11. THE FAA, FORT WORTH, TEXAS REQUESTED BELL CORPORATION TO ADVISE THEM WHEN SNOW CONDITIONS WERE SUITABLE AND THAT MR. GIBSON WOULD PROCEED TO MICHIGAN IMMEDIATELY. NOTIFICATION THAT SNOW WAS EXPECTED WAS RECEIVED 8 DAYS LATER AND MR. GIBSON WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL FROM FORT WORTH, TEXAS TO MARQUETTE, MICHIGAN ON SUNDAY, 17 NOVEMBER 1968, IN ORDER TO PARTICIPATE IN THE FLIGHT TESTS SCHEDULED BY BELL CORPORATION ON MONDAY, 18 NOVEMBER 1968. MR. GIBSON IS CLAIMING 11-1/2 HOURS OVERTIME COMPENSATION FROM 1030-2200 HOURS FOR SUNDAY, 17 NOVEMBER 1968, FOR TRAVEL OUTSIDE HIS SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY TO A TEMPORARY DUTY STATION ON THE BASIS THAT THE SNOW CONDITIONS, A REQUIREMENT FOR THE TESTS, COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED ADMINISTRATIVELY.

"ON 21 AND 22 FEBRUARY 1969, BELL CORPORATION SCHEDULED SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS FOR BELL MODEL 206 A-1 HELICOPTER IN THE VICINITY OF SAULT STE. MARIE, MICHIGAN. MR. GIBSON WAS AUTHORIZED TO TRAVEL ON THESE DATES FROM FORT WORTH, TEXAS TO SAULT STE. MARIE AND RETURN TO PARTICIPATE IN THE FLIGHT TESTS. MR. GIBSON IS CLAIMING 1-1/2 HOURS OVERTIME COMPENSATION FROM 0700-0830 HOURS AND 5 HOURS HOLIDAY PAY, 0830- 1400 HOURS, ON FRIDAY, 21 FEBRUARY 1969, FOR TRAVEL TO TEMPORARY DUTY STATION, AND 6-1/2 HOURS OVERTIME COMPENSATION, 1430 2100 HOURS, ON SATURDAY, 22 FEBRUARY 1969, FOR HIS RETURN TRIP TO FORT WORTH."

THE PERTINENT STATUTORY PROVISION IS AS FOLLOWS (QUOTING FROM 5 U.S.C. 5542 (B) (2) ):

"(B) FOR THE PURPOSE OF THIS SUBCHAPTER--

"(2) TIME SPENT IN A TRAVEL STATUS AWAY FROM THE OFFICIAL-DUTY STATION OF AN EMPLOYEE IS NOT HOURS OF EMPLOYMENT UNLESS--

"(B) THE TRAVEL (I) INVOLVES THE PERFORMANCE OF WORK WHILE TRAVELING, (II) IS INCIDENT TO TRAVEL THAT INVOLVES THE PERFORMANCE OF WORK WHILE TRAVELING, (III) IS CARRIED OUT UNDER ARDUOUS CONDITIONS, OR (IV) RESULTS FROM AN EVENT WHICH COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED ADMINISTRATIVELY."

BASED UPON THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN YOUR LETTER WE UNDERSTAND THAT THE ONLY TIME A SNOW QUALIFICATION TEST MAY BE CONDUCTED IS WHEN SNOW CONDITIONS FAVORABLE FOR SUCH TESTS PREVAIL. CONDITIONS OF WEATHER AND CHANGES IN WEATHER CONDITIONS AT FLIGHT TEST SITES ARE NOT WITHIN THE CONTROL OF FAA. HENCE, WHEN TRAVEL OUTSIDE OF A TEST FLIGHT PILOT'S REGULARLY SCHEDULED TOUR OF DUTY IS ADMINISTRATIVELY DETERMINED TO BE NECESSARY TO INSURE THE PILOT'S PRESENCE AT THE FLIGHT TEST SITE WHILE CONDITIONS FAVORABLE FOR SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS PREVAIL, WE VIEW SUCH TRAVEL AS HAVING BEEN OCCASIONED BY AN EVENT WHICH COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED ADMINISTRATIVELY WITHIN THE MEANING OF THE QUOTED STATUTORY PROVISION.

ACCORDINGLY, MR. GIBSON MAY BE PAID OVERTIME COMPENSATION FOR THE TRAVEL HE WAS REQUIRED TO PERFORM ON SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 17, 1968. ALSO, HE WOULD BE ENTITLED TO 1-1/2 HOURS OVERTIME AND 5 HOURS HOLIDAY PAY FOR TRAVEL TIME ON FEBRUARY 21, 1969.

CONCERNING THE RETURN TRIP TO HIS OFFICIAL STATION ON SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22, 1969, NO DUTY OTHER THAN PARTICIPATION IN SNOW QUALIFICATION TESTS WAS ORDERED OR PERFORMED BY THE PILOT AT SAULT STE. MARIE, AND NO OTHER ORDERS WERE ISSUED TO THE EMPLOYEE PRIOR TO HIS RETURN TO HIS OFFICIAL STATION SHORTLY AFTER COMPLETION OF THE TESTS ON SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 22. IN THE CIRCUMSTANCES, HIS RETURN TRAVEL TO HIS PERMANENT STATION ON SUCH SATURDAY ALSO REASONABLY MAY BE VIEWED AS HAVING BEEN OCCASIONED BY THE EVENT WHICH COULD NOT BE SCHEDULED OR CONTROLLED ADMINISTRATIVELY. ACCORDINGLY, IF THE TRAVEL OF THE EMPLOYEE ON FEBRUARY 22 IS ADMINISTRATIVELY APPROVED HE MAY BE PAID OVERTIME COMPENSATION FOR 6-1/2 HOURS TRAVEL TIME ON THAT DATE.