B-173713, AUG 31, 1971

B-173713: Aug 31, 1971

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CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - SALARY ADJUSTMENT DECISION HOLDING THAT THE ACTION TAKEN BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY IN ADJUSTING CLAIMANT'S SALARY WAS CORRECT. THE FACT THAT THE FIELD OFFICE INVOLVED WAS LATE IN RECEIVING THE FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 2. THE FPM LETTER HAS THE FORCE AND EFFECT OF LAW AND IS BINDING ON THE GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS AND MAY NOT BE WAIVED. CONCERNING YOUR PROPER SALARY RATE AFTER THE POSITION YOU OCCUPIED WAS REMOVED FROM THE SPECIAL SALARY PAY SCHEDULE AND PLACED UNDER THE GENERAL PAY SCHEDULE. GS-12 MECHANICAL ENGINEER POSITIONS WERE REMOVED FROM THE SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULE AND PLACED UNDER THE GENERAL PAY SCHEDULE EFFECTIVE THE FIRST DAY OF THE FIRST PAY PERIOD THAT BEGAN ON OR AFTER JANUARY 31.

B-173713, AUG 31, 1971

CIVILIAN EMPLOYEE - SALARY ADJUSTMENT DECISION HOLDING THAT THE ACTION TAKEN BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY IN ADJUSTING CLAIMANT'S SALARY WAS CORRECT. THE FACT THAT THE FIELD OFFICE INVOLVED WAS LATE IN RECEIVING THE FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL LETTER DATED FEBRUARY 2, 1971 AND INADVERTENTLY GRANTED CLAIMANT A STEP INCREASE, DOES NOT AFFECT HIS RIGHTS. THE FPM LETTER HAS THE FORCE AND EFFECT OF LAW AND IS BINDING ON THE GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS AND MAY NOT BE WAIVED. THEREFORE, THE ARMY PROPERLY ADJUSTED CLAIMANT'S SALARY TO GS-12, STEP 4 IN ORDER TO PRESERVE HIS RATE OF PAY.

TO ROSCOE E. SPENCER:

THIS REFERS TO YOUR LETTER OF JULY 30, 1971, WITH ENCLOSURES, CONCERNING YOUR PROPER SALARY RATE AFTER THE POSITION YOU OCCUPIED WAS REMOVED FROM THE SPECIAL SALARY PAY SCHEDULE AND PLACED UNDER THE GENERAL PAY SCHEDULE.

THE INFORMATION OF RECORD SHOWS THAT YOU HELD THE POSITION OF MECHANICAL ENGINEER, GS-830-12, STEP 3, WITH A SALARY OF $16,543 PER ANNUM UNDER THE SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULE. BY FEDERAL PERSONNEL MANUAL (FPM) LETTER NO. 530-157, DATED FEBRUARY 2, 1971, GS-12 MECHANICAL ENGINEER POSITIONS WERE REMOVED FROM THE SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULE AND PLACED UNDER THE GENERAL PAY SCHEDULE EFFECTIVE THE FIRST DAY OF THE FIRST PAY PERIOD THAT BEGAN ON OR AFTER JANUARY 31, 1971. IN ORDER TO PRESERVE YOUR RATE OF PAY ($16,543 PER ANNUM) OF STEP 3 IN THE SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULE, YOU WERE PLACED IN STEP 4 ($16,543 PER ANNUM) OF THE GENERAL PAY SCHEDULE. HOWEVER, BEFORE THE FPM LETTER WAS RECEIVED BY THE FIELD OFFICE YOU INADVERTENTLY RECEIVED A STEP INCREASE FROM STEP 3 ($16,543 PER ANNUM) TO STEP 4 ($17,044 PER ANNUM) IN THE SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULE EFFECTIVE FEBRUARY 14, 1971. UPON RECEIPT OF THE CIVIL SERVICE INSTRUCTIONS, THE PERSONNEL OFFICE OF THE FIELD OFFICE CANCELED YOUR STEP INCREASE AND PLACED YOU IN THE FOURTH STEP OF THE GENERAL RATE SCHEDULE ($16,543 PER ANNUM). THE FACT THAT THE FIELD OFFICE WAS LATE IN RECEIVING THE FPM LETTER WOULD NOT AFFECT YOUR RIGHTS. THE FPM LETTER PLACES INTO EFFECT THE RESULTS OF THE 1970 ANNUAL REVIEW OF SPECIAL SALARY RATE SCHEDULES ESTABLISHED BY THE COMMISSION UNDER THE AUTHORITY OF 5 U.S.C. 5303 AND EXECUTIVE ORDER 11073. THE ANNUAL REVIEW IS REQUIRED BY EXECUTIVE ORDER 11073 AND SERVES AS THE BASIS FOR DETERMINING WHICH SPECIAL SCHEDULES WILL BE CONTINUED AND WHICH SCHEDULES WILL BE ADJUSTED UP OR DOWN. THE FPM LETTER HAS THE FORCE AND EFFECT OF LAW AND IS BINDING ON THE GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS AND MAY NOT BE WAIVED.

THUS, IT APPEARS THAT THE ACTION TAKEN BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY IN ADJUSTING YOUR SALARY WAS CORRECT.